Conserving resources, easing the pressure on the climate, protecting the landscape and environment

Environmental and climate protection

To produce, recycle and further process aluminum in the most environmentally friendly way possible.

Environmental and climate protection is part of the corporate philosophy and is practiced at all levels and by all employees at TRIMET. This includes the responsible use of the environment and resources, the protection of the climate and the maximum reduction of waste and emissions.

TRIMET is pursuing the goal of climate-neutral aluminum production by 2045.

All TRIMET sites give high priority to efforts to increase energy efficiency and operate certified management systems in accordance with DIN EN ISO 50001. Furthermore, work is being done on the development of an inert anode in cooperation with Saarland University (USAAR). (call for tender)

Energy consumption
With its “virtual battery,” TRIMET is testing a method developed by the family-owned company that makes the electrolysis process more flexible and thus adapts aluminium production to the fluctuating power supplied by wind and photovoltaic systems.

Energy consumption

Electricity is an important raw material for aluminum production and by far the biggest factor influencing the CO2 footprint of aluminum. TRIMET therefore supports the expansion of power supply from wind and solar power with new processes and technical innovations. With the shutdown capability of our aluminum smelters and their alignment with primary control power standards, we are helping to stabilize the power grid and drive the transformation to power supply from renewable energy sources.

With a process developed by TRIMET, we have succeeded in revolutionizing the electrolysis process to adapt aluminum production to the fluctuating power supply from wind and photovoltaic plants with flexible load management.

Production
New busbar systems in electrolysis reduce CO2 emissions

Production

In our aluminum smelters, foundries and remelting plants we continuously identify and exploit potential for increasing energy efficiency and reducing emissions. In primary aluminum production, we are driving forward the networking and digitization of processes and experimenting with superconductor technology for loss-free power lines. In addition, TRIMET is developing a new electrolytic cell that releases oxygen instead of carbon dioxide during operation, thus enabling aluminum production without direct CO2 emissions.  

By using state-of-the-art burner technology, we are also reducing emissions in our smelters and anode factories. We are also preparing our foundries and remelting plants for the use of hydrogen-containing process gas, which will significantly reduce direct greenhouse gas emissions.

Material cycles
95 percent production scrap enters the recycling process

Material cycles

At TRIMET, recycling goes hand in hand with disposal. We recycle around 95 percent of the residual materials generated in the production process ourselves or send them for external recycling. This also includes the residual materials collected by the filter systems in our production plants. Even the process heat from our electrolysis furnaces is used.

In Voerde, we make it available to neighboring commercial operations as energy, while at the other sites we are preparing to decouple it as district heating.

Recycling
Primary aluminum heated to 900° degrees is used to melt down aluminum scrap

Recycling

TRIMET uses the heat of primary aluminum to melt down aluminum scrap at its foundry in Essen, saving the energy needed for melting.

Processing aluminum scrap for recycling requires only five percent of the energy needed to produce primary aluminum.

Transport
Resource-saving transport, whether the workforce rides their bikes to work or the liquid metal is transported to the customer by truck.

Transport

The routes taken by our products and raw materials have an impact on their climate footprint. We see transport as a factor in sustainable action. As a local materials supplier we are also close to our customers. We can therefore supply them with aluminum in liquid form. The short distances and the fact that the raw material is not melted down again saves energy in two ways. The raw materials for aluminum production reach the TRIMET sites by ship or rail, not by road.

TRIMET promotes climate-friendly mobility among its employees through targeted incentives. Charging stations for e-vehicles are available at the Essen, Hamburg and Voerde sites, and anyone who wants to can use a leased bicycle to get to work via JobRad - even in their free time.

Research and development
Today's product design starts with the development of alloys with high recycled content.

Research and development

The development of resource-saving materials and machining processes is a focal point of research at TRIMET. Among other things, the colleagues are working intensively on providing sophisticated aluminum alloys with a high recycled content for various areas of application.

In addition, research at TRIMET also takes on overarching tasks: The company's own Laboratory for Environment and Metal Analysis (LUMA) makes a significant contribution to monitoring compliance with all relevant environmental parameters.

Landscape preservation
At our sites, we take care of the issues of nature conservation, environmental protection, the use of natural resources

Landscape preservation

TRIMET assumes responsibility for a livable environment at its sites. For example, the company is establishing large-scale climate tree plantations in Essen and Voerde. They bind CO2 emissions and thus complement the measures for climate-friendly aluminum production. At the same time, they promote biodiversity.

In Essen, TRIMET supports the renaturation of the Emscher River. By establishing a separate wastewater system, the company is participating in the development of a local recreation area for the northern Ruhr region.

Other measures
We provide clean air to breathe – and not just at the Voerde site.

Other measures

  • The company’s own laboratory for environment and metal analytics, known as LUMA, makes a substantial contribution to monitoring compliance with all relevant environmental parameters.
  • The brief information | Climate change mitigation measures provide an overview of sustainability and carbon emissions at the Essen site. 
  • With the JobRad scheme, TRIMET gives its employees the opportunity to ride a leased bicycle whenever they want: to work, in everyday life, while on vacation, or for sport.
  • TRIMET grows extensive climate tree plantations at its production sites to bind carbon emissions and thus complement the measures aimed at achieving climate-friendly aluminium production.