The world's biggest steelmaker, ArcelorMittal is planning to roll out a new sustainability programme across Europe. The company wants to secure ResponsibleSteel site certification for all of its flat products sites in Europe.

According to ArcelorMittal, the 12-month programme will enable each site to prove that its production processes meet rigorously defined standards across a broad range of social, environmental and governance criteria.

ResponsibleSteel is the industry’s first global multi-stakeholder standard and certification initiative, dedicated to defining and promoting responsible practice and aimed at improving climate change and GHG emissions, water stewardship and biodiversity, human rights and labour rights and community relations and business integrity.

To be awarded with ResponsibleSteel certification, each site will undergo a rigorous third-party audit with an independent Certification Committee making the final certification decision.

Geert Van Poelvoorde, CEO ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products, commented: “Responsible production techniques and high ethical and business standards have become increasingly important to our customers and consumers. It’s at the heart of how we do business, giving our customers the reassurance that we meet their sustainability expectations by meeting carbon, environmental and social standards at every stage of production.”

Mr Van Poelvoorde said he was confident that ArcelorMittal would secure certification across all of its flat products sites within the timeframe.

The first wave of auditing includes sites in Belgium, Germany, Spain and France with others to follow. After the initial phase, further ArcelorMittal sites around the world will be part of the programme.

In 2020, ResponsibleSteel will launch a standard for the certification of steel products, which will include stringent requirements for the raw materials supply chain. ArcelorMittal claims that it will continue to play an active role in developing this aspect of the programme.