Heidelberg Materials, a leading global building materials company, has announced the launch of its first carbon capture pilot in Bulgaria. The pilot will be conducted at the Devnya plant and will showcase the efficiency and scalability of Heidelberg’s innovative carbon-capture technology, known as OxyCal.
The commencement of the plant construction was commemorated with the attendance of Milena Stoycheva, the Bulgarian Minister of Innovation and Progress, as well as delegates from Heidelberg Materials and the local community.
The pilot unit, called ANRAV.beta, marks a significant milestone in the company’s larger ANRAV project in Bulgaria, which was announced at the beginning of 2023. The ANRAV project aims to implement large-scale carbon capture and storage technology in the region, highlighting Heidelberg Materials’ commitment to sustainability and reducing carbon emissions.
The OxyCal technology used in the pilot plant involves the addition of pure oxygen to the clinker-burning process, resulting in a CO2-rich flue gas that can be reused or safely stored. The pilot aims to prove the effectiveness of the technology and its potential application to other projects within the Heidelberg Group, such as Anthemis in Belgium.
This project is the first full-chain carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) initiative in Eastern Europe. With plans to start operations as early as 2028, ANRAV aims to capture and store 800,000 tonnes of CO2 annually.
The project has received significant support from the EU Innovation Fund, which has provided €190 million in funding. This financial backing from the EU will help unlock the potential for CCUS in Bulgaria and contribute to substantial CO2 emission reductions at the national level.
Dr. Nicola Kimm, the chief sustainability officer and member of the managing board at Heidelberg Materials, stated that this is a significant moment for the further development of CCUS technologies across Heidelberg Materials, adding that the pilot is an important step towards the company’s goal of offering fully decarbonized cement to its customers in Eastern Europe in the near future.