2.C.1 - Iron & Steel Production

Short description

The source subcategory NFR 2.C.1 - Iron & Steel Production comprises process-related emissions from oxygen steel and electric steel production.

Category Code Method AD EF
2.C.1 T2 NS CS
Key Category: -/- -/- L/- -/- L/T L/T L/T - L/- L/T L/T L/T L/T L/T L/-

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T = key source by Trend L = key source by Level

D Default
RA Reference Approach
T1 Tier 1 / Simple Methodology *
T2 Tier 2*
T3 Tier 3 / Detailed Methodology *
CS Country Specific
M Model
* as described in the EMEP/CORINAIR Emission Inventory Guidebook - 2007, in the group specific chapters.
AD - Data Source for Activity Data
NS National Statistics
RS Regional Statistics
IS International Statistics
PS Plant Specific data
AS Associations, business organisations
Q specific questionnaires, surveys
EF - Emission Factors
D Default (EMEP Guidebook)
C Confidential
CS Country Specific
PS Plant Specific data

In 2020 a total of 24.1 million tonnes of raw steel were produced in six integrated steelworks. Electrical steel production amounted to another 11.5 million tonnes.

Other structural elements are sinter production, hot iron production, hot rolling, iron and steel foundries (including malleable casting). The last Siemens-Martin steelworks (Stahlwerk Brandenburg) was shut down shortly after 1990. The last Thomas steelworks (Maxhütte Sulzbach-Rosenberg) discontinued its production in 2002. Due to their minor relevance and their phase-out, the emissions from Siemens-Martin and Thomas steel production are jointly calculated with the emissions from oxygen steel production.

Energy-related emissions from steel production for the years 1990 to 1994 (for individual pollutants until 1999) are reported under 1.A Fuel combustions in the respective subcategory 1.A.2.a. A detailed explanation for the individual pollutants is also found there.

 Illustration Blast Furnace


Activity data

Activity data is collected from plant operators by national institutions. Since the discontinuation of the special public statistics for iron and steel production (FS. 4, R. 8.1), the information is collected by the German steel trade association Wirtschaftsvereinigung Stahl (WV Stahl) based on a formal agreement.

As the activity rates for 2017 could not be provided by WV Stahl as a result of compliance issues, aggregated figures from emissions trading were used instead. The consistency of emissions trading data was verified against comparative figures for previous years. The deviations were less than 1%; only in sinter production were they noticeably higher (maximum + 8%).

In the iron and steel industry, only minor amounts of secondary fuels are used for pig iron production in individual blast furnaces. They are used as substitute reducing agents of coke and coal. To date, these materials have not yet been included in the national statistics nor in the Energy Balance. For this reason, the data used is also provided by WV Stahl.

Emission factors

The emission factors used to calculate emissions are based on emission data from individual plants. The emission factors for 1995 to 2001 were determined by the German Environment Agency (UBA for its initials in German) itself and those for 2008 and later through a research project.

As the EF for the years 1995 to 2001 as well as for 2008 are based on real stack emission data. Since both combustion and process-related emissions are released through the same stacks, emission factors could not be calculated individually for combustion or process-related emissions. Hence, wherever plant-based EF were availaible, as it the case for most pollutants for the years 1995 and later, all emissions are reported under 2.C.1.

Please note that the reported emissions also cover diffuse emissions from sources that are not covered in the EMEP/EEA Guidebook. For many pollutants and sources, individual EFs for channelled as well as diffuse emissions have been determined. While there is sufficient knowledge and measurement data of channelled emissions, the emission data concerning diffuse sources is usually based on estimations using parameters adapted to the local conditions of the individual emission source. Therefore, emission data for one source of diffuse emissions is not significant for the diffuse emissions from other plants. The emission factors given below were calculated as the weighted average of the pollution loads reported by the plant operators for individual diffuse sources, in relation to their corresponding production amounts.

