Methodology report – Clinker substitution in the EU cement sector

Logo Methodology report – Clinker substitution in the EU cement sector

This methodology report from New Climate Institute estimates the CO2 mitigation potential from the increased use of supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs) and alternative binders in the EU cement sector. The increased use of SCMs and alternative binders is enabled by the theoretical updating of the current recipe-based EU cement standards to performance-based approaches.

To maximise the potential for clinker substitution, it is important to remove barriers that hinder large-scale market uptake of low-carbon solutions. These barriers include first and foremost European cement and concrete standards, which are highly prescriptive in nature, locking in high levels of clinker content in cement mixes. This limits the ability to develop and use novel low-carbon cement types, as such hampering innovation and decarbonisation in the EU cement industry.

It is widely acknowledged that the adoption of performance-based standards could serve as a key lever for further material innovation and the market uptake of already existing low-carbon solutions, based on performance indicators such as strength, permeability, shrinkage, etc., without imposing restrictions on the materials used to get there.

Read also the ALCCC report on how to decarbonise cement!