Forum II builds momentum for responsible steel production

Over 100 people involved in the global steel supply chain gathered at ResponsibleSteel’s Forum II, to collaborate on finding solutions to the challenges currently facing the steel industry.

The event was hosted by ResponsibleSteel Founding Member BlueScope Steel in Wollongong, Australia, from 1-3 December. It included the official launch of the ResponsibleSteel Standard, the world’s first international, multi-stakeholder standard for responsible production for steel making and processing. Steel companies from Europe and Australia publicly committed to having their sites certified, with some as early as the first half of 2020.

There are now over 50 Members of ResponsibleSteel, with a good representation across industry and civil society. At the Forum, ResponsibleSteel welcomed new Members Anglo American, Carport, Clean Air Task Force, Harsco and Lendlease, and new Associate Members ACRS (Australasian Certification Authority for Reinforcing and Structural Steels certification), GUTcert GmbH, HERA (Heavy Engineering Research Association), RTQMS (Real Time Quality Management Services), Sustainable Steel Council, and United Certification Systems.

Of significant note is the first construction organisation – Lendlease, an international property and infrastructure group – which called on its peers, clients and competitors to follow suit and join ResponsibleSteel, and mining company – Anglo American – which has committed to assess all of its operations against rigorous third party certification processes.

ResponsibleSteel was honoured to have Edwin Basson, Director General of the World Steel Association (worldsteel), deliver the keynote address on the opening morning and participate in an open interview and Q&A session. In his speech, Edwin Basson recognised the unique and important role that ResponsibleSteel plays as the only global multi-stakeholder standard and certification initiative, and noted that the overall objectives of ResponsibleSteel align extremely well with those of worldsteel. In an interview with Matthew Wenban-Smith, Executive Director, ResponsibleSteel, areas of potential collaboration between the two organisations were discussed, with a commitment to outline priority activities in key geographies and specific issues for 2020.

Also present at Forum II were three existing mining standards certification bodies – IRMA, MAC TSM and Bettercoal. It was agreed that there should be increasing collaboration between ResponsibleSteel and these organisations to create effective ways of better linking with these programmes to drive value for miners, steelmakers and stakeholders.

As well as three days of discussions, panels and networking, many attendees took the opportunity to join a walking tour to see Australia’s only quench and temper steel manufacturing facility, at BlueScope Steel’s Port Kembla Steelworks.

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