• First demonstration of carbon capture and utilisation for the cement industry a success

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

A consortium of five companies – CarbonCure Technologies, Cementos Argos, Praxair, Sustainable Energy Solutions and Kline Consulting – have successfully demonstrated the first cement plant with carbon capture and utilisation (CCU). Using Sustainable Energy Solutions’ technology to capture carbon from Cementos Argos’s Roberta cement plant in the US state of Alabama, Praxiar then transported the gas to another of Cementos Argos’s plants in Atlanta, Georgia. At that plant, the CO2 was used as a feedstock by applying CarbonCure’s mineralisation technology to produce more cement for use in a local construction project, completing the utilisation process.  The demonstration was a landmark, as the cement industry is responsible for around 5% of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, and it is estimated that CCS or CCU must be employed to capture around 56% of emissions from the cement industry (with other reductions being achieved through efficiencies and material changes). According to CarbonCure, its technology is not only ready, but scalable, and offers a means to extract value from a gas which is usually considered simply a waste product. It is less clear, however, if the entire process (including the capture and transport elements) would be economically advantageous at this stage, though, like all carbon-related technologies, a carbon price would surely help to shift the balance. In the meantime, CarbonCure will be attracting much interest from around the world.