At a conference in Trondheim, Norway, Hydro President and CEO Svein Richard Brandtzæg challenged the traditional thinking that aluminium production is negative for the environment.
"Yes, producing aluminium requires lots of energy. And yes, CO2 is indeed an inherent byproduct of the electrolysis process. But to make any sense of aluminium's impact on the climate, we need to apply a life-cycle perspective on our metal. And what we then realize is that this metal and material has the potential to be climate-positive," said Brandtzæg to the participants at the conference.
The biannual Technoport conference serves as a platform for dialogue among policymakers, industry players and voices of technology and science. The outspoken aim of the conference is to promote the development of smart technology as a tool in the transition to a greener economy.
"We all agree in the urgency for the world economy to go from gray to green and challenge the waste of energy. In Hydro we see it as our responsibility – and opportunity – to do our part to make it happen," said Brandtzæg, explaining that Hydro takes a three-step approach this challenge.
"We can reduce our own emissions and energy consumption in the primary production process, we can help our customers reduce their emissions, and our metal can be recycled again and again, saving more energy and CO2 emissions each time it is recycled.
"It may sound like science fiction that aluminium can be climate-positive. But in reality it is science, not fiction," said Brandtzæg.