What Is Green Cement?

graphic of an orange and white cement plant on a floating patch of grass

As one of the most energy-intensive industries, cement plants consume around 100 kWh of electrical energy for each ton of their production. This can be counted yearly as over 6% of global energy consumption.

 In 2021, Over 4 billion metric tons of cement was produced. For every metric ton of cement produced, 0.6 to 1 ton of carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere. 

In 2002, cement emissions from making cement for buildings, roads, and other infrastructure accounted for 1.4 billion tons of carbon dioxide. Now, a report by emissions scientist Robbie Andrew of Norway’s CICERO Center for International Climate Research and the Global Carbon Project has found that by 2021 this figure had more than doubled, rising to 2.9 billion tons and accounting for more than 7% of all global emissions.

It may be carbon-intensive, but cement demand has increased significantly over the last 10 years and is expected to continue.  Cement is a binding element mixed with aggregates to make concrete and mortar.  These products are the foundation for the construction of homes, buildings, roads, and bridges around the world. As the world’s population rises, construction and infrastructure needs increase; therefore, so too will the demand for cement. Fortune Business Insights reported in April 2022 that the global cement market is projected to grow from $340.61 billion in 2022 to $481.73 billion by 2029.

Green cement is an environmentally friendly cement that uses a carbon-negative production process. It allows plants to continue to meet demand while reducing their carbon footprint. 

See how ProcessBarron equips plants to reach their GHG emissions reduction goals.

How Is Green Cement Produced?

Various green cement product types result from technological advances, including new cement formulations and energy-efficient production methods. Green cement is produced primarily with industrial by-products, such as fly ash, slag, and recycled aggregates. 

Other ways to “green-up” cement are by using by-products from magnesium mining (less intense than limestone mining) or calcium sulfoaluminate and via new production technologies such as hydrothermal liquid-phase densification and sequestered carbon.    

The 6 Types of Green Cement:

1. Calcium Sulfoaluminate Cement 

2. Geopolymer Cement

3. Sequestered Carbon Cement

4. Ekkomaxx Cement

5. Ferrocrete Cement

6. Magnesium Oxychloride Cement

To learn more about each, please visit these pages:

Benefits of Green Cement

In the conference paper, Environmental Impact of Green Concrete in Practice, several benefits of green cement are named, including:

  1. Makes Use of Waste
  • Recycled raw materials reduce the need for untapped inputs while also reducing industrial waste.
  • This results in less mining required AND reduced landfill waste.   
  1. Requires less energy
  • Recycled raw materials require less heat in production, reducing energy consumption.  
  • Production process energy consumption can be reduced by using alternative fuels vs. fossil fuels 
  1. Lowers Carbon dioxide emissions
  • The use of recycled and alternative raw materials provides significant savings in CO2
  • Advances in manufacturing techniques can reduce carbon emission by up to 80%
  1. Increased Strength & Extended Product Life 
  • Green cement is stronger, sets faster, and provides increased bonding
  • These qualities provide advanced corrosion resistance & increased fire resistance

The Future of the Cement Industry 

An industry analysis dated 2022 – 2029 predicts a 5.1% CAGR.  The rising demand for eco-friendly building and construction promotes this industry growth and are drivers for increased green cement production.  Cement plants equipped to meet the demands of the future are most likely to be those with lower operating costs and higher asset value through higher energy efficiency, yield, and throughput. The price and quality benefits of green cement manufacturing make it an opportunity too valuable to overlook. 

According to a long-term forecast of the green cement industry, the market is expected to reach $42.27 billion in 2026 and continue to increase to $48.46 billion in 2028. 

ProcessBarron serves over 80 cement plants across the US and Canada.  “Enabling smart, clean, and efficient production” is not something we just say, we partner with each of our customers to make this happen.  We take a holistic approach to analyzing air and gas handling, materials handling, and air pollution control systems to provide custom solutions focused on improving operational efficiency and reducing GHG emissions.   

One example is a project we did for a cement plant in California where we performed testing on their preheater ID fan.  Our analysis led us to perform an upgrade to the fan, and the results speak for themselves:

  • Power savings of 420 BHP for each fan
  • $225,120 in annual savings per fan
  • A CO2 reduction of 8 tons per year

ProcessBarron provides a comprehensive suite of products and services that work for your plant. Our experts in design, fabrication, installation, testing/analysis, maintenance, parts, and repair work provide solutions that not only meet EPA standards, but more importantly, serve your business, customers, and community with environmentally-friendly solutions.   

Talk to our experts to see how we can help you increase efficiency and reduce carbon at your facility!