Clean cement is hot and just got $55M hotter

Brimstone, among the startups looking to scale emissions-friendly cement production, raised $55 million in Series A funding from big names in climate VC, Ben