HeidelbergCement announced on June 2nd it decided to upgrade its cement facility in Slite on the Swedish island of Gotland into a carbon-neutral plant. The company is yet to select the carbon capture technology for the project.
It plans to capture the facility’s emissions of up to 1.8 million tons of carbon dioxide annually, from 2030 onwards. The emissions will be stored offshore permanently. The project is set to be the first carbon-neutral cement plant in the world.
“HeidelbergCement will be the leader in the global cement industry on its transformation path towards climate neutrality…Key for decarbonizing our industry is to find, apply and scale technical solutions for carbon capture and utilization or storage,” said Dr. Dominik von Achten, Chairman of the Managing Board of HeidelbergCement.
HeidelbergCement Initiative Accelerates Sweden’s Net Zero Path
The decarbonization of the Slite plant will help Sweden achieve its Paris Agreement ambitions. The facility produces 75% of the cement used for concrete production in the country, which is a game-changer for Sweden’s emissions reduction goals.
The company plans to build on the experience of the carbon capture plant it currently constructs at the Brevik cement facility in Norway. It is expected to capture 50% of the plant’s emissions or 400,000 tonnes annually from 2024 onwards.
According to the General Manager of HeidelbergCement Northern Europe – Giv Brantenberg, the planning for the carbon capture and storage CCS plant in Slite will benefit significantly from the know-how gained at Brevik.
The breakthrough project of one of the biggest manufacturers of building materials in the world is supposed to encourage other companies in the industry to follow up. The full-scale capturing of CO2 emissions from cement production facilities needs to increase significantly in order for the industry to cut down on its 8% annual contribution to global GHGs. This milestone is the first step towards achieving sizeable emission reduction and decarbonizing one of the most heavy-emissions industries in the world.