Cement production increases carbon footprint
The most astonishing thing about cement is how much air pollution it produces.
Manufacturing the stone-like building material is responsible for 7 per cent of global carbon dioxide emissions, more than what comes from all the trucks in the world. And with that in mind, its surprising that leading cement makers from LafargeHolcim in Switzerland to VotorantimCimentos SA in Brazil are finding customers to embrace a greener alternative.
Their story highlights the difficulties of taking greenhouse gases out of buildings, roads and bridges. After wresting deep cuts from the energy industry, policymakers looking to extend the fight against global warming are increasingly focusing on construction materials and practices as a place to make further reductions. The companies are working on solutions, but buyers are reluctant to pay more.
There is so far too little demand for sustainable materials,said Jens Diebold, head of sustainability at LafargeHolcim. I would love to see more demand from customers for it. There is limited sensitivity for carbon emissions in the construction of a building.