A Net-Zero World Needs Zero-Carbon Concrete


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A sustainable, zero-carbon global economy will, literally and figuratively, rest on concrete. It is the world’s most-used building material. It is ubiquitous, versatile, affordable, durable, strong and recyclable – and is the second-most consumed substance in the world, after water. It will provide the foundations for our green energy systems, for climate-resilient infrastructure, for safe, healthy, and secure housing, for clean water and for low-carbon transportation around the world. It will be central to meeting many of the world’s Sustainable Development Goals.

But concrete has a significant carbon challenge. The concrete and cement sector currently accounts for 7% of global carbon emissions – predominantly from the chemical reaction that essentially turns limestone into cement, but also from the energy used to produce the high temperatures needed to make it, as well as a smaller amount from its transportation. To meet the needs of a growing, more urbanised, and affluent global population, production is forecast to grow by as much as 38% by 2050 if no intervention is made to use it more efficiently through design, re-use and recycling.

The industry has long recognised it needs to act. Since 1990, it has reduced the carbon intensity of its product by 20%. Last year, the Global Cement and Concrete Association (GCCA) published its Climate Ambition Statement, which sets a target of delivering carbon-neutral concrete by 2050. It brought together 40 of the world’s leading cement and concrete companies (accounting for around 40% of global clinker production), signing up for what will be a challenging transition to eliminate the sector’s climate impact.

For more information: https://hakangurdal.com/blog/gcca-and-world-economic-forum-launch-concrete-action-for-climate/

Source: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2021/07/a-net-zero-world-needs-net-zero-concrete/

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