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Owner of Kunda Nordic Tsement to install full-scale CCS facility in Norway

BC, Tallinn, 28.12.2020.Print version
HeidelbergCement Group, which also includes the Estonian company Kunda Nordic Tsement AS, is to install the world's first full-scale carbon capture and storage (CCS) facility in its cement plant in southern Norway, informs LETA/BNS.

The Norwegian parliament in December approved the investment in a full-scale carbon capture facility at the HeidelbergCement Norcem plant in Brevik, Norway. The Brevik carbon capture and storage (CCS) project will enable the capture of 400,000 tons of CO2 per year and the transportation for permanent storage, making it the first industrial-scale CCS project at a cement production plant in the world.

Work on the new facility in Brevik is expected to begin immediately, with the goal of starting CO2 separation from the cement production process by 2024. The end result will be a 50 percent cut of emissions from the cement produced at the plant.

"We are delighted about the final approval of the Norwegian parliament for our breakthrough CCS project in Norway," Dominik von Achten, chairman of the management board of HeidelbergCement, said. "To meet national and international climate targets, CO2 separation is an important cornerstone. Our CCS project in Brevik will pave the way for our industry and other sectors."

The Norwegian government had shortlisted Brevik for an industrial-scale CO2 capture trial at the beginning of 2018. In September 2019, a memorandum of understanding on the capture and storage of CO2 was signed by HeidelbergCement and the state-owned Norwegian energy group Equinor. The project funding is largely supported by the Norwegian government as part of the Norwegian full-scale "Longship’"climate investment project that comprises capture, transport and storage of CO2. 

HeidelbergCement has committed itself to reduce its specific net CO2 emissions per tonne of cementitious material by 30 percent compared to 1990 by 2025. This figure had previously only been targeted for 2030. To achieve this, the company has defined concrete CO2 reduction measures for all plants worldwide. HeidelbergCement aims to offer carbon-neutral concrete by 2050 at the latest.

"One of the crucial questions for the future cement industry is how to achieve carbon neutrality," Meelis Einstein, managing director of Kunda Nordic Tsement, said. "One of the few proven methods to help achieve this goal is carbon capture and storage -- CCS. Brevik's carbon capture is groundbreaking and will hopefully mark the beginning of a new era in tackling climate change."

In connection with the cessation of clinker production in Kunda, Kunda Nordic Tsement has replaced the main raw materials for cement production with the import of clinker from HeidelbergCement Group's Slite plant in Sweden, where it is possible to produce raw materials with a lower carbon footprint. The cessation of Kunda clinker production reduces the carbon footprint of Kunda Nordic Tsement by approximately 28 percent.

Estonia's CO2 emissions will decrease by about 600,000 tons per year thanks to the cessation of clinker production.

CCS, or carbon capture and storage, is a climate measure that significantly reduces point source CO2 emissions. CCS consists of three parts: collection, transport and storage.

In the first stage, the carbon dioxide is separated from the other flue gases with the help of a chemical process and then collected in liquid form. The carbon dioxide is then transported to a permanent storage location. It can be pumped, for example, into geological formations or old emptied oil and gas boreholes in the North Sea.

HeidelbergCement is one of the world’s largest integrated manufacturers of building materials and solutions, with leading market positions in aggregates, cement, and ready-mixed concrete. Around 54,000 employees at more than 3,000 locations in over 50 countries deliver long-term financial performance through operational excellence and openness for change. At the center of actions lies the responsibility for the environment. As forerunner on the path to carbon neutrality, HeidelbergCement crafts material solutions for the future.

AS Kunda Nordic Tsement is a cement and crushed stone production company belonging to the HeidelbergCement Group and employing 88 people. The revenue of Kunda Nordic Cement was 42 million euros last year. Cement has been produced in Kunda since 1871.

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