The accelerator programme includes national roadmaps and government dialogues in Egypt, India, Thailand, and Colombia — kicking off a local phase of 2050 net-zero global commitment
The Global Cement and Concrete Association (GCCA) launched on Wednesday a series of net-zero accelerator initiatives to help national cement and concrete industries decarbonise in line with the GCCA’s 2050 Net-Zero Global Industry Roadmap.
The first wave of accelerators will launch in Egypt, which later this year will be the host country for the UN’s Conference of Parties on Climate Change (COP 27), as well as in India, Thailand, and Colombia. These countries combined represent approximately 10% of global cement and concrete production.
Concrete — a local and durable material — is fundamental to overcoming sustainable development challenges, which many parts of the world are facing, such as population growth, increasing urbanisation, and the need for more resilient infrastructure and communities in the face of a rapidly changing climate.
Globally, cement and concrete manufacturing accounts for around 7% of carbon dioxide emissions. The global plan to eliminate these emissions by 2050 requires all parts of the world to accelerate their reductions in emissions.
The accelerator programme will identify the barriers to decarbonisation in target countries and recommend key actions. This includes encouraging government policies that can have an immediate impact, such as better recycling, the use of waste as an alternative to fossil fuels, and other circular economy practices. It will also include identifying lighthouse projects that can fully eliminate emissions over the next decades, such as carbon capture utilisation and storage technologies.
Mahmoud Mohi El-Din — the COP 27’s UNFCCC High-Level Champion of Egypt — said that “much of the infrastructure the world needs to overcome major global challenges — such as alleviating poverty, the need for clean water and energy, and safe, affordable housing — is yet to be built.”
“The full and willing participation of a sector which accounts for 7-8% of global emissions is critical to contribute to the goal of the 2015 Paris Climate Change Agreement to limit global warming below 2°C and as close as possible to 1.5°C.”
The accelerator programme comprises three elements — net-zero national roadmaps, including emission forecasts, reduction levers, policy needs, and the industry’s commitment; identification and funding exploration for large scale carbon cutting “Lighthouse Projects”; and policy dialogues with national governments to help accelerate the transition.
The GCCA is partnering with the cement and concrete industry on the ground and will work closely with policymakers, designers, and the construction sector to help overcome procurement and resourcing challenges as well as demonstrate the business case for greener technologies to be used on a wider scale.