Sustainable Building Materials

Concrete Sustainability and CO2 Emissions Reduction - Altering the Mix of Cement and Sustainable Materials

Some scientists attribute up to 5% of humanity's "carbon footprint" to the concrete industry, both from energy use and carbon dioxide (CO2) emission from Portland Cement production. A carbon footprint can be defined as the total set of GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions caused directly and indirectly by an individual, organization, event, or product. For concrete, the production of Portland Cement accounts for the majority of the embodied energy and greenhouse gas emissions that are attributed to the end product. By reducing the amount of cement used to produce concrete, and by making concrete structures last longer, we can effectively reduce the carbon footprint of the most widely used building material on the planet.

CTLGroup develops concrete materials for the construction industry that are more sustainable than conventional Portland Cement mixtures and can reduce the carbon footprint attributed to concrete construction. Mixture optimization is a technique which minimizes the necessary amount of cement paste by examining the particle size distribution of the aggregates and minimizing void space. Supplementary cementitious materials can be added to reduce the amount of cement required for production by up to 75%. The following benefits have been observed:

  • Increased durability and service life
  • Reduced cost
  • Reduced heat evolution
  • Reduced carbon footprint

We have developed sustainable concrete materials for numerous projects, including many large buildings and bridges across the nation, and several waterway structures for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. We typically perform services such as materials selection, admixtures interaction assessment, mixture proportion optimization, production oversight and troubleshooting, as well as materials testing and performance analysis.