Cementing the Global Net Zero Transition

Cement production accounts for around 7% of global emissions and it is the second largest global industrial emitter after steel.4 Achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement will be impossible without decarbonising sectors such as cement and yet, the carbon intensity of global cement production has only slightly decreased in recent decades, and it is significantly behind a Paris-aligned pathway.

For cement and other industrial sectors, the barriers to decarbonisation are much higher than others due to technological, economic, or socio- political reasons. The decarbonisation of cement is not just a technological challenge but also a financial and political one. It will require a new range of decarbonisation levers that are identified and guided through sector criteria, financed by the financial sector and promoted and de-risked with policy support.

Policy will impact the adoption of all these levers – technological or financial. This short paper provides an easy-to-implement guide to these policy levers available to policymakers and governments around the world.