The global economy faces the challenge of transforming and decarbonizing all sectors, including the industrial sector.
The European Union's challenge is to achieve total decarbonization by 2050. To achieve this, it has launched the European Green Deal. Within this framework, it has recently launched the Net Zero Industry Act, which aims to expand the development of technologies that are key to achieving climate neutrality and to address the competitiveness of European industry versus the U.S.-driven Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).
The most energy-demanding industrial sectors are the chemicals and refining, cement, and food industries. They are followed by iron and steel, and the paper industry.
Depending on the type of industry, different policies and technologies will have to be applied, responding to the complexities of decarbonizing their industrial processes and energy use. The solution is not a general one, since it is not the same to decarbonize an industry that requires intensive energy consumption to meet its thermal needs as another where the option of electrification may be more viable.
The scenarios suggest that current technologies will not be able to meet the decarbonization targets, so it will be necessary to develop innovative technologies and solutions on a large scale.