Leading building materials company Holcim unveiled a new commitment to invest CHF2 billion (USD$2.2 billion) in carbon capture technologies by 2030, with a focus on mature technologies, and pledging to capture more than 5 million tons of CO2 per year.

The new commitment was announced with the release of Holcim’s 2023 climate report, which also contained an upgraded target to reduce its Scope 1 emissions per ton of cementitious material by over 22% by 2030 to 420kg, compared to its prior 475kg target. The company said that its 2030 targets are aligned with the 1.5°C framework and validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). Holcim was the first global building materials company to sign on to the SBTi’s “Business Ambition for 1.5°C” pledge, joining in 2020. 

Building materials are a key source of global greenhouse gas emissions. Cement production, an ingredient in concrete, accounts for approximately 8% of global carbon dioxide emissions, with over 900 kg of CO2 emissions generated for every 1000 kg of material produced.

Holcim CEO Jan Jenisch said:

“Holcim is accelerating its climate action with upgraded net zero targets and a clear commitment to invest CHF 2 billion in CCUS technologies by 2030. We are committed to scaling up low-carbon and circular construction while making buildings more sustainable in use to build cities that work for people and the planet.”

The company outlined several of its initiatives to reach its climate goals, including deploying decarbonized materials in its product formulation, utilizing more alternative and renewable energy, and scaling up low-carbon building solutions.

In its climate report, Holcim highlighted the importance of developing and integrating carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS) into the cement production process, with CO2 emitted directly from cement manufacturing from raw materials that can’t be replaced at scale. The company said that its CCUS projects range from recycling CO2 from its plants into low emissions raw materials for cement, to applications including farming or for aviation fuel.

Holcim also revealed that it reduced its CO2 per net sales by 21% in 2022 and committed to reduce by over 10% in 2023, and that it recycled 6.8 million tons of construction and demolition waste into new building solutions, putting the company on track to exceed its 10 million ton 2025 target.

Magali Anderson, Chief Sustainability & Innovation Officer at Holcim, said:

“Taking a science-driven approach to climate action, we upgraded our 2030 targets to be in line with the SBTi’s 1.5°C framework and are pushing the boundaries of innovation to be at the forefront of low-carbon and circular building. I am encouraged by the progress we are making across our sites to accelerate the shift to net zero.”

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