Researchers focus on reducing carbon dioxide emissions

Researchers focus on reducing carbon dioxide emissions

May 3, 2013


Researchers at Queen’s University have joined forces with Carbon Management Canada (CMC) to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel use in industry. The research project will compare emissions between different types of low carbon fuels and burner optimization.

Warren Mabee (School of Policy Studies) and Queen’s Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy received $400,000 from CMC to conduct their research at the Lafarge Cement plant near Kingston. Lafarge Canada Inc. is contributing more than $3 million toward the building of new biomass handling facilities at its Bath cement plant site.  Other Queen’s researchers, including Andrew Pollard and Darko Matovic, are also engaged in this project.

“There has been concern about using some waste streams, partly because of a lack of good science to quantify emission reductions, and partly because people are worried that combustion of these materials might lead to other kinds of pollution,” says Dr. Mabee. “This project is designed to explore these issues and to identify cleaner, more sustainable practices.”

Canada’s cement industry is responsible for up to three per cent of the country’s carbon dioxide emissions and about 1/3 of these emissions are due to burning coal. Dr. Mabee and his team will examine using low carbon fuels such as debris from construction and demolition sites, to power cement plants.

“The burners at cement plants are already set up to handle coal and therefore it’s easy for us to manage any negative emissions associated with burning low carbon alternatives,” says Dr. Mabee. “This project will give us a good sense how these fuels will perform in the real world.”

In this most recent round of funding, CMC awarded $3.75 million to Canadian researchers working on eight different carbon management projects.