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Low-Carbon Fuel Transition Challenge


Challenge Synopsis

Lafarge Canada Inc. (Lafarge) is looking to advance solutions that could replace the use of fossil fuels in their cement manufacturing process and accelerate a low carbon fuel transition for the company.

 

Challenge Statement

Lafarge is seeking solutions to advance low carbon fuel options that also align with the principles of a circular economy.  These could involve processes, materials, technologies and ideas that incorporate turning what is currently considered waste into valuable inputs for Lafarge cements. Lafarge is interested in knowing more about what types of low carbon fuel sources and suppliers are currently available across Canada, as well as manufacturing processes and equipment to optimize the use of low carbon fuels.

 

Context

Lafarge currently operates five cement plants across Canada, each with varying degrees of low carbon fuel usage.  Lafarge uses about 300,000 – 350,000 tonnes of coal/coke per year across the country (not including the Exshaw, AB plant, which uses 100% natural gas).

As the largest construction materials company in Canada and as a fully integrated company, Lafarge also manufactures, markets and sells concrete and concrete products (pipe, precast, hollowcore), aggregates, paving and asphalt, construction solutions and asset maintenance.  Lafarge has been proactive in promoting the integration of the circular economy across all its product lines (e.g. recycled aggregates, concrete paving and low carbon cement (PLC)) and is looking to extend circular economy principles to its fuel supply chain.

The new Low Carbon Fuel System at the Lafarge Richmond Cement Plant is a prime example of the kind of circular economy projects Lafarge is seeking to advance.  Lafarge and the Government of Canada and B.C government partners are investing $28 million to diverts waste from landfill and increase the facility’s low carbon substitution rate from 35% to 50%, forecasted to reach up to 80% with further planned improvements, achieving the best low carbon fuel substitution rate in North America.

 

Response Criteria

  • Ideas and partial solutions that can be integrated with other partial solutions are of interest
  • Potential technologies should be at the validation stage (preferably TRL 4 and above)
  • Interest in low carbon fuel sources and suppliers that fit within a circular economy model (e.g. waste plastics, rubber, or wood materials), as well as technologies (e.g. manufacturing processes and equipment) that utilize low carbon fuel sources
  • Fuel alternatives need to be capable of being processed and blended to create a uniform mixture
  • Applicants should have an understanding of how their technology can be integrated into a complex energy system
  • The technology must demonstrate tangible CO2 emission reduction

 

The Opportunity

As a global leader in the construction materials industry, Lafarge Canada has both an opportunity and a responsibility to make a positive difference. Lafarge plans to transform the way the construction materials industry works and encourages the entire sector to contribute solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems including population growth, resource scarcity, urbanization, climate change, and accessible housing.

Lafarge has set a goal to replace 50% of their current coal/coke usage (or roughly 100,000 – 250,000 tonnes) with lower carbon fuels.

Additional, by 2030 Lafarge aims to produce 40% less net CO2/tonne of cement than it did in 1990, use 80 million tonnes/year of resources made from waste in their operations and reduce average dust, NOx, and SO2 emissions by 30% over 2015 levels.

About Lafarge Canada Inc.

Lafarge Canada Inc. is the largest provider of diversified construction materials and contracting services in the country. With 6,000 employees and 350 sites across Canada, our mission is to provide construction solutions that build better cities and communities. The company’s portfolio includes aggregates, asphalt and paving, cement, contracting, precast concrete and ready-mix concrete.

***Only non-confidential information should be included in the response ***