COP26: call for action on cement emissions

At COP26 the World Cement Association will outline three key actions governments can take to accelerate the cement industry’s progress towards net zero.

WCA head Ian Riley will outline how action in three key areas could save around 900 million tonnes of CO2 annually by 2030. The WCA says the cement industry currently contributes around 7% to global carbon emissions.

Riley will tell delegates at COP26 that not only is a net-zero cement industry achievable, new technologies for carbon-negative concrete are emerging that can remove CO2 that is already in the atmosphere. But for this to happen, governments around the world need to take action in three key areas, to encourage faster adoption of low-carbon technologies:

Promote a market for low-carbon concrete by encouraging its use in publicly-funded building projects

Review and update product standards to allow low-carbon concrete to be used in a wider range of applications

Create the right market incentives for developing and using low-carbon cement and concrete technologies, via carbon pricing, subsidies or other economic mechanisms

“The pathways to net zero will be different for every cement plant. However, there are a few key measures which governments can adopt that will have a rapid and lasting impact on the pace of global uptake of all these measures ,” explains Ian Riley.

“These measures can be implemented at low cost and will stimulate innovation and rapid scaling of new technologies. For governments looking for effective measures they can take today that will help deliver major and lasting emissions reductions in the next decade, the cement and concrete industry is a great place to start,” he added.