With COP26 drawing to an end, there is an intense focus on how the country can achieve its net-zero emissions ambitions.
Recently the IQ West of England branch hosted a technical presentation directly related to how the cement production industry could play its part in tackling this issue.
Titled 'Fuel Switching: UK Cement Production to Near-Zero CO2 Emissions', the presentation was delivered online by Dr Diana Casey and was enjoyed by over 50 members and guests.
Dr Casey completed her PhD at Bristol University before joining the Mineral Products Association (MPA) in 2010. She now holds the role of Director, Energy and Climate Change. She was part of the team that secured £300k of government funding to investigate switching cement production to near-zero CO2 emission fuel. This preliminary study lead to another successful bid for £3.2m to demonstrate the use of hydrogen, plasma and biomass fuels in pilot projects at Ribblesdale and Tunstead cement works.
The presentation put into context the overall impact cement production has had in terms of global emissions, which was the driver of the project. Diana proceeded to give a detailed insight into the project and the data analysis and investigation work that led up to the trials and demonstrated the potential to decarbonise fuel emissions from cement manufacture.
There were some challenges during the project relating to hydrogen and suitable biomass availability in the UK as well as a need to scale up plasma technology. Once these can be overcome, there appears to be a huge potential to decarbonise fuel emissions in cement manufacture.
A lively discussion with the online participants followed her talk relating to any potential for the concepts to be applied to the quarry industry.
Diana’s presentation included extensive data and information and is now available to view on IQ's YouTube channel.
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