Rio Tinto (LSE:RIO)
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From Jul 2019 to Jul 2020
By Rhiannon Hoyle
SYDNEY--Rio Tinto PLC (RIO.LN) on Wednesday signed a partnership agreement with China's biggest steelmaker, China Baowu Steel Group Corp., and a Chinese university to explore ways to cut the steel industry's giant carbon footprint.
Rio Tinto said the memorandum of understanding with Baowu and Tsinghua University would pave the way for a working group to develop and implement new methods of reducing steel-sector emissions and improving the industry's environmental performance more broadly. Rio Tinto is the world's second-biggest mining company by market value and a top producer of iron ore, a key steel-making ingredient.
The global steel industry accounts for between 7% and 9% of direct emissions from the use of fossil fuel, according to the World Steel Association.
"The materials we produce have an important role to play in the transition to a low-carbon future and we are committed to partnering with our customers and others to find the most sustainable ways to produce, process and market them," said Rio Tinto Chief Executive Jean-Sébastien Jacques.
Rio Tinto has faced questions from investors and activists on how it might help address the pollution customers create when using its products, particularly iron ore. The miner earlier this year signaled it would seek to address climate issues by collaborating with customers, rather than seeking to set targets for them, and Mr. Jacques said Wednesday's agreement is a "pioneering partnership."
China Baowu Chairman Chen Derong said the steelmaker hopes to jointly tackle climate challenges with its partners in the MoU to help create a less-polluting steel industry.
Write to Rhiannon Hoyle at email@example.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
September 25, 2019 07:44 ET (11:44 GMT)
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