The manufacture of cement is an energy-intensive and greenhouse gas emissions intensive process that requires large amounts of thermal energy to heat the raw materials necessary to produce cement. While electricity use accounts only for 10% of the energy used, it accounts for over 25% of the total cost of energy. Taken together, electricity and primary energy costs account for almost 40% of total production costs. Increasing costs associated with new and upcoming climate change regulations, both direct and pass-through, will significantly impact on the global competitiveness of Canada's cement industry.
Approximately 60% of greenhouse gas emissions associated with the industry are irreducible, fixed-process emissions resulting from the chemical process that occurs to produce cement.
In order to address the challenges of climate change and industry competitiveness, Canadian cement manufacturers are moving forward with their strategy to meet climate change objectives by:
- enhancing and improving the use of alternative and renewable energies in place of virgin fossil fuels
- increasing the use of Supplementary Cementing Materials to replace a portion of cement used to make concrete, and
- continually improving the energy efficiency of the manufacturing process
For further information on the industry's sustainability: Sustainable Manufacturing