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IMPACT

Half of all anthropogenic CO2 can be captured & permanently stored using Blue Planet Systems'
geomimetic mineralization technology. 

 

CARBON AND CONCRETE

Cement vs Concrete

  • Concrete is the second most consumed material on earth, second only to water

  • Concrete is made from 3 key components; cement, aggregate and water. 

  • Cement is they key ingredient of concrete, it is what binds the aggregate, sand and water together.

  • Cement accounts for only 10-15% of concrete by mass but >90% of it’s CO2 intensity

Concrete's Carbon Footprint

  • Manufacturing of cement (the binder in concrete) is responsible for ~8% of global emissions

  • The process involves heating calcium carbonate, commonly known as limestone, to 2700°F in order to separate the calcium from the carbon to make clinker

  • The fuel needed to reach that temperature can be made less CO2 intensive but carbon will always be released from the limestone. 

Concrete's Ingredients

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The table below shows the embodied carbon of a concrete mix formulated with Blue Planet aggregate calculated using the CarbonStar  rating system.

 

It demonstrates that simply switching coarse and fine aggregate to Blue Planet, can store 1120lb of CO2 in a cubic yard of concrete and take it's embodied carbon from over 600lb of CO2 to -494lb.

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Blue Planet aggregate is so carbon negative, that it offsets all the emissions from the cement in the concrete, making the mix carbon negative.

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CARBON MINERALIZATION

Permanent Carbon Capture through Mineralization

  • Mineralization is the earth's natural process of carbon capture and storage. Carbonate rocks contain 50,000,000 billion (that is fifty million billion) tonnes of carbon, more than all the air, ocean and forests combined.

  • Mineralization is the pathway of least resistance for permanent sequestration of CO2 because it is thermodynamically downhill meaning it requires only ambient temperature and pressure.

 

  • Blue Planet mimics the biomineralization pathway that CO2 naturally passes through but accelerating it at an industrial scale.

 

  • The mineralization process converts CO2 to CO3 and in most cases results in the formation of CaCO3 (limestone). 

  • 71% of all aggregate used in concrete is limestone.

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99% of carbon on earth is stored in carbonate rocks such as limestone

No Scale Up Needed

  • 55 billion tonnes, and rising, of aggregate is extracted around the world every year.

 

  • Aggregate is the only material used by humans that comes close to matching the 40 billion tonnes of anthropogenic CO2

 

  •  Using aggregate as a reservoir to store CO2 enables the use of all the existing aggregate infrastructure which is already at the scale to handle enough aggregate to sequester half of anthropogenic CO emissions

  • Aggregate is used in large quantities in every country in the world so there are no geographical limitations to where Blue Planet's technology could be used to sequester CO2.

 

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68% of global aggregate production is used in concrete

 

GLOBAL GOALS

The Path to Net-Zero

  • All paths to net-zero involve CCUS in a major capacity. The IPCC predicts CCUS capacity will need to reach 3.5Gt by 2050 in order to keep temperature rise below 1.5 degrees.

  • Blue Planet offers a decarbonization pathway to "hard to abate" sectors such as steel and cement that are heavy emitters but produce materials essential to modern life.

  • By combining Blue Planet's technology with "Blue" hydrogen SMR can become a carbon neutral process unlocking a crucial bridge to the hydrogen economy.

Circular Economy and Concrete Upcycling

  • The circular economy is integral to any path to net-zero and on a mass basis, concrete is the biggest component of the circle.

  • Typically if it is not landfilled, it is broken up and recycled for a low value use – such as a road base.

  • Blue Planet uses this waste concrete in its process as a source of calcium and alkalinity. The by-product is the original sand and gravel used in the concrete, which would normally be limited to low value applications. But because Blue Planet denudes it of its weakened crushed components, it is now upcycled to the equivalent regular aggregate.

The Power of Procurement 

  • Most aggregate on a worldwide basis is purchased by governments, or for government-funded projects.

  • Governments have the procurement power to specify carbon-sequestered rock in construction projects, providing what may be the strongest lever we have world-wide to prevent CO2 from entering Earth’s atmosphere.

 

  • This approach is a truly global one in that all countries alike purchase rock by funding infrastructure projects every year.

CarbonStar and the Carbon of Concrete 

  • Blue Planet’s Government Affairs and Built Environment teams were part of a body of experts in concrete and green building that recently published CarbonStar.

 

  • The CarbonStar rating is a metric based on the embodied mass of CO2 in a unit of concrete.

  • One approach to lowering the CarbonStar rating for a cubic yard of concrete is to replace traditional aggregate with Blue Planet aggregate. The difference being that Blue Planet aggregate contains sequestered CO2, which when used in place of traditional aggregate, reduces the embodied carbon of concrete.

Learn more about CarbonStar and use the calculator to see the impact of Blue Planet concrete »