Hydrogen trial

A cement kiln at our Ribblesdale works in Lancashire has successfully been operated using a net zero fuel mix as part of a world first demonstration using hydrogen technology.

The trial, made possible by Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) funding provided through the Mineral Products Association (MPA), used a mix of 100 per cent net zero fuels including hydrogen for commercial scale cement manufacture for the very first time.

During the demonstration, which is the culmination of several years of work, the proportion of fuels in the cement kiln’s main burner was gradually increased to a wholly net zero mix consisting of tanker delivered hydrogen as well as meat and bone meal and glycerine – by-products from the rendering and biodiesel industries respectively.

The trial demonstrated the pathway to moving away from using fossil fuels in cement and concrete production. If implemented for the whole kiln system, nearly 180,000 tonnes of CO2 could be saved each year at Ribblesdale alone, compared to using the traditional industry fuel of coal at the site.
We are already the largest producer of low carbon concrete in the UK, but using hydrogen in the fuel mix at our cement plants will help us meet our ambition of supplying net zero carbon concrete by 2050.