The cry for greener cities has never been louder. Currently, over 100 countries have policies on the books regarding sustainable consumption and production. In the United States, the EPA tracks green building initiatives and works with other agencies toward a greener future for everyone.
One of the areas of most concern to green living advocates is the construction and production space. The building and construction industry accounts for up to 12% of global CO2 emissions, 8% of which can be tied to the concrete and cement industries.
One company has taken the issue of the construction industry’s contribution to the global carbon crisis and developed a way to transform concrete structures that make up our cities into sustainable solutions. Carbon Limit, based out of Southern Florida, is paving the way for reduced carbon emissions and greener cities across the world, in every sense of the word.
Turning the problem into the solution
Innovation is necessary to change our planet’s climate change trajectory, which often seems perilous when looking at the metrics. However bleak some of the numbers may seem, exciting new technologies are being unveiled that serve to turn what was once the source of the emissions problem into the solution.
Concrete is the second most consumed material on the planet. Utilizing concrete to clean the air, instead of contributing to the climate change problem, could significantly move the needle towards positive environmental change.
Carbon Limit has devised a way to use specially formulated cement in building projects and roads that actively captures carbon from the air. The harmful carbon emissions are then mineralized and stored within the concrete, where they cannot harm the atmosphere. With carbon capture and sequestering technology, Carbon Limit is making significant moves in lessening carbon footprints for major construction projects.
“Tackling the concrete industry is one of the quickest ways to make an impact on this footprint,” explains Carbon Limit CEO Tim Sperry. Sperry was spurred to create Carbon Limit after he lost a family member to lung cancer and became motivated to find solutions to the greater problem of harmful environmental issues. Coming upon carbon capture and storage, he knew his start-up idea could make a world-changing impact.
Great ideas making a difference
The Carbon Limit technology works pre-cure and post-cure to decarbonize and capture harmful carbon emissions with a nature-based cement replacement made of non-calcined active minerals and materials that are highly reactive to carbon dioxide. This reactive nature pulls carbon from the environment around the concrete pour and permanently captures it.
“Based on the results of third-party testing, you can lower the carbon footprint of your next concrete project by up to 75% with Carbon Limit’s Capturecrete,” Sperry explains. “With more than 8 billion tons of concrete poured annually around the world, Carbon Limit’s solution presents an opportunity for impactful and permanent CO2 reduction.”
Carbon Limit’s rapid scale up started during their time at The Heritage Group Powered by Techstars Accelerator in 2021, and skyrocketed upon their selection as one of the top 11 companies in North America combating the climate crisis for Google for Startups Accelerator 2022: Climate Change. Carbon Limit began its pilot projects in the United States, including a recent sustainability project with the Minnesota Department of Transportation, and is actively working towards deploying the technology into larger commercial applications locally and nationally.
The work spearheaded by Carbon Limit’s impact driven team has not gone unnoticed.
The company has recently received awards from BIM World Munich Smart Building/Smart Construction Innovation World Cup, Cemex Ventures Construction Startup Competition, and the XTech Clean Tech/SBIR Competition. Carbon Limit was also awarded EGS & Sustainability Innovator at the North Star Dubai Supernova Pitch Competition 2022.
Going forward, Sperry is optimistic about Carbon Limit’s future in making a major impact on the world at large. “The technology that we have developed not only lowers CO2 emissions, it actively removes them from the air we all breathe, promoting long-term sustainability for greener cities around the world. It empowers us to make great strides toward addressing one of the biggest environmental problems of our time.”
Our planet’s delicate eco-balance has been disrupted by human interference. Climate-tech innovations like the ideas coming from the Carbon Limit team seek to restore that balance, “paving the way” for a better future.