Earlier last week, cement maker CEMEX, S.A. de C.V. (CX), was selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop technology for capturing and storing carbon dioxide emissions at one of Cemex’s U.S. cement plants.

CEMEX will work with RTI International and others to design a dry sorbent Carbon dioxide capture and compression system, a pipeline (if necessary), and an injection station. This commercial-scale Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) demonstration project may remove up to 1 million ton of Carbon dioxide annually.

Only 12 CCS projects from industrial sources, including cement plants, chemical plants, paper mills, refineries, and manufacturing facilities across the United States were selected for the first phase of DOE funding. Cemex USA is the only cement company in America to receive funding for a large-scale industrial CCS project.

The CCS projects are cost-shared collaboration between the government and private industry to increase investment in clean industrial technologies and sequestration projects. The DOE will provide $1.14 million and Cemex USA will provide 20% of the funding for Phase I of its project.

CEMEX’s sustainability commitment includes constantly looking at ways to minimize its energy use and reduce its carbon footprint. In March, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the DOE selected CEMEX USA as the 2009 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year for its outstanding energy management and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. In 2008 alone, CEMEX decreased its total energy use to an amount which was equal to reducing 115,000 metric tons of Carbon dioxide emissions. This is equivalent to providing electricity to at least 1,500 American homes for a decade or avoiding about 21,000 passenger vehicles’ Carbon dioxide emissions for a year.
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