The European Cement Association, Cembureau, this week published its new Carbon Neutrality Roadmap, laying out its vision along with policy recommendations required to help the industry reach net zero emissions across the cement and concrete value chain by 2050.
Before then, the Brussels-based trade body aspires to reduce CO2 emissions by 30% for cement and 40% down the value chain by 2030 in line with two degrees scenario of the Paris Agreement.
Cembureau stated the industry’s ambition for 2050 is achievable. Its roadmap examines every stage of the value chain -- clinker, cement, concrete, construction and (re)carbonation -- and how emissions can be reduced with each step by mid-century.
For the cement and concrete value chain to significantly cut emissions, a process that will require the deployment of existing and new technologies, the industry will need policy adjustments at the EU level.
Cembureau lists technologies such as the use of non-recyclable waste and biomass waste to replace fossil fuels, more energy-efficient kilns, the development of innovative low-clinker cements, the deployment of breakthrough carbon capture and storage/use technologies (CCUS) and optimised concrete mixes and building techniques, all of which should be supported by specific policies and investments, including state aid.
It further said it needs policies that make renewable energy affordable for the industry, calling for the sector’s electrification to be encouraged through tax exemptions or other compensation mechanisms.
“Cement and concrete are already enablers of a European Green Deal, through the building of sustainable energy and transport infrastructure. Carbon neutrality along our full value-chain will be a massive effort, but we are confident we can achieve it. Our sector has made significant progress and, with the right tools and support from the EU, we can go much further,” Cembureau chief executive Koen Coppenholle said.
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