Innovate UK announces the Concrete Commitment Cohort

Innovate UK is pleased to announce the formation of the Concrete Commitment Cohort (CCC) alongside the launch of a funding competition to accelerate commercial adoption of lower carbon concrete.

Posted on: 04/01/2024

Innovation, investment and support

Innovate UK has formed the Concrete Commitment Cohort (CCC), an alliance of major concrete users who will work together to support the new programme to decarbonise concrete.

Included in the programme is a £3 million Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) competition to fund innovation in materials and processes that lower the carbon footprint of concrete. In parallel, the Concrete Commitment Cohort (CCC), will explore the potential for Advance Market Commitments for the successful projects, with the aim to provide clear market pull and help unlock the required investment to scale these new technologies. Innovate UK will also seek to align additional investment support.

Developing solutions to accelerate decarbonising concrete

Concrete is an essential part of everyday life and is needed in helping us to reach our 2050 net zero carbon target. UK concrete and cement currently account for around 1.5% of UK carbon dioxide emissions and around 7% of emissions globally and decarbonising it is critical.

However, as recent events have shown, concrete is used in many safety critical applications where long term durability and performance is essential. Therefore, new solutions to decarbonise concrete need careful consideration and rigorous testing before market acceptance. To achieve rapid adoption, these solutions must have the support of those that specify and procure large volumes of concrete.

The Environment Agency’s NZC2030 roadmap commits us to reduce our carbon footprint by at least 45% by 2030. Over half of our total carbon footprint is from our construction activities. To reduce this, one of the key elements is a joint commitment from the Environment Agency and the designers and contractors we work with to use lower embodied carbon concretes. We need to accelerate the development and adoption of the next generation of low carbon concretes that will get us closer to net zero carbon and diversify the cement replacements in use in mixes.

– Andrew Powell, Environment Agency, Member of the Concrete Commitment Cohort (CCC)

Through this new approach, Innovate UK are seeking to encourage market demand for innovation to unlock the necessary investment to achieve rapid decarbonisation.

The Concrete Commitment Cohort (CCC) members include:

  • National Highways
  • JN Bentley
  • Sellafield sites
  • WSP
  • Anglian Water
  • HS2
  • United Utilities
  • Environment Agency
  • Laing O’Rourke
  • Ferrovial Construction
  • Transport for London

As Tier 1 contractor one of our top priorities in Ferrovial Construction, is to reduce the carbon footprint of our infrastructure projects. We recognise the importance of innovation to achieve this and this competition is a great incentive for us to collaborate with suppliers and other organisations, to develop more sustainable concrete solutions and realise the benefits in our projects.

– Dr Efi Tzoura, Ferrovial Construction, Member of the Concrete Commitment Cohort (CCC)

To find out more about the competition and the wider programme, please join the online briefing event on Tuesday 9 January.

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Related Opportunities

SBRI: Decarbonising concrete

Opens: 08/01/2024 Closes: 04/03/2024

Organisations can apply for a share of £3m inc VAT to develop solutions to accelerate decarbonising concrete.

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