Carbon mineralisation in the cement & concrete industry

Published 23 May 2023

To mitigate CO2 emissions from cement production, the cement and concrete industry can implement carbon capture and utilisation technologies such as mineral carbonation. While they present challenges, these technologies also offer the potential to deliver significant reductions in CO2 emissions and improve the industry’s sustainability. By Maciej Zajac, Jan Skocek and Mohsen Ben Haha, Heidelberg Materials, Germany.

Figure 1: cement and concrete value chain including the carbonation technologies and circular economy aspects

Cement production is associated with hard-to-abate CO2 emissions since a major part of the emissions originates from the calcination process of the raw material. At the same time, decarbonising cement and concrete production is of utmost importance as concrete is the second-most consumed material in the world after water and indispensable for modern society. Carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) technologies can mitigate CO2 emissions from cement production. As CCUS technologies are a rather new approach in the industry, this article discusses the potential application of carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) technologies in the cement industry, focussing on mineral carbonation in the cement industry, their benefits and the challenges that need to be addressed.

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