Innovative projects to reduce CO2 emissions


In Belgium, lime producers are looking for innovative ways to reduce their CO2 emissions and contribute to the fight against climate change and the goal of an emissions-neutral society by 2050.

Among these initiatives, Lhoist, co-leader in the lime sector with Carmeuse, is noteworthy thanks to three ambitious projects, two of them unprecedented, and its medium-term objectives for 2030.

Xavier Pettiau, Director of CO2 Research for the Lhoist Group, explains that 31% of their CO2 emissions come from the combustion fuel used in their furnaces, while the remaining 69% are a result of their manufacturing processes. The aim is to reduce combustion emissions across the Group by 50% by 2030, compared with 2018.

To achieve this goal, Lhoist first replaced its long rotary furnaces with shorter, more energy-efficient ones and then with even more economical upright furnaces. The company is also planning to use more biomass as fuel and to generate renewable energy on its sites, with wind turbines in the North Sea and photovoltaic panels. However, 69% of CO2 emissions are considered non-compressible, meaning that they must be captured.

Lhoist is currently developing three innovative CO2 capture projects. The first, called "CO2ncrEAT", is being carried out in collaboration with Aperam, Fluxys, Orbix and Prefer. It consists of a circular process in which Aperam's steel production residues are transformed into low-carbon building blocks using captured CO2. This model will neutralise around 15,000 to 20,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.

The second project, called "NKL", involves the University of Mons, the University of Liège, Resa, Fluxys, Tractebel and other partners and aims to produce e-kerosene by combining hydrogen with captured CO2.

The third project involves the storage and burial of the CO2 captured at the Réty site in France, with a connection to the hub at the port of Dunkirk for underwater transport to different burial sites.

Innovations such as these contribute to more environmentally friendly industrial production.