GCCA’s goal to achieve Net Zero carbon emissions by 2050 backed by United Nations

The GCCA’s Chief Executive also called for enabling polices and regulations from governments around the world

The Global Cement & Concrete Association (GCCA) has announced that the United Nations (UN) has backed its plan to achieve Net Zero carbon emissions by 2050. UN Secretary General António Guterres addressed around 200 industry leaders in Zurich via video call, and said he wanted to see “concrete pledges from the concrete industry”.

Guterres’ comments followed a rallying call from GCCA Chief Executive Thomas Guillot for the industry to redouble its efforts and work in partnership with governments to achieve Net Zero.

The world’s leading manufacturers – all members of the GCCA – have pledged to eliminate carbon emissions by 2050, in line with GCCA’s Roadmap for Net Zero Concrete. The cement and concrete industry claims to be the first heavy industry to set out such a detailed plan.

“We applaud all the action our members are taking to implement carbon-cutting measures and the latest data shows emissions are coming down. But many challenges remain which we must overcome if we are to achieve Net Zero including enabling policies and regulations from governments across the world, which often don’t yet exist,” said Guillot in his address.

He continued, “So today, I urge every manufacturer across the world, who has not yet done so, to join our pledge to eliminate emissions by 2050. But I also implore all governments to work with our essential industry to deliver the policy framework that can create the favourable conditions to unlock the transition.”

Guillot said that concrete is, “fundamental to building a better world – and we have no time to lose if we are to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5-degrees Celsius. Science tells us that requires cutting global greenhouse emissions by almost half by 2030. That means taking a quantum leap in climate action and slashing global emissions, starting now.”

In his video address, Guterres also outlined three ambitions for the industry: to end the use of coal-fired power in cement production; work more closely with governments, especially G20 countries, to speed up decarbonisation; and set ambitious emission targets and transition plans in line with UN guidelines.

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