The SIJ Group receives an international award for a sustainable project of utilising waste heat for heating towns

Ljubljana, Tuesday, 23 May 2017 – The SIJ Group received an international award of the International Stainless Steel Forum (ISSF) for sustainable development for a project of utilising waste heat for the district heating of the town of Ravne na Koroškem.

The International Stainless Steel Forum (ISSF), a non-profit research organisation, has once again declared the best practices in the area of workplace safety and sustainable development on a global level. The project of utilising waste heat for heating the towns in which the companies of the SIJ group operate has been recognised as the third best project in the worldwide competition of projects in the area of sustainable development: “This recognition awarded to us by our primary activity, the steel industry, has a special value to us. It confirms that our innovative focus is going in the right direction. The SIJ Group recognises the immense potential of re-using the waste heat, which is the first project of its type in Slovenia. Our steel plants are located next to towns which is why we expect that the industrial waste heat in these towns will become a complementary, or in some cases even primary source of heating in the next few years,” said Samo Lečnik, Head of Energy in the SIJ Group.

The objective of recognising the best practices from around the world is to ensure a platform where the best practices of sustainable development and workplace safety can be spread, and to encourage the steel industry and the public to think in depth about sustainability issues and safety at work.
The SIJ Group's project is an innovative example of energy transfer into the circular economy and is a first example of utilising industrial waste heat for the needs of district heating in our country. It enables utilisation of the part of waste heat generated as waste heat in the process of electric arc furnaces in the steel plant of SIJ Metal Ravne. The SIJ Group handed over 5,116 megawatt hours of heat to the energy supplier for heating in 2016, which is around 21 percent of all the necessary heat for the heating of the town of Ravne na Koroškem. A part of this energy was used for heating the swimming pools of the Ravne na Koroškem Sports Centre as a donation of the SIJ Group. With this mode of operation the SIJ Group is also reducing the amount of greenhouse gases (by estimated 1,500 tons annually), while SIJ Metal Ravne also saves some electrical energy due to the lower load on the cooling system of the beforementioned furnace.
The excellency of this project was already recognised by the Slovenian and European public, as it became the winning project of the newspaper Finance for an environmentally friendly service in 2015, and has received the awards TARAS 2016 and EUREM in 2016. In 2016 it was also awarded a gold medal for innovation on a regional level and a bronze medal for innovation on a national level by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia.


The SIJ Group is the largest Slovenian vertically integrated metallurgical group, whose products occupy leading positions on the European and global niche steel markets. The Group consists of two core business areas - metallurgical (core business) and food processing industry (acquisition of Perutnina Ptuj Group), more than 50 subsidiaries in Europe, USA and Asia, and around 7,200 employees.
In 2016, the SIJ Group generated sales revenues of EUR 842.7 million, an operating profit (EBITDA) of EUR 127.1 million and a net profit of EUR 51.3 million.