Table 1: Overview of the emission factors applied for sinter production

Pollutant Type of source EF 1990 EF 1995 EF 2000 EF 2005 EF 2010 Unit
Cd 0.098 0.052 0.017 g/t
CO 19.152 17.325 15.497 14.4 kg/t
Cr 0.077 0.044 0.02 g/t
HCB 0.03 mg/t
Hg 0.059 0.028 0.005 g/t
Ni 0.139 0.068 0.015 g/t
NMVOC 0.12 kg/t
NOx IE1) 0.558 0.46 0.401 kg/t
PAH channelled 320.00 248.571 177.143 120 mg/t
Pb 5.299 3.242 1.7 g/t
PCB 3.0 2.285714 1.571429 1 mg/t
PCDD/F 6.0 4.575 3.149 1.724 0.796 µg/t
SO2 IE2) 1.08 0.837 0.691 kg/t
TSP channelled 0.65 0.465 0.234 0.096 kg/t
TSP diffuse 0.046 kg/t
PM10 channelled 0.445 0.336 0.177 0.07 kg/t
PM10 diffuse 0.016 kg/t
PM2.5 channelled 0.214 0.206 0.13 0.056 kg/t

Table 2: Overview of the emission factors applied for pig iron production

Pollutant Type of source EF 1995 EF 2000 EF 2005 EF 2010 Unit
PAH channelled 0.5 mg/t
Cd channelled 4.0 mg/t
Cd diffuse 0.203 mg/t
CO channelled 1.18 0.915 0.65 0.491 kg/t
CO diffuse 0.398 kg/t
Cr channelled 0.019 0.006 0.002 0.001 g/t
Cr diffuse 0.008 g/t
Hg channelled 2.436 0.192 0.015 0.003 mg/t
Hg diffuse 0.005 mg/t
Ni channelled 21.0 6.0 2.0 1.0 mg/t
Ni diffuse 8.0 mg/t
NMVOC 18.525 g/t
NOx channelled 0.051938 0.051938 0.051938 0.0517 kg/t
NOx diffuse 0.001 g/t
Pb channelled 0.022 g/t
Pb diffuse 0.011 g/t
PCDD/F 0.026 0.009 0.004 0.004 µg/t
SO2 channelled 0.242 kg/t
SO2 diffuse 0.04 kg/t
TSP channelled 0.022 0.015 0.01 0.008 kg/t
TSP diffuse 0.016 kg/t
PM10 channelled 0.013 0.009 0.006 0.006 kg/t
PM10 diffuse 0.007 kg/t
PM2.5 channelled 0.009 0.007 0.005 0.004 kg/t

Table 3: Overview of the emission factors applied for oxygen steel production

Pollutant Type of source EF 1995 EF 2000 EF 2005 EF 2010 Unit
Cd 0.053 0.038 0.024 0.016 g/t
CO 11.500 11.077 10.654 10.400 kg/t
Cr channelled 0.715 0.306 0.125 0.028 g/t
Cr diffuse 0.069 g/t
Ni channelled 0.090 0.060 0.030 0.006 g/t
Ni diffuse 0.004 g/t
NOx channelled 0.006 0.005 0.005 0.004 kg/t
NOx diffuse 0.0037 kg/t
PAH channelled 0.100 mg/t
Pb channelled 2.941 1.883 0.824 0.189 g/t
Pb diffuse 0.278 g/t
PCB 2.670 1.740 1 1 mg/t
PCDD/F 0.070 0.070 0.070 0.069 µg/t
SO2 diffuse 0.001 kg/t
TSP channelled 0.155 0.145 0.145 0.024 kg/t
TSP diffuse 0.049 kg/t
PM10 channelled 0.099 0.093 0.093 0.020 kg/t
PM10 diffuse 0.019 kg/t
PM2.5 channelled 0.025 0.023 0.023 0.017 kg/t

