A team of five companies led by CarbonCure Technologies has unveiled the world’s first integrated CO2 capture and utilisation (CCU) from cement for concrete production.
Cement is the binding agent that when added with ingredients like sand, aggregate, admixtures, and water, is used to form concrete products, which is the most widely used building material in the world.
The project demonstrates a turn-key solution for the cement and concrete industries that could create an opportunity to profitably capture and convert cement production CO2 emissions into value-added concrete for construction projects.
The project was an extension of Team CarbonCure’s participation in the $20 million NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE Challenge, which incentivizes and accelerates the development of integrated CCU technologies and new markets that convert CO2 emissions from coal and natural gas power generation into valuable products. Team CarbonCure took the additional step of demonstrating the potential of its CCU technologies using CO2 emissions the cement sector considering that cement production is responsible for 5% of global CO2 emissions and is expected to be both the earliest and largest market for CCU technologies.
The consortium believes this project is vitally important to the industry, since it demonstrates an immediately scalable and profitable low-cost CO2 utilisation solution that benefits each member of the value chain – from the cement producer through to the construction site. An integrated, scalable and cost-effective solution is essential for the industry to meet its WBCSD CSI low-carbon technology roadmap targets, while also creating value from CO2, which is typically considered a waste product.
The Global CO2 Initiative (GCI) estimates a potential $400B market opportunity for CO2 utilisation products in the concrete sector alone, with the prospect of reducing 1.4 gigatonnes of annual CO2 emissions by 2030.
The Cement Sustainability Initiative (CSI), a global effort by 23 major cement producers with operations in more than 100 countries who are responsible for 30% of the world’s cement production, has identified that carbon capture utilisation and storage (CCUS) technologies will be required to achieve 440 of the 790 megatonnes of annual CO2 reductions needed to meet the sector’s greenhouse gas targets. The global CO2 reduction potential of the CarbonCure portfolio of technologies exceeds the CSI CCUS targets by contributing between 550 to 700 megatonnes of annual reductions and creating $26 billion in new net production efficiencies.