Cement sector pledges to decarbonise Pakistan

KARACHI: Pakistan Business Council (PBC) hosted a virtual session with British High Commission and Embassy of Italy to discuss the pathways for the decarbonisation of the country’s cement sector.

This webinar comes at a time when the world leaders have huddled in Glasgow to discuss sustainability and growth without compromising everyone’s collective future. Speaking at the moot, Mike Nithavrianakis, British Deputy High Commissioner and Director of Trade, said, “Next to water, concrete is the second-most consumed substance on earth; on average, each person uses nearly three tonnes a year”.

According to Nithavrianakis, the concrete industry uses about 1.6 billion tons of Portland cement to produce 12 billion tons of concrete a year and accounts for 7-8 percent of greenhouse emissions. Ehsan Malik, CEO PBC, said, “The investment in infrastructure and the construction packages of the government will entail substantial increase in the use of cement in Pakistan, so we need to think about climate-resilient ways of production”.

Muhammad Ali Tabba, CEO Lucky Cement Limited and President of All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association said, “In a bid to achieve green growth going forward, the industry globally will have to adapt to climate change challenges and rework business models to ensure environmental stewardship and robust growth and the cement industry in Pakistan is committed to playing its role”. Faustine Delasalle, Co-Executive Director, Mission Possible Partnership and Director, Energy Transitions Commission explained, “There are essentially three routes, which need to be taken to meet the increasing demand whilst reducing emissions in the cement sector”. “The first being a need to relook at using materials efficiently, the second being improving energy efficiency and the third being employing new technologies to cut emissions,” Delasalle added.

According to the statement, Pakistan’s leading companies are also committing to reduce carbon emissions by disclosing their pledge openly. More than 28 companies from various sectors have signed the pledge letter to the ‘Business Ambition to 1.5 Degrees’ – and are ready to embark on the journey to reduce Carbon emissions to 50 percent by 2030.