Cementis is assisting EBRD in removing regulatory barriers in Egypt to align local construction code with international best practice, in particular regarding low CO2 cement usage.
The current average clinker content of Egyptian cement industry is around 89% which is 15% more than the worldwide average making it among the highest polluting cement industry in the world. Under a rapid low carbon scenario, lowering the clinker content in cement and concrete from existing 89% to 80% by 2025 has been identified as the most important lever to reduce CO2 emissions in the cement industry.
To achieve a target of 0.80 clinker factor by 2025, 5 million tons of clinker needs to be substituted by supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs). However, Egypt lacks the availability of conventional SCMs such as natural pozzolana, fly ash, slag etc. as there is no coal run thermal power plant and only 0.3 MT per year slag is generated. Therefore, LC3 has been identified as the main potential lever to achieve the above clinker factor.
However, LC3 usage is currently not allowed according to the Egyptian (construction) Code of Practice. HBRC (Housing and Building Regulatory Council: the national body in charge of the construction code) to define what are the steps needed to have LC3 allowed in construction in Egypt.
In January 2020, the EBRD appointed Cementis to assist in undertaking the necessary steps to have LC3 allowed for construction in Egypt. This project is made of three phases:
- Phase 1: Determine if there is enough clay volume of the required quality in Egypt to allow for LC3 production at industrial scale
- Phase 2: Determine if it will be economically feasible to produce LC3 in Egypt
- Phase 3: Undertake the necessary laboratory testing paving the way to allow LC3 usage in construction in Egypt.
Phase 1 & 2 have been successfully achieved, demonstrating the availability of the required clay quality and the financial attractiveness of LC3 production versus CEM I / OPC. Phase 3 is ongoing.