Carbon capture is considered one of the key technologies in solving the COemission challenges in hard-to-abate sectors, like cement. At the same time, the logistics and infrastructure required depends on not only the industries themselves, but a wide range of governmental bodies and public interest’s organisations.

76% expects Carbon Capture to hit Cement by 2030 

Despite the practical challenges and massive investments needed for equipment and storage or further processing, 45% (66) of respondents expect carbon capture to be an industry standard in Cement by 2030.  Another 31% (46) expect that 10% of the industry will run carbon capture solutions by 2030.

“The results are interesting,” says Head of Sustainability at FLSmidth, Wouter de Groot. “The 76% shows an overwhelming confidence, considering the adoption rate of new technology in the industry, but also the infrastructure needed to handle the captured COwhether in storage and or utilisation”

What about the last 24% of respondents!?

Not everybody is onboard with the idea of carbon capture; 11% (16) of the respondents were a bit more reluctant – replying; “After we have flying cars”. And another 13% (19) responded; “What is carbon capture?”. “One of the respondents, answering; “After we have flying cars” is independent expert and consultant in sustainable buildings, energy efficiency and carbon reduction in cement sector, Krzysztof Starzyk.”


We reached out to Krzysztof to get an understanding of his hesitance towards carbon capture. “I don’t believe that COcapture and storage will be the norm in the cement industry on a large scale, in the long run, he says. “Solutions to reduce emissions from cement should be sought in reducing the contribution from the clinker production. Research and tests on alternative raw materials are looking promising – I am involved in some trials with volcanic material here in Poland that could prove very interesting. Clay calcinations is another option, Krzysztof concludes.  


 “The cement industry has always chased productivity gains and much innovation has been directed towards making processes more efficient. At the same time, the cement industry can at times be conservative and new technologies take time to get implemented. For instance; it took 30 years for the vertical roller mills (VRM) to become an industry standard. What is new is the accelerated pace and collective sense of urgency within the industry. Within that, we see a difference between clients located in carbon-regulated markets or based on infrastructure.  We are monitoring carbon capture and other sustainable initiatives very closely, as part of our MissionZero programme. And while CCUS is definitely one of those technology, we also see other, sometimes more directly feasible initiatives that can reduce COemissions such as calcined clay.” Wouter concludes.  

The survey was conducted from June 15 to 19 of this year. The LinkedIn survey tool is not scientifically based nor does the respondents represent the entire populations of followers of the Cement page on LinkedIn – the 145 respondents equals 0,5% of all followers (28.300). However, we do believe that there is no better place to raise such a question, then in one the largest forums of industry experts. 



Developments in Carbon Capture

A recent joint venture might give carbon capture momentum. Last month, Lafarge Zementwerke, a member of LafargeHolcim, OMV, VERBUND and Borealis co-sign a joint venture for the joint planning and construction of a full-scale plant by 2030 to capture CO2 and process it into synthetic fuels, plastics or other chemicals.  In Norway, carbon capture technology has been tested by cement maker Norcem at its Brevik cement production plant for the last 18 months and at Lehigh Cement, a unit of HeidelbergCement, a feasibility study is under way on a full-scale CCS facility at its plant in Edmonton, Alberta.  So, investments are being made, with expectation of a solution that will become commercially viable. 


MissionZero in Cement

The cement industry has always chased productivity gains and innovations has been directed towards making processes more efficient. Increased efficiency means less consumption of resources such as fuel and power, which is a key driver for sustainability. What is new is the accelerated pace and collective sense of urgency within the industry – reinforced by government investors and a proliferation of CO2 pricing. 

MissionZero is FLSmidth’s sustainability programme aimed at enabling our customers to move towards zero emissions and 100% fuel substitution by 2030. Read more about MissionZero here

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