The EU Commission visits Swedish steel companies

On April 22–26, the authors from the European IPPC Bureau in Seville will visit Swedish steel companies to gather information for the best available techniques reference documents, known as BREFs, for ferrous metals processing (FMP). 

They will be visiting the following companies: Monday, AB Sandvik Materials Technology in Sandviken and Ovako Sweden AB in Hofors. Tuesday, Uddeholms AB in Hagfors. Wednesday, Outokumpu Stainless AB in Avesta and Thursday, SSAB in Borlänge.

Together with the two authors from IPPC-Bureau in Seville (Joint Research Institute) also representatives from the German Environment Agency, UBA, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, Jernkontoret - the Swedish Steel Producers’ Association, and Eurofer – the European Steel Association is part of the delegation. The visit gives Sweden a unique opportunity to showcase the special conditions in Sweden as well as Swedish steel industry very high level of specialization.

– We are very pleased that the European Commission is visiting us,
this kind of visit is unusual. It is important to show them how Swedish special steel products create a great deal of social benefit in their use, including lower carbon footprint, says Bo-Erik Pers, CEO at Jernkontoret, the Swedish Steel Producers’ Association.

It is the first time ever that the Swedish steel industry is so actively involved in the process of developing BREF documents and the visit helps to create an understanding of specialized steel industry. In parallel with the study visit, a comprehensive collection of data is being sent to the Commission, including e.g. process technologies, emissions and energy use. Nearly 300 companies, of which 13 are Swedish steel plants, participate in compiling the BREF documents. The data collection has been coordinated and reviewed by the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (Naturvårdsverket).

– Complementing data collection with a study visit will facilitate the work of describing particularly important conditions for Sweden. It is also particularly pleasing that the delegation has representatives from our counterpart in Germany, says Jenny Håkansson, responsible for FMP BREF at the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency.

When data collection is completed, compilation and analysis will be done. Thereafter the wording of the documents begins. This work is expected to last two years. A BREF document becomes legally binding four years after it has been adopted, and it applies as general binding rules in parallel with the Swedish environmental permits set in court.


Eva Blixt, Senior Advisor, environmental issues i.e. BREFs, +46 70 679 17 95

Anna-Karin Nyman, Director of Communications, +46 70 206 75 62