The G7 has led the world in developing standards, both via its members’ national standard bodies and participation in international standard-setting organisations, and as part of various private sector initiatives. The Group’s experience of pioneering efforts to initiate and propagate international collaboration mean that it can have a major impact on the rest of the world.

Time is of the essence. Many components of the policy toolbox for tackling emissions from heavy industries, as set out in the IEA’s report for the 2022 G7 Presidency of Germany, rely on internationally coherent definitions of GHG emissions performance. Establishing an agreed emissions measurement methodology for the steel industry – and associated data collection frameworks – will be key to such efforts, and they should be in place by the middle of this decade. To this end, the IEA has developed five recommendations for consideration by G7 members.

  1. Avoid the creation of new emissions measurement methodologies for the steel industry and agree to focus efforts on tailoring existing international protocols, beginning with the five key emissions measurement methodologies identified in this report. While acknowledging that existing methodologies require amendment and revision to achieve compatibility and fitness for purpose in the context of a net zero steel industry, the ISO 14404 series, ISO 20915, the worldsteel CO2 and LCI methodologies and the ResponsibleSteel International Standard V2.0 (Principle 10) constitute a solid foundation for future work. These methodologies should be the focus of G7 members’ initial efforts to achieve robust, transparent, and comparable emissions intensity data for steel production and products internationally. This initial list does not preclude the possibility of additions if deemed important by stakeholders engaged in revising the methodologies, but the list should remain focused to avoid unnecessarily prolonging the process.
  2. Endorse the “net zero emissions measurement principles” outlined in this report as the guiding ambition for efforts to revise existing measurement methodologies, thereby promoting convergence towards best practice in the medium term. Sufficient interoperability should be achieved by the end of the next systematic review of the ISO 14404 and 20915 series, or by the end of 2025 at the latest. Notably, revisions should aim to achieve comparable emissions intensity data for crude steel production and intermediate products, for all existing and emerging process technologies, while noting the production route and the quantities of scrap and iron used.
  3. Engage actively in the amendment and revision processes for the existing five key emissions measurement methodologies, wherever possible. In dialogue with national standards bodies, G7 members should commit to engage actively in the forthcoming review processes of the relevant committees of the International Organization for Standardization (e.g. ISO/TC 17), with the aim of revising the ISO 14404 series and ISO 20915 standards in line with the “net zero emissions measurement principles” outlined in this report. G7 members should also strongly encourage steel producers operating within their jurisdictions to engage actively in the review processes and data collection exercises of worldsteel and ResponsibleSteel wherever possible, thereby supporting efforts to revise these methodologies in the pursuit of greater interoperability.
  4. Commit to implement a Global Data Collection Framework for steel production and product emissions in accordance with the “net zero data collection principles” outlined in this report. The initial phase of implementation – using the existing worldsteel CO2 (production) and LCI (product) methodologies – should be completed by the end of 2024, with the aim being an initial dataset for a high proportion of plants located in G7 member countries. This data would be submitted to one or more co-ordinating organisations for regional and site-based analysis, to further support the revision process. Potential candidates for the initial co-ordinating function include the IEA’s Working Party on Industrial Decarbonisation, the Clean Energy Ministerial’s Industrial Deep Decarbonisation Initiative and the OECD Steel Committee. The interim phase of implementation, in which multiple emissions measurement methodologies are used to compile increasingly interoperable datasets as the measurement methodologies are successively reviewed and amended, should be completed by the end of 2025. The transition to the final phase of implementation – ongoing tracking and measurement using interoperable and agreed measurement methodologies – should commence thereafter.
  5. Actively engage in inclusive technical dialogues and co-ordination activities for measurement methodologies and data collection for steel and other materials. The landscape of different initiatives is increasingly crowded, reflecting growing interest from multiple countries on the topic of industrial decarbonisation, but this also poses challenges for co-ordination. The Industrial Decarbonisation Agenda of the G7 remains a leading forum for dialogue between governments. However, the Group should also engage in other dialogues, to support progress among a wider set of countries and minimise duplication, and to further engage with industry and other non-governmental stakeholders. G7 members should join and/or actively engage in technical dialogues on measurement methodologies and data collection, seek synergies with existing national data collection efforts, and extend the current focus on steel to other materials. The discussions in these fora should be elevated to other high-level dialogues (notably the Climate Club and the Group of Twenty [G20]) when political agreement is both necessary and plausible. The Breakthrough Agenda can support co‑ordination to clarify the interactions between these various fora and initiatives.