Ontario Construction News staff writer
Noting that concrete is the most used building material on the planet, and the cement needed to make concrete accounts for 7 per cent of global Co2 emissions, Canada’s cement and concrete industry is poised to eliminate more than 15 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions cumulatively by 2030, followed by ongoing reductions of over four million tonnes annually from the production of cement and concrete in Canada.
“Decarbonizing concrete is a necessity, and Canada’s cement and concrete industry has demonstrated that it is up to the task,” CAC chair Marie Glenn said in a statement. “This roadmap demonstrates our industry’s leadership in CO2 emissions reduction and positions us to achieve our goal of net-zero cement by 2050. But it’s just a start.
“We look forward to continuing our work with the Government of Canada to implement the priorities identified in the roadmap and to ensure that the right combination of incentives and regulatory policies continues to be put in place for our industry to thrive and succeed in a competitive net-zero global economy.”
The Action Plan to 2030 is centred on three priority areas: driving Canadian market development; advancing innovation and transition in the industry; and positioning Canada as a world leader in the production, adoption and export of low-carbon cement and concrete products and technologies.
Government and industry collaboration, through major transitional industrial decarbonization projects, research and development, will support the push toward net zero by 2050. This collaboration will also strengthen Canada’s leadership in clean technologies, paving the way to a clean-growth future.
Canada is also doubling down on this initiative by committing to co-lead the Glasgow Breakthrough on Cement and Concrete, which will allow like-minded countries to share best practices on the range of policies, regulations, programs and other measures for decarbonizing the concrete and cement sector.
“Canada’s cement and concrete industry is a leader in the fight to stop climate change. While we are steadfast in our commitment to reduce our emissions by 15 million tonnes cumulatively by 2030 and reach true net zero by 2050, we know we can’t do it alone,” said CAC president and CEO Adam Auer. “Together with government, we will continue to support the innovation and investment needed on our path to delivering net-zero concrete, while at the same time preserving its properties as a durable, resilient, versatile and cost-effective material.
“By working together, Canada’s cement and concrete industry will remain competitive throughout the low-carbon transition, delivering emissions reductions while supporting jobs in communities across the country.”
Cement production in Canada was valued at more than $1.3 billion in 2019.
The Roadmap to Net-Zero Carbon Concrete was spearheaded by a joint government-industry working group, co-led by the Cement Association of Canada and Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada. The working group included key players from the federal government, the Canadian cement and concrete industry, and relevant environmental experts.
“As a family-owned Canadian-based construction materials producer, BURNCO is focused on ongoing innovations related to environmental preservation, community engagement and multi-generational sustainability. As a company, we are committed to assuring a safe, healthy and sustainable future for our customers, employees and communities,” said Tom Zais, CEO, BURNCO Rock Products Ltd. “At BURNCO, we look forward to aggressively pursuing future opportunities that improve the environment and create better communities for future generations.
“All of us at BURNCO are proud to be an integral contributor to the critical construction materials ecosystem, and we are 100% invested in supporting the achievement of this critical and ambitious goal.”