Cementir launches a Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) pilot project at its Aalborg plant in Denmark

Cementir has established its first plant for CO2 capture and storage (CCS) in the Aalborg cement plant. The CCS pilot supports Cementir Climate Change Strategy including our goal to reduce by 30% the carbon intensity of our operations by 2030 and aim at achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.

“This carbon capture pilot is an important step towards building our knowledge for Carbon Capture and Storage technology application and setting up a full-scale plant, as we work to evaluate pathways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across our operations,” said Francesco Caltagirone, Chairman and CEO.

The pilot plant will capture one ton of CO2 per day. If successful, the project could be scaled up with the potential to capture 400,000 tons of CO2 per year by 2030. 

The project, which is named CORT (Carbon capture Open tests and Review of Technologies ) and is part of the mission-driven partnership INNO-CCUS, has been developed with the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) and more than fifty collaborators, including Aalborg University, Ørsted and Pentair. 

The project will test and demonstrate solvents and process technologies for carbon capture, a technology in which the CO2-containing smoke from the chimney is sprayed with a special liquid designed to bind CO2. This process generates large amounts of CO2-containing liquid, which must subsequently evaporate and cool down under pressure.

DTU is a global research institution with the most experience in CO2 capture and has developed a mobile plant for capturing CO2. The plant has previously been tested at, among others, the incinerator Amager Bakke in Copenhagen, and it is now time to gain experience from cement production, explains Philip Loldrup Fosbøl, head of the project from DTU Chemical Engineering:

- We will create an incredible amount of new knowledge with this project. It is also a unique and crucial opportunity to test the pilot plant at Aalborg Portland. Here we are dealing with a company and industry that is very important to the green transition. We already know this project will move both Aalborg Portland and Denmark into the top league for CO2 capture and the production of climate-friendly cement. We can achieve the climate goals set by the Government, says Philip Loldrup Fosbøl.

- We are very much looking forward to being one of the first cement factories in the world to gain the first experience with CCS. The project has been a long time coming, and we have clear expectations for the results. However, carbon capture is in a league of its own investment-wise. We have invested a three-digit million in the green transition in recent years and allocated an additional billion kroner towards 2025.  However, establishing full-scale CCS plants will cost additional billions, explains Søren Holm Christensen, CEO of Aalborg Portland A/S.