WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu issued the following statement on today's groundbreaking for a high-efficiency, energy recovery project at ArcelorMittal's Indiana Harbor steel mill in East Chicago, Indiana. This project is part of the Department of Energy's investments in industrial energy efficiency funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
"Today's event in East Chicago is a clear example of the benefits of the Recovery Act's investments in the U.S. manufacturing sector," said Secretary Chu. "This project is creating new jobs in the Midwest and by reducing energy use at the steel mill, it will lower operating costs at the facility and help to make the company more competitive. Through the Recovery Act, we're seeing that investments in energy efficiency are saving American businesses money, reducing pollution, and helping to improve our economy."
BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON TODAY'S ANNOUNCEMENT
ArcelorMittal received $31.6 million under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to improve the efficiency at its Indiana Harbor steel mill in East Chicago, Indiana. This funding is being matched by the company to support the $63.2 million Energy Recovery and Reuse Project. The project will allow ArcelorMittal to install an efficient boiler system that will use the waste blast furnace gas generated during iron making operations to produce steam and electricity onsite.
ArcelorMittal Indiana Harbor is the largest iron making facility in North America and operates five blast furnaces. The byproduct gas of the blast furnace process is typically burned in an open flame. With this new project, ArcelorMittal will capture the blast furnace gas and use it to generate steam and electricity. This high-efficiency, energy recovery boiler will almost entirely eliminate the flaring of blast furnace gas, while producing over 36 megawatts of electricity, enough to power nearly 30,000 homes a year.
This project will also provide significant economic impacts to the city and region by creating hundreds of jobs. According to estimates from the company, the project will create 360 jobs related to the design, construction and manufacture of the equipment alone. It will also employ 200 local tradespeople for approximately 18 months, and, through the energy cost savings it provides, it will help to preserve 5,900 direct jobs associated with mill operations.