TSMC, China Steel drive Taiwan's eco-industrial revolution

Vyra Wu, DIGITIMES Asia, Taipei 0

Credit: TSMC

As an export powerhouse with industrial products accounting for over half its GDP, Taiwan is accelerating its manufacturing sector towards an environmentally sustainable transformation.

Leading corporations like TSMC and China Steel Corporation (CSC) are spearheading this green initiative. They are fostering collaboration across upstream, midstream, and downstream sectors to curtail carbon emissions and construct eco-friendly supply chains, thereby bolstering Taiwan's competitiveness in the global net-zero transition.

Amy Tu, TSMC's Technical Manager, revealed that the tech giant initially targeted achieving 100% renewable energy usage by 2050 but has advanced that goal to 2040, charting a more proactive carbon reduction path. Uniquely, this objective transcends the typical Scope 1 and 2 operational emissions discussed globally by also encompassing Scope 3 management.

This monumental undertaking necessitates TSMC to rein in its emissions and account for those from its vast supply chain. To realize this aim, TSMC must rigorously slash carbon emissions through strategies like reducing chemical usage, optimizing manufacturing processes, and harnessing low-carbon energy sources – a feat demanding close cooperation with suppliers.

TSMC has formulated five major supply chain strategies ranging from improving carbon emission transparency to directly collaborating with vendors on carbon abatement initiatives. A dedicated green supply chain team now oversees carbon management tasks.

Bolstering suppliers' carbon stewardship capabilities, TSMC provides diverse support including data design and system platforms. Its pioneering "1+N Carbon Management" program integrates resources to assist suppliers across supply chain tiers with carbon management.

TSMC also aids vendors in strengthening carbon emission tracking abilities and jointly sets carbon reduction targets. The symbiotic partnership transcends carbon management, extending to green energy procurement and technical assistance.

TSMC spearheaded joint renewable energy purchasing by signing 20-year power purchase agreements with green energy developers, subscribing to 500 million kilowatt-hours annually while inviting suppliers to jointly purchase another 500 million – collectively abating 500,000 metric tons of carbon emissions yearly. This mutually reinforcing ecosystem nurtures sustainable supply chain development.

Concurrently, CSC is driving smart steel plants and green energy industry growth. Min Wu, General Manager of its Environmental Protection Department, underscored that "advanced premium steel" prioritizes enhancing steel quality over sheer output expansion to diminish emissions, and the green energy sector is poised to propel the steel industry's future advancement.

CSC is championing digital transformation, low-carbon transition, and supply chain modernization. Since 2006, it has collaborated with customers on boosting product quality and energy efficiency.

In 2022, it devised a carbon neutrality roadmap and formed a dedicated team to promote related endeavors. The steelmaker's low-carbon strategy incorporates energy efficiency optimization, renewable energy utilization, and R&D into technologies like charge of reduced iron for blast furnaces, replacing coal injection with hydrogen, co-producing steel and chemicals, and boosting scrap utilization.

Beyond curbing its own footprint, CSC assists supply chain partners with assessments and low-carbon transition. For customers, it offers regulatory analysis, carbon footprint assessments to aid Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) compliance, tailored energy-saving diagnoses with improvement recommendations, and collaborates to manufacture carbon-neutral steel products by offsetting emissions.

As Taiwan forges ahead on its green manufacturing crusade, synergistic efforts by industrial titans like TSMC and CSC are catalyzing transformation across entire supply chains. They are steering the nation towards a more sustainable industrial future on the global stage.