Status and prospects of co-processing of waste in EU cement plants

15/05/2017

The EU cement industry already uses more than 40% fuels derived from waste and biomass in supplying the thermal energy to the grey clinker making process. Although the choice for this so-called alternative fuels (AF) is typically cost driven, other factors are becoming more important. Use of AF provides benefits for both society and the company: CO2-emissions are lower than with fossil fuels, waste can be co-processed in an efficient and sustainable manner and the demand for certain virgin materials can be reduced. Yet there are large differences in the share of AF used between the European Union (EU) member states. Clearly, the societal benefits can be enlarged if more member states increase their AF share. In this study Ecofys assess the barriers and opportunities for further uptake of AF in 14 EU member states. Ecofys found that local factors constrain the market potential to a much larger extent than the technical and economic feasibility of the cement industry itself. In this summary they present the overall findings. The detailed assessments are available in separate cases studies.