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Material Balance

The Kobe Steel Group undertakes environmentally conscious management throughout every aspect of its operations.

As part of this approach, the Group continuously strives for greater energy efficiency, effective use of byproduct gases, waste heat, water and other resources, and the recycling of byproducts.

Resource and Energy Usage at Kobe Steel

Iron & Steel Business

At Kobe Steel, 95% of the energy usage is in the Iron & Steel Business. In fiscal 2013, this business unit used 11.55 million tons of iron ore, 6.16 million tons of coking coal and coke, 11PJ*1 of fuels such as coal, oil and municipal gas, and 930,000 MWh of purchased power. Nearly all of the byproduct gases — including coke oven gas, blast furnace gas and converter gas — derived from production processes are effectively reused as fuel for reheating steel or for use in in-house power plants. Kobe Steel also proactively implements power generation that utilizes waste heat. Combined with the power generated from byproduct gases, over 60% of the power required by production processes is generated through energy recovery.

Insofar as possible, byproducts produced during production processes, such as steel slag*2, dust and sludge, are also turned to effective use as raw materials in applications such as cement and roadbeds. Together with in-company re-use, 98% of byproducts are recycled in this manner.

In the future, Kobe Steel will continue to pursue environmentally friendly practices throughout all aspects of its operations, striving for more efficient use of resources and energy and advancing the development of new technologies to that end.

*1 1PJ=1015J
*2 Slag is recovered from molten pig iron during refining. (It is also called blast furnace slag, steelmaking slag, etc.).

Resource and Energy Usage in the Iron & Steel Business (Fiscal 2013)

Resource and Energy Usage in the Iron & Steel Business (Fiscal 2013)

Welding Business

Using metal wires, hoops, fluxes, soluble glass and other raw materials, the Welding Business produces welding electrodes and welding wires. In fiscal 2013 the Fujisawa, Ibaraki, Saijo and Fukuchiyama plants used a combined 180,000 tons of raw materials, 65,000 MWh of electricity, and 0.2PJ of municipal gas and other fuels to manufacture 170,000 tons worth of products. This generated 17,000 tons of byproducts, of which 98% was successfully recycled.

Resource and Energy Usage in the Welding Business (Fiscal 2013)

Input   Output
Raw materials   Products
Metal wires, hoops, flux, soluble glass, etc. 180,000 t   Welding rods, welding wires, etc. 170,000 t
Energy   Waste materials
Purchased power 65,000 MWh   Amount produced 17,000 t
Municipal gas, etc. 0.2PJ   Recycling ratio* 98%

* Recycling ratio indicates the ratio of waste produced that is not consigned to landfills.

Aluminum & Copper Business

Using ingots and scrap as raw materials, the Aluminum & Copper Business produces a variety of aluminum and copper products. In fiscal 2013 the business unit used 380,000 tons of raw materials, 450,000 MWh of electricity, and 3.5PJ of municipal gas and other fuels to create 340,000 tons of products.

During melting and casting, 24,000 tons of waste products, such as slag, dust and wastewater sludge, were produced. However, 96% of this waste was successfully recycled.

Resource and Energy Usage in the Aluminum & Copper Business (Fiscal 2013)

Input   Output
Raw materials   Products
Aluminum ingots, copper ingots, etc. 380,000 t   Aluminum and copper products 340,000 t
Energy   Waste materials
Purchased power 450,000 MWh   Amount produced 24,000 t
Municipal gas, etc. 3.5PJ   Recycling ratio* 96%