UK Steel: British Steel announcement heralds a vision for new, modern steelmaking

6 November 2023

British Steel has today announced a plan for £1.25 billion investment to adopt electric arc furnace steelmaking. The proposals, which await suitable support from the UK Government, mean that British Steel could install two electric arc furnaces (EAFs), one at British Steel headquarters in Scunthorpe, and the second at the manufacturing site in Teesside. 

British Steel plans to continue current operations until a transition to electric arc steelmaking is complete. 

This announcement follows UK Steel’s Net Zero Steel - A Vision for the Future of UK Steel Production report, published last year, which set out the sector’s roadmap to meet Net Zero targets. Net Zero Steel detailed how the sector could rapidly reduce emissions, attract new investment into the UK, and ensure green steel production in the UK, essential for new rail, electric vehicles, wind turbines, and energy-efficient housing. 

Responding to today’s announcement, UK Steel Director General, Gareth Stace, said:  

“With British Steel’s announcement, it is clear the UK steel sector is completely committed to rapid decarbonisation. Just one year after publishing the sector’s Net Zero roadmap, the UK’s major steel producers are taking crucial steps to decarbonise by 2035. 

“UK steelmaking needs to compete on the world market and regain market share at home and abroad.  

“This is a turning point for UK steelmaking. During this transition, we must all work together in partnership with industry, Government and trade unions to ensure the future of our sector. As we switch to electric steelmaking and cut our emissions, planning regulation snags and high electricity prices must not hold back investment in new EAF capacity. It will not be a straightforward transition, but for the whole steel sector, from existing electric furnaces to companies making huge investments now, our goal is clear.”  


Contact details

Louise Young, Campaigns and Engagement Manager, UK Steel

07388 370176 | 

About UK Steel: 

UK Steel is the trade association for the UK steel industry. It represents all the country’s steelmakers and most downstream steel processors. 

  • In July 2022, UK Steel published its “Net Zero Steel - A Vision for the Future of UK Steel Production” report, with the backing of all six steel producers, in collaboration with unions, academics, and Government departments. It set out a vision for decarbonising the steel industry by 2035, subject to Government support, and made several recommendations for creating a supportive business environment to attract investment into Net Zero steel production.

The UK steel sector:  

  • Produces 6Mt of crude steel a year, around 70% of the UK’s annual requirement (annual demand of 8.9Mt)  
  • Employs 39,800 people directly in the UK and supports a further 50,000 in supply chains  
  • The median steel sector salary is £39,637, 43% higher than the UK national median and 56% higher than the regional median in Wales, and Yorkshire & Humberside, where its jobs are concentrated  
  • Directly contributes £2.9 billion to UK GDP and supports a further £3.8 billion  
  • Directly contributes £4 billion to the UK’s balance of trade  
  • 96% of steel used in construction and infrastructure in the UK is recovered and recycled to be used again and again. 

For further information about the steel industry, please see the 2023 press packWhy the UK needs a strong steel sector or the 2023 UK Steel Key Statistics report.

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