Table 4: Overview of the emission factors applied for electric steel production

Pollutant Type of source EF 1995 EF 2000 EF 2005 EF 2010 Unit
Cd 0.240 0.157 0.065 0.016 g/t
CO channelled 1.700 1.187 0.674 0.366 kg/t
CO diffuse 0.001 kg/t
Cr channelled 0.481 0.206 0.258 0.323 g/t
Cr diffuse 0.851 g/t
Hg channelled 0.306 0.288 0.154 0.070 g/t
Ni channelled 0.483 0.207 0.145 0.124 g/t
Ni diffuse 0.284 g/t
NMVOC 0.035 0.024 0.012 0.006 kg/t
NOx channelled 0.122 0.12 0.106 0.098 kg/t
NOx diffuse 0.014 kg/t
PAH 45 22.1 3.798 3.793 mg/t
Pb channelled 4.075 1.747 0.720 0.170 g/t
Pb diffuse 0.056 g/t
PCB 5.68 3.360 1.500 1.500 mg/t
PCDD/F 0.466 0.295 0.158 0.158 µg/t
SO2 channelled 0.113 kg/t
SO2 diffuse 0.004 kg/t
TSP channelled 0.28 0.12 0.074 0.018 kg/t
TSP diffuse 0.043 kg/t
PM10 channelled 0.179 0.08 0.051 0.013 kg/t
PM10 diffuse 0.007 kg/t
PM2.5 channelled 0.045 0.04 0.038 0.011 kg/t

Table 5: Overview of the emission factors applied for hot and cold rolling

Pollutant Type of source EF 1995 EF 2000 EF 2005 EF 2010 unit Trend
CO 5.0 g/t constant
NH3 0.700 g/t constant
NMVOC 3.0 g/t constant
NOx 0.410 0.276 0.196 kg/t falling
SO2 0.059 0.050 0.044 kg/t falling
TSP channelled 0.020 kg/t constant
TSP diffuse 0.010 kg/t constant
PM10 channelled 0.304 g/t constant
PM10 diffuse 0.645 g/t constant
PM2.5 channelled 0.266 g/t constant

Table 6: Overview of the emission factors applied for iron and steel casting

Pollutant EF 2010 Unit Trend
NH3 0.027 kg/t falling
NMVOC 0.150 kg/t constant
NOx 0.242 kg/t falling
PAH 0.100 g/t constant
PCDD/F 0.190 µg/t constant
SO2 0.256 kg/t falling
TSP 0.200 kg/t constant
PM10 0.137 kg/t constant
PM2.5 0.0836 kg/t constant


For sinter production, as long as no country specific emission factor for HCB has been derived, the standard emission factor is used. By implementing the EMEP/EEA Guidebook standard emission factor, Germany is following recommendations provided by the Expert Review Team for the NECD-Review in 2020.

The trends in emissions correspond to the trends of emission factors given in the tables above, which are often driven by regulatory measures.

However, since 2010, the main driver of the emission trends in most cases is the activity data.


For more information on recalculated emission estimates for the Base Year and 2019, please see the pollutant specific recalculation tables in the following chapter 8.1 - Recalculations.


In the 2021 review the application of a consistent methodology in reporting of PAH emissions in 2C1-iron and steel production was claimed. As there is not enough data available to report individual PAHs Germany decided to only report total-PAHs for the whole time. But for pig iron production a national total-PAH emission factor was missing. For that source the national inventory solely included BaP emissions. Due to the limitation of data the total-PAH emission factor for pig iron production was derived from the BaP emission factor on the basis of the following conservative ansatz (not changing the overall PAH emission trend): Emissions of PAH depend on the coating material used. The emission factor in table 3.8 of the actual emission guidebook 2019 for pig iron production (2500 mg/t) is only valid for tar containing coating material and excluded abatement technics. Both assumptions are not appropriate for Germany. As tar-free materials are used for coating PAH emissions should not play any role. And the blast furnace gas is conducted and used. But as PAH emissions could not be surely ruled out and in order to avoid an underestimation of PAH emissions in pig iron production the emission factor for total-PAH is set to the 10-fold of the BaP emission factor.

Planned improvements

no improvements planned.

1) , 2)
Emissions were reported under NRF Code 1.A.2.a