EGA begins supplying aluminium made using solar energy and recycled metal to BMW

Metal, called CelestiAL-R, significantly reduces carbon dioxide emissions from production process, company says

Emirates Global Aluminium is looking to decarbonise its operations. Source: Mubadala
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Emirates Global Aluminium, the UAE’s largest industrial company outside the oil and gas sector, has begun supplying aluminium made using solar power and recycled metal to BMW.

The German car maker has been using the aluminium, called CelestiAL-R, to manufacture electric drivetrain housings, engine components and large-scale structural parts since the beginning of the year, EGA said on Thursday.

“BMW Group’s demand for the highest quality metal produced in the most responsible way has accelerated our progress in sustainability,” said EGA chief executive Abdulnasser bin Kalban.

“Our goal is to steadily increase the proportion of recycled metal in CelestiAL-R, to further reduce the carbon intensity of our metal and thereby the cars we drive,” he said.

CelestiAL solar aluminium blended with recycled metal significantly reduces carbon dioxide emissions in metal production, reaching less than four tonnes of CO2 equivalent per tonne of aluminium, depending on the alloy used, EGA said.

In January, EGA teamed up with beverage producers, can makers and waste management companies to launch an aluminium recycling initiative in the UAE.

The Aluminium Recycling Coalition aims to drive a “step-change” in the Emirates by promote aluminium recycling by consumers, particularly beverage cans, EGA said at the time.

Last year, EGA announced plans to build an aluminium recycling plant with an annual capacity of 150,000 tonnes as it looks to decarbonise its operations.

It was also the first Middle East-based company to join the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative, a global body that sets sustainability standards for the industry.

EGA, one of the world’s largest aluminium producers, has smelters in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, an alumina refinery in Abu Dhabi and a bauxite mine in Guinea.

The UAE is the fifth-largest aluminium producing country in the world. EGA’s aluminium is the biggest made-in-the-UAE export after oil and gas and is shipped to more than 50 countries.

In November, EGA purchased clean energy certificates for 1.1 million megawatt hours of electricity supplied by the Emirates Water and Electricity Company.

The certificates track the use of solar power from Noor Abu Dhabi, one of the world’s largest single-site solar power plants.

Updated: June 15, 2023, 8:30 AM