European cement industry gears up for 2050 Carbon Neutrality

12/05/2020

New Roadmap sets vision for a carbon neutral cement-concrete value chain by 2050

Today, CEMBUREAU, the European Cement Association, publishes its new Carbon Neutrality Roadmap, setting out its ambition to reach net zero emissions along the cement and concrete value chain by 2050.

As Europe begins its green recovery, the significance of this moment for our sector is huge. This is our response to the EU Green Deal – we have a plan and are ready to make the leap.” said Raoul de Parisot, President of CEMBUREAU.

CEMBUREAU’s Carbon Neutrality Roadmap looks at how CO2 emissions can be reduced by acting at each stage of the value chain – clinker, cement, concrete, construction and (re)carbonation – to achieve zero net emissions by 2050. It quantifies the role of each technology in providing CO2 emissions savings, making concrete political and technical recommendations to support this objective.

To get there, the sector will need decisive political action from the EU in some key areas, including:

  • The development of a pan-European CO2 transportation and storage network;
  • Decisive action on circular economy to support the use of non-recyclable waste and biomass waste in cement production;
  • Ambitious policies to reduce European building’s CO2 footprint, based on a life-cycle approach, that incentivise the market uptake of low-carbon cements;
  • A level playing field on carbon, regulatory certainty and an ambitious industrial transformation agenda.

By 2030, CEMBUREAU aspires to be in line with the Paris Agreement’s two degrees scenario, reducing CO2 emissions by 30% for cement and 40% down the value chain.

Koen Coppenholle, Chief Executive of CEMBUREAU, said “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.”

 

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Joseph Meaden
Communications Manager
j.meaden@cembureau.eu

About CEMBUREAU
The European Cement Association based in Brussels is the representative organisation of the cement industry in Europe. Currently, its Full Members are the national cement industry associations and cement companies of the European Union (except for Malta and Slovakia) plus the UK, Norway, Switzerland and Turkey. Croatia and Serbia are Associate Members of CEMBUREAU. A cooperation agreement has been concluded with Vassiliko Cement in Cyprus and the Cement Association of Ukraine. More information is available at www.cembureau.eu.


About CEMBUREAU’s Carbon Neutrality Roadmap

Link to key documents

You can find the full CEMBUREAU Carbon Neutrality Roadmap and Executive Summary here.

Key findings & content

CEMBUREAU’s Carbon Neutrality Roadmap looks at how the European cement industry can reduce its carbon emissions by 2050, and align with the objectives of the European Green Deal. It demonstrates that reaching net zero emissions along the cement and concrete value chain is achievable by 2050.  

To elaborate the roadmap, experts from the European cement industry have looked in detail at the role of key technologies in reducing emissions at each stage of the cement and concrete value chain. CO2 emissions can indeed be reduced by acting at each stage of the value chain – clinker, cement, concrete, construction and (re)carbonation – to achieve zero net emissions by 2050. This will require the deployment of existing and new technologies. These include for instance 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. Our Carbon Neutrality Roadmap looks in detail at the role of these technologies in reducing emissions at each stage of the cement and concrete value chain.

CEMBUREAU’s Carbon Neutrality Roadmap contains both technical and policy recommendations which will be pivotal in reaching this objective.

It also features a 2030 objective. By this date, CEMBUREAU aspires to be in line with the Paris Agreement’s two degrees scenario, by reducing CO2 emissions by 30% for cement and 40% down the value chain.

Previous roadmaps from CEMBUREAU

The European cement industry has actively worked on reducing emissions for a long time. Since 1990, it has reduced its CO2 relative emissions by about 15%. CEMBUREAU elaborated a Roadmap in 2013 setting an 80% CO2 reduction target for 2050. The Roadmap was complemented in 2018 by the “5C approach” that promotes a collaborative approach along the clinker-cement-concrete-construction-carbonation value chain involving all actors to help turn the low carbon vision into reality.

The publication of the European Green Deal and its setting-up of a 2050 carbon neutrality objective are game changers and require an ambitious vision from the cement industry. In December 2019, the CEMBUREAU Board therefore agreed to issue a new roadmap looking at how to reach carbon neutrality down the cement and concrete value chain. 

Next steps

CEMBUREAU intends to present and discuss this roadmap with a variety of stakeholders, from policy-makers to the entire construction sector and civil society. We also intend to periodically review the progress made in reducing emissions where monitoring is, in certain cases, already possible. As this is an evolving document, we will also track progress made in developing policies to support these objectives.

Click here to download the Press release in pdf