Carbon Capture by Concrete: Lifecycle Assessment of Built Concrete Infrastructure within Australia

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Title: Carbon Capture by Concrete: Lifecycle Assessment of Built Concrete Infrastructure within Australia

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Publication: CIA

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Date: 2/28/2011

Abstract:
Almost all prior life-cycle assessments of carbon dioxide (CO2) footprints left by concrete structures have focused on emissions developed during manufacturing and construction. However, exposed concrete chemically reacts with CO2 over the lifetime of the infrastructure in a well-known process: carbonation. At the end of the service life, the demolished concrete, broken into waste fragments and recycled, will carbonate more comprehensively due to the higher exposed area of concrete compared with the original built structure. This paper examines the contribution of sequestration of CO2, both during the exposed life of a built concrete structure, and at the end of the service life following demolition and subsequent recycling. Modelling the contribution of carbonation to sequestration of CO2 has been undertaken to re-examine the CO2 footprint over the life of a concrete structure.


Concrete Institute of Australia, International Partner Access.

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