Freshwater is a very scarce resource, especially in India. In our iron- and steel-making processes, water is also a key resource as a coolant. Over the last decade, we have already reduced our freshwater usage by 45%, and we have set a goal for 2025: zero liquid waste. How can we improve our current water technologies to reach our goal?
Tata Steel works to optimize the use of water
Established in Jamshedpur, India in the year 1907, Tata Steel is part of the 150-year-old Tata group.
Some key facts:
- The Tata Steel Group is the 10th largest steel manufacturer in the world and is known to be the symbol of corporate citizenship and business ethics. With operations in 26 countries and commercial presence in 50 countries, the Tata Steel Group has a steel production capacity of 27.5 MTPA (Metric Tons Per Year).
- Tata Steel is an integrated steel plant with our own iron ore and coal mines. We have iron-making blast furnaces and steel-making Basic Oxygen Furnaces (ovens).
- Tata Steel India has two integrated steel plants: one in Jamshedpur in the state of Jharkhand and one in Kalinganagar, Odisha state.
- We are continuously working on energy-saving technologies such as high productivity blast furnaces, waste heat recovery through top recovery turbines in blast furnaces, and Coke Dry Quenching (CDQ) in coke ovens. We have continuously improved our energy efficiency and recently commissioned a 3 MW Solar plant at our Noamundi iron ore mines.
Besides this challenge, we set out two more challenges. Not only do we want to reach zero water waste by 2025, but we are also working on 100% solid waste (slag) reuse, as well as CO2 emissions.
Reduction in freshwater use and discharge
The freshwater consumption levels in 2018 were 3.68 m3/ton of crude steel and 4.75 m3/ton of crude steel, respectively at the Jamshedpur and Kalinganagar factories. The water intake at Kalinganagar is high due to commissioning activities (production increase) in 2018.
At our Jamshedpur factory, we managed to increase water reuse and started rainwater harvesting. With the infrastructure improved, we want to start involving local communities around our factories and mines to not only save more water within our factory, but also have a positive impact on our surroundings. Over the last decade, we have reduced our freshwater intake with 45%. We achieved this through amongst others, (online) monitoring of water consumption, audits in high consuming departments and improved recycling technologies.
Zero water waste by 2025
We already managed to reduce our fresh water consumption by 45%. The challenge for Tata Steel is to achieve zero liquid discharge by 2025, by improving water efficiency in processes and increased recycling. We are looking for technologies and collaborations to improve water efficiency and water recycling/reuse.
We are open to partnerships within the industry or with other industries or academia/research organisations working on water recycling and reuse. Preferably located in India, but not necessarily. Tata Steel is ready to offer an open and start-up kind of environment to potential partners who can help us come up with innovative solutions towards reducing our fresh water intake and overall footprint.
Do you have a company that could help us out to reduce our water usage and close our water loop? We would be very happy to hear from you. Upload your solution on the Futureproof community!