HDOT tests sustainable concrete mix designed to reduce carbon footprint of road construction

Posted on May 16, 2019 in Highways News, Main, News

HONOLULU – The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) is testing a concrete mix injected with waste carbon dioxide as a sustainable transportation initiative. The test involves a pour of 150 cubic yards of carbon-injected concrete next to an equivalent pour of standard concrete mix on an access road for the Kapolei Interchange Phase 2.

This test will allow HDOT to do a side-by-side comparison of the two mixes to determine specifications for the use of carbon-injected concrete for road projects in the future.

“I am pleased to see HDOT moving ahead with CarbonCure, local concrete companies, and Hawaii Gas to reduce the levels of carbon dioxide emitted during the construction process,” said Governor David Ige. “As the daily baseline measurement for carbon dioxide in our atmosphere reaches the highest level in modern history, it is especially important for all of us to do all we can towards ensuring a sustainable Hawaii for future generations.”

The carbon-injected concrete used in the testing is produced by Island Ready-Mix Concrete using waste carbon dioxide from Hawaii Gas. The carbon dioxide is mixed into the concrete using CarbonCure technology. The resulting product traps carbon dioxide in mineral form within the concrete and improves the comprehensive strength of the material. This project is supported by Elemental Excelerator—a Hawaii-based startup accelerator that has supported more than 50 projects alongside startups, local businesses, and government agencies. “We are proud that Hawaii is looking at sustainable building practices to mitigate the effects of climate change,” said Aki Marceau, managing director for the Elemental Excelerator.

Depending on the final specifications, the use of carbon-injected concrete could reduce embodied carbon by 25 lbs. per cubic yard. A mile of concrete pavement uses roughly 21,000 cubic yards of concrete. The amount of concrete poured in the HDOT demonstration project will save 1,500 lbs. of carbon dioxide, offsetting the carbon dioxide emissions from 1,600 miles of highway driving.

Concrete is the most abundant manmade material on earth and is responsible for seven-percent of global manmade greenhouse emissions, making it the world’s second largest industrial source of carbon dioxide, according to the International Energy Agency.

Photos and videos of the production pour this morning and interviews with Christie Gamble of CarbonCure and Aki Marceau from the Elemental Excelerator can be found at this link.

About CarbonCure

CarbonCure Technologies Inc. is the global leader in carbon dioxide (CO2) utilization technologies for the world’s most abundant man-made material: concrete. The retrofit CarbonCure Technology chemically mineralizes waste CO2 during the concrete manufacturing process to make greener and stronger concrete. CarbonCure has partnered with more than 130 concrete producers across North America and Asia to create new production cost savings, gain competitive sales advantages, and reduce the carbon footprint of the built environment.

About Elemental Excelerator

Elemental Excelerator helps startups change the world, one community at a time. Each year, it finds 15-20 companies that best fit its mission and fund each company up to $1 million to improve systems that impact people’s lives: energy, transportation, water, agriculture, and beyond. To date, Elemental Excelerator has awarded over $30 million to 82 companies.