Aluminium in the Spotlight

    Stockholm (NordSIP) – According to a report published by the Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI), the world’s 12 top aluminium producers are better, on average, at managing greenhouse gas emissions than other carbon-intensive manufacturing sectors such as cement, paper and steel.

    TPI assesses companies’ management of greenhouse gas emissions through its Management Quality Score, which rates companies across five levels of climate change risk integration. According to the report, the three companies with the lowest score (level 1) were Chalco, China Zhongwang and Press Metal. UACJ and UC Rusal, were ranked one level above, followed by Alumina, Arconic, Nippon Light Metal and Norsk Hydro, at level 3. The best performers in management quality are Alcoa, Rio Tinto and South32.

    These top ten performers may not be representative of the industry as a whole. “All the leading companies in this sector are listed in OECD countries, and several are diversified with major operations in other commodities such as mining. By contrast, more than half of global primary aluminium production is located in China,” says the report.

    With regards to carbon emissions, TPI highlights the limited availability of data for the aluminium sector. “This reflects a lack of emissions disclosure of, and limited target-setting for, aluminium production specifically,” the report clarifies. “Aluminium producers’ emissions intensity varies widely, due mainly to the source of electricity used for smelting.”

    Only 3 Alcoa, Norsk Hydro and Rio Tinto have an emissions intensity “aligned with the Paris Agreement benchmarks,” says the report. Moreover, “Norsk Hydro’s current emissions intensity is almost as low as the benchmark for being Below 2C in 2030. Only two companies have a target to reduce their emissions intensity of aluminium production that extends to at least 2020: Alcoa and UC Rusal. Neither is aligned with the benchmarks,” according to the authors. Alumina and UC Rusal are the worst performers, while no emissions intensity data was available for Chalco, Press Metal, UACJ and South42.

    Click here to read the detailed presentation of TPI findings for the aluminium sector.

    Picture from Pixabay.

    Filipe Albuquerque
    Filipe Albuquerque
    Filipe is an economist with 8 years of experience in macroeconomic and financial analysis for the Economist Intelligence Unit, the UN World Institute for Development Economic Research, the Stockholm School of Economics and the School of Oriental and African Studies. Filipe holds a MSc in European Political Economy from the LSE and a MSc in Economics from the University of London, where he currently is a PhD candidate.

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