INNOVATION

Sustainable concrete

Concrete is a unique material that also in the future will continue to form the basis for global sustainable development.

Concrete is manufactured from local materials: stone, sand, water and cement.The raw materials for cement are available in abundance in the form of limestone, clay and shale; at the same time, wastes can be extensively used as alternative raw materials or fuels in the production. Concrete can be cast under both primitive conditions and also using high-tech production methods. Even though cement manufacture is energy-intensive, concrete contains only about 15% of cement. As concrete is extremely durable, the environmental impact and consumption of resources are low when viewed over the life of the product.

We have conducted research into increasing concrete durability and developing new, resource-saving cements for many years. The Aalborg Portland Group has therefore played a part in enabling contemporary Danish concrete to be produced with long life and low environmental impact.

As long as 15 years ago the Aalborg Portland Group took part in the first projects focusing on life cycle analysis and identification of potential environmental improvements in cement and concrete. This was followed by the Centre for Green Concrete project. This project demonstrated several ways in which concrete may be produced with lower use of natural resources and impact on the environment.

Recently, we have completed environmental product declarations for four of our main cement types.

 

Advantages of concrete

  • Concrete can be recycled after demolition. This is done by crushing it and using it as substitute for natural gravel or as aggregate in production of new concrete.
  • Concrete absorbs CO2. Theoretically more than half the CO2 liberated by the burning of clinker is absorbed back into the finished concrete where it is bound as limestone.