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2020 / 2021 Edition

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Ibstock Concrete call for more focus on innovation

Will Hicks

Company says innovation and collaboration are key to concrete and cement industry carbon roadmap

A CULTURE of collaboration and innovation will accelerate the UK concrete and cement sector’s pathway to ‘Beyond Net Zero’ emissions, say building product manufacturers Ibstock Concrete.

Following the recent launch of the UK Concrete and Cement Industry Roadmap to Beyond Net Zero by UK Concrete, part of the Mineral Products Association (MPA), Ibstock Concrete have reiterated the need for greater focus on product innovation if the sector is to achieve its goals.

The industry-wide roadmap seeks an achievable route to ‘beyond net zero’ by 2050 through the application of seven decarbonization technologies, five of which focus on production-related emissions.

This aligns with Ibstock’s own carbon reduction targets, which form part of their Sustainability Roadmap 2025 and the development of a strategy for a pathway to net zero. The clay and concrete products manufacturer has set a target of a 15% reduction in CO2 per tonne of production within the next five years.

Ibstock Concrete are focusing on making their own contribution to the concrete products sector goals by concentrating on one of the production-related technologies; low-carbon cements and low-carbon concrete mix designs. As part of this process, they are exploring new methods of manufacturing traditional products, such as roof tiles, by collaborating with other leading materials suppliers.

For example, in partnership with Lafarge Cement, Ibstock have introduced SustainaCem into their concrete roof tiles. The result is a product which has equal strength and durability with a 15% lower carbon cement.

Will Hicks (pictured), operations director at Ibstock Concrete, commented: ‘We’re delighted to support the net carbon aims of UK Concrete. Our own Sustainability Roadmap 2025 reflects this direction of travel: it drives our sustainability efforts, and much like the concrete and building products industry, innovation and collaboration are the linchpins of achieving carbon-reduction targets.

‘We are working hard in partnership with several suppliers – including Lafarge Cement and Oscrete – to ensure we achieve our own sustainability goals, as well as contribute to those of the wider sector. The built environment accounts for 40% the world’s carbon emissions, so it’s clear there is much work that needs to be done and can be done.

‘More than ever, customers are looking for products which offer great functionality but also have robust sustainability credentials. By switching to Lafarge SustainaCem and using the Oscrete Alphaflow range of additives, we can offer our customers a great-looking product which is also forward-thinking in terms of its carbon footprint.’

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