I highlighted the potential of Newport’s Orb steelworks as a producer of electrical steels for electric cars in a debate this week.
Speaking in a Westminster Hall debate on Net Zero Targets and Decarbonising Transport, I said “Electric vehicles need electrical steel, and the only electrical steel maker in the UK—the Orb works in Newport, which was owned by Tata—was mothballed just before Christmas. Does the right hon. Member agree that supporting our steel industry at this crucial time will be vital for an end-to-end supply chain in this country?”
Damian Hinds MP, the lead sponsor of the debate, responded by saying “Steel is of great importance, and the hon. Lady knows better than most people how important it is to our industrial base. It is also important to the development of many green technologies. As she knows, steel has its own challenges. It is a very energy-intensive sector; in time, hydrogen technologies and others might help in that regard, and we need to ensure that we maximise our efforts towards them.”
The Prime Minister has talked about Britain becoming a home for electric vehicles, but the only site in the UK producing the electrical steels for electric vehicle motors – Orb in Newport – is currently mothballed. We need to invest in our steel industry if we are to be a nation of exporters, rather than just importers.