Global CCS efforts accelerate

Global CCS efforts accelerate
18 December 2020

This week Norcem (HeidelbergCement) received the Norwegian Parliament's carbon capture and storage (CCS) investment approval for a full-scale CCS facility at the company's Brevik cement plant in Norway. This is expected to be the first carbon capture facility for cement production and is scheduled for start-up in 2024. It is just one of many attempts to find suitable solutions for carbon capture at cement plants. 

HeidelbergCement heads up the Low Emissions Intensity Lime and Cement (LEILAC 1) pilot project to capture COat the Lixhe cement plant in Belgium. Cemex and Tarmac are also among the partners in this project which aims to separate CO2 at 18,000tpa using magnesium minerals. Meanwhile, the EUR16m LEILAC 2 project aims to capture 100,000tpa of CO2 from 2023 and includes support from IKN and Cimpor.

LehighCement (HeidelbergCement group) is also working on a feasibility study for a commercial-scale CCS plant at its Edmonton plant in Alberta, Canada. CCS Knowledge Centre provides an outline of this project in the January 2021 issue of International Cement Review. The study aims to target 90-95 per cent CO2 capture.

Cemex sees 2021 as a big year for CO2 capture
One of the most keenly anticipated projects will be the Cemex Ventures' industrial-scale pilot project with Carbon Clean. Carbon Clean's CDRMax™ technology will be tested at a Cemex facility in the 1Q21. Cemex will advance its carbon capture, utilisation and sequestration (CCUS) experience in the USA with Membrane Technology & Research Inc at the Cemex Balcones cement plant in Texas, USA. Carbon Upcycling Technologies will process the captured CO2 to produce nanomaterials and low-CO2 concretes.

LafargeHolcim is also advancing its pursuit of CCUS with more than 20 projects around the world. It has formed partnerships with Svante and Total on its CO2MENT project at the Richmond cement plant in British Columbia, Canada. The plant will demonstrate the utilisation of captured CO2, such as injecting it into low-carbon fuels, CO2 concrete and fly ash with assistance from Solidia Technologies.

Meanwhile, the CO2MENT project is also testing an end-of-pipe solution for CO2 removal and reuse from the Holcim's Portland cement plant in Florence, Colorado, USA, where captured CO2 will be stored permanently underground. 

European progress    
Other European projects for LafargeHolcim include the Westküeste 100 project at LafargeHolcm's Lägerdorf cement plant in Germany, which will transform captured CO2 into synthetic fuel for aviation fuel. Meanwhile, the ECCO2 project aims to collect 10 per cent of the 700,000t of CO2 emissions at the Carboneras cement plant in Almeria, Spain, and the Mannersdorf plant will run the 'Carbon2ProductAustria' project, which aims to capture all of the plant's 700,000tpa of emitted CO2.

Another European initiative is the CLEANKER calcium looping (CaL) technology that is being trialled by Buzzi Unicem at its Vernasca cement plant in Piacenza, Italy. IKN and Italcementi (HeidelbergCement Group) are among the consortium of 13 partners involved in this project.

The summer of 2020 also saw the initiation of Carbon8's carbon capture technology at Vicat’s Montalieu plant in France. The 'catch4climate' project is a collaboration between Dyckerhoff (Buzzi Unicem group), HeidelbergCement, Vicat at the Schwenk Zement's Mergelstetten cement plant.

Asian investments
Asia has also seen pilot projects, such as Taiwan Cement's Heping plant, which has an ambitious target of reducing CCS to US$25/t and down to US$10-15/t by 2025. Dalmia Cement announced in 2019 that it would build a 0.5Mt carbon capture facility at its Tamil Nadu plant. It aims for this project to start up by 2022. Anhui Conch also began its demonstration plant in 2018 at the Baimashan plant in Wuhan province, China. 

The cement industry needs to make CCS and CCUS not only affordable and workable but up-scaled and widely available. While some of the technologies are well-practised in the power and steel sectors, there is still much to discover about high capture rates in the cement sector and on an industrial scale. 

Published under Cement News