Accelerating the transition of energy-intensive basic
materials industries to climate neutrality are becoming an
increasingly urgent matter. In the EU, direct (Scope 1) emissions
from basic materials such as iron and steel, cement and
non-metallic minerals, basic chemicals, aluminum, and
(pulp and paper) account for approximately 16 percent of net
annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, while globally the
amount is around 20 percent. Given the life cycle of assets
within these industries, the EU has just one investment cycle
to shift production processes to achieve a domestic climate
neutrality by 2050. Climate neutrality for basic materials is
only achievable through a mix of strategies including circularity,
material substitution and innovative zero-carbon production
for virgin materials. More efficient use of materials in final
products can also help to reduce emissions from basic materials,
but does not alone constitute a sufficient mechanism to achieve
climate neutrality.

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