A new process is being developed that could enable Europe’s cement and lime industries to significantly reduce their environmental footprint through carbon capture and storage (CCS).
A pilot plant, hosted by Heidelberg Cement at Lixhe in Belgium, can capture more than 95% of the process CO2 emissions from both industries without significant energy or capital costs.
The Low Emissions Intensity Lime And Cement (LEILAC) project aims to help the European construction industry reach ambitious 2050 emissions reductions targets by reducing the environmental impact of a cement sector which accounts for around 5% of global CO2 emissions.
The LEILAC consortium, led by the Carbon Trust, Hiedelberg Cement, Cemex, and Tarmac, is being supported by the EU’s Horizon 2020 research programme.
Two-thirds of CO2 emissions from cement and lime production are generated through the breakdown of limestone into lime and CO2 in furnaces.
The new approach re-engineers the existing process flows and it is capable of capturing almost pure CO2 released from the limestone – potentially with no additional energy costs or environmental impact.
Running for five years from 2016 to 2020, the project team comprises leading industrial, technology and research & development partners. The pilot plant will be hosted by Heidelberg Cement at Lixhe in Belgium.
This €21m project has received €12m of funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under a grant agreement. The balance of the funds will be provided by the consortium partners.