Carbon-captured net-zero cement launches

Brevik cement plant (image credit: copyright Heidelberg Materials).

Heidelberg Materials is introducing a carbon-captured net-zero cement, said to be the world’s first, which will be available to customers in Europe. The product – to be marketed as evoZero – is described as having a net-zero footprint achieved through the application of carbon capture and storage technology at the Heidelberg Materials plant in Brevik, Norway, without compensation from credits generated outside the company’s value chain.

“Carbon capture and storage is a breakthrough technology for the building materials industry and we are frontrunners in deploying it at scale,” said Dr Dominik von Achten, Chairman of the Managing Board of Heidelberg Materials. He described the launch as “a paradigm shift in the decarbonisation of our sector”.

“Carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (CCUS) is a prerequisite for our industry to achieve Net Zero and vital to building the society of the future”, said Dr Nicola Kimm, Chief Sustainability Officer, who added that “evoZero contributes to both our own ambitious carbon reduction targets as well as those of our customers.”

The evoZero cement will be available in two versions, depending on the customer location: evoZero Carbon Captured Brevik is directly delivered from the Brevik CCS plant in Norway, achieving its netzero footprint over the entire life cycle. Customers in other European countries may choose evoZero Carbon Captured, which will be delivered from plants close-by, “while leveraging the unique carbon saving attributes realised in Brevik”. The evoZero Carbon Captured product is said to feature a net-zero footprint upon delivery.

For both products, Heidelberg says the carbon-capture attributes are transparent and traceable by harnessing the power of blockchain technology through which customers will receive a verifiable carbon proof for their evoZero purchase. Leveraging the use of well-established principles such as mass-balancing and book-and-claim, the carbon capture and emission accounting mechanisms have been independently reviewed by a third-party verifier.

Jon Morrish, Member of the Managing Board of Heidelberg Materials and responsible for the Group area Europe, said: “With evoZero, we now offer our customers across Europe a new and unique solution to strengthen their market position. evoZero enables them to implement innovative construction projects to actively shape the Green Transformation and to gain competitive advantages with their sustainability-focused stakeholders.”

Customers will benefit from complete flexibility and trusted product performance. As CCS technology will not change the chemical composition and performance of cement, evoZero comprises the full cement portfolio, from conventional highest strength CEM-I to CEM-III, regardless of weather conditions. As a result, evoZero can be used for all kinds of applications. evoZero products will be available across Europe. During the pre-selling phase now underway, customers can already place orders and secure the first batches of evoZero for their own sustainable building projects.

Brevik CCS is the world’s first carbon capture facility in a cement plant on a large scale. Mechanical completion of the facility is scheduled for the end of 2024. Once operational, 400,000 tonnes of CO₂ per year will be captured and stored, which corresponds to 50% of the plant’s emissions – and is equivalent to taking 180,000 cars off the road. Heidelberg Materials follows a clear, science-based approach to reduce its carbon footprint through the levers of product and process innovation as well as industrial-scale CCUS. With the CCUS projects already launched, the company aims to save 10 million tonnes of CO₂ cumulatively by 2030.