Industry decarbonisation

Cementa and Vattenfall are pioneering the production of fossil-free cement

Fossil-free cement is happening.

Climate change news weaves through our daily lives. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed, yet positive progress is happening. For example, replacing conventional fuels with fossil-free electricity can radically decrease emissions from the heating process of cement production. In the CemZero project, Swedish cement company Cementa, part of Heidelberg Cement Group, and Vattenfall have conducted a pilot study on electrified cement production aiming to produce cement with zero carbon emissions by 2030, leading to a 5% reduction of Sweden’s total CO2 emissions.

CemZero's vision is electrified cement production supplied by fossil-free energy

The demand for cement to build new roads, apartments, bridges and harbours continues to increase and advances in technology are crucial to achieve radical emissions reductions in cement production. Electrification within the industry is an important element in the transition to sustainable urban development.

The CemZero partnership started in 2017, when Cementa and Vattenfall launched a pilot study to investigate the feasibility of electrifying the cement production process. Cementa had already worked to decrease emissions from its production, resulting in a 15% lower climate impact than the global average, but saw the need to explore a more radical technology shift.

The objective of the CemZero project is to replace traditional fuels in the cement production process with fossil-free electricity. 

The pilot study in 2017 confirmed that electrification is a viable alternative. Based on these results, Cementa and Vattenfall decided in January 2019 to continue their cooperation on the CemZero project with investigations on the potential for constructing a pilot plant for a climate smart and sustainable cement production process in Sweden. The Swedish Energy Agency has also played an important role in the success of the project and has co-financed the feasibility study.

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More about Cementa

Read more about Swedish cement company Cementa, part of Heidelberg Cement Group.

Cement factory in Degerhamn, Sweden. Photo: Cementa

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