Low Carbon Cement (LCC) - Phase 3 (Exit Phase)

Cement production contributes significantly to global warming. This phase aims at the commercial deployment of a new cement type (LC3) which emits 15-30% less CO2 compared to standard cements. LC3 was extensively researched by the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL) with partners in Cuba and India. Industrial deployment will be achieved through commercial production and application by the construction sector mainly in India and Latin America with support of the project.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Climate change and environment
Energy conservation & efficiency
15.09.2020 - 30.11.2022
CHF  1’800’000
Background About 5-8% of man-made CO2 emissions worldwide originate from cement production. The demand for cement continues to increase rapidly, particularly in developing and emerging countries due to urbanisation, infrastructure development and growing population. India is the second largest producer of cement, accounting for around 8% of the country’s industrial CO2 emissions and its consumption is expected to grow between 6-10% annually. In India, LC3 is likely to become a cement standard soon, which will strengthen India’s commitment in the Paris Agreement to reduce the emission intensity of its GDP by 33-35% until 2030 from the 2005 level. In Cuba, the government is interested to use LC3 for social housing and other infrastructure activities. In Latin American but also in Africa, the cement companies are interested in LC3 to test and start producing it themselves.
Objectives Reduction of global CO2 emissions by fast and sustainable uptake of LC3 by the construction sector, supported by a conducive regulatory environment.
Target groups

-    Cement companies including the ready-mix concrete producers
     and precast producers

-     Infrastructure construction companies including architects,
      builders, developers

-     Policy makers, standard setting bodies and building material
      certification agencies

-     Academic institutions

-    International agencies (GlobalABC, IEA, UNFCCC, UNEP, UNIDO, etc)

Medium-term outcomes

- R&D has closed critical remaining knowledge gaps to support LC3 deployment

- LC3 is included in Indian cement standards

- Broadly disseminated information, realized construction projects and an enabling policy framework de-risk investment and accelerate commercial deployment


Expected results:  

-    Remaining knowledge gaps related to cement and
     concrete are scientifically investigated and results published

-    Answers to anticipated technical questions during
     the standardization process generated and made available

-    Continued support is secured through active engagement
     in the standard approval committees, with cement companies
     and joint work with key stakeholders/experts

Results from previous phases:  

- Submission of draft standards in India to make LC3 a cement standard

-LC3 approved as a cement standard in Cuba

- Findings of the research on LC3 widely disseminated that raised significantly high interest among the cement companies in many countries some of which have started with trial productions and R&D work on LC3

- High visibility of LC3 obtained through Information Days, conferences, publications and PhDs/postdocs

- Trial production and some applications (e.g. pavements, small roads, LC3 based concrete platform) conducted in India and Cuba

- Two Technical Resource Centers (TRCs) established in India and Cuba who support the cement companies in Asia, Africa and the Latin American region

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
Foreign academic and research organisation
International or foreign NGO
Swiss Academic and Research Institution
  • Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne
  • Research Organisation of South East

Coordination with other projects and actors

-    Environmental/Sustainabilty initiatives by the cement industry, e.g. the         Global Cement and Concrete Association (GCCA)

-    Affordable housing schemes of the Governments of India and Cuba

-    Building Energy Efficiency Project (BEEP)

-    Capacity building project for low carbon and climate resilient city  
     development in India (CapaCITIES)

-    International Agencies: UNEP, UNIDO, GIZ, GlobalABC, IEA, UNFCCC 

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    1’800’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    1’440’030
Project phases Phase 3 15.09.2020 - 30.11.2022   (Current phase) Phase 2 01.06.2017 - 15.09.2020   (Completed) Phase 1 01.01.2013 - 31.05.2017   (Completed)