White Paper: the potential for circular carbon in the Dutch industry


The S2C-project aimed to tackle the significant CO2 emissions generated by the steel and chemical industries. By connecting the carbon pathways of these fossil-intensive sectors, the S2C project has explored a new carbon value chain, enabling the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions for both sectors. The key findings are presented in this White Paper.

A consortium consisting of the Institute for Sustainable Process Technology (ISPT), Dow Benelux, ArcelorMittal, Tata Steel, Ghent University, and TNO has been working on the Steel2Chemicals (S2C) project since November 2018.

From Steel Gas Carbons to Chemical Feedstock 

Traditionally, the steel, chemicals, and plastics industries heavily rely on fossil fuels as both an energy source and raw material, contributing substantially to global CO2 emissions. The S2C project therefore sought to address this issue by converting the carbon in steel gas into liquid hydrocarbons, specifically naphtha, which can be utilized as a feedstock for chemical production processes. Through the removal of carbon atoms from steel gas and the addition of hydrogen (H2), a mixture of hydrocarbons (CxHy), including the naphtha intermediate feedstock, can be produced for plastic manufacturing. 

Implementation costs are lower than taking no action at all

The key findings are presented in this White Paper, which outlines the outcomes of the pilot project and modelling analysis. First and foremost, the pilot successfully converted the input steel gases into naphtha, showcasing a promising interconnection with potential mutual climate benefits. However, the pilot also highlighted several new process technology challenges. All findings contribute to a comprehensive understanding of carbon reduction, comparing alternatives and selecting optimizations.

Furthermore, the study reveals that the implementation costs of the project are lower than the alternative of taking no action and having to purchase EU emission allowances. 

The pioneering Steel2Chemicals project is a perfect mirror of what industry must achieve in the coming era.

Kees Biesheuvel ISPT’s Program director Circular Carbon and Innovation Manager at Dow Terneuzen  

Explore the findings

By actively addressing the CO2 emissions in the steel and chemical sectors, the S2C project showcases the potential for sustainable and innovative solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This collaborative effort among leading industry players, knowledge institutes, and academia paves the way for a more environmentally conscious and economically viable future. 


This project is co-funded by TKI-E&I with the supplementary grant 'TKI- Toeslag' for Topconsortia for Knowledge and Innovation (TKI’s) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy.