Midwest cement producer aspires to hydrogen vs. hydrocarbon fuels

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Sources: Summit Materials Inc., Denver; PCC Hydrogen Inc., Louisville, Ky.; CMCM staff

Summit Materials’ Continental Cement Co. subsidiary and PCC Hydrogen (PCCH2) are eyeing a fuel replacement strategy lowering carbon emissions from cement production. A strategic alliance calls for Continental Cement to provide expertise related to the use of fossil fuel alternatives in high temperature processing as PCCH2 develops a plan to construct a production facility supporting hydrogen needs resulting from the collaboration. Ultimately, the companies aim to deploy negative carbon intensity, ethanol-derived hydrogen as a replacement for hydrocarbon fuels at Continental Cement’s Iowa and Missouri plants.


PCCH2 has proposed a skid-mounted pilot plant to anchor a Cloverdale, Ind. operation equipped for high purity, green hydrogen production, storage and loadout, plus carbon dioxide capture and storage. The pilot plant will prove out PCC Hydrogen’s technology that forms the basis for the PCCH2-Continental Cement alliance.

“Continental Cement has a longstanding commitment to environmental stewardship, seeking out opportunities to develop innovative practices and differentiated solutions to build a better tomorrow,” says President David Loomes. “Our company has signed on to the Portland Cement Association’s Roadmap to Carbon Neutrality, a goal of achieving carbon neutrality across the value chain by 2050. By coupling PCCH2’s hydrogen production process with our cement manufacturing know-how, we are taking a bold stride towards achieving that goal.”

“We couldn’t have found a better partner to explore innovative ways to decarbonize cement manufacturing, the backbone of our economy,” adds PCCH2 CEO Timothy Fogarty. “Continental Cement is an industry leader with over a century of operational history and is already evidencing its commitment to the environment through its subsidiary Green America Recycling. We are excited to help fulfill that commitment with our negative carbon intensity hydrogen providing a new avenue to decarbonization.”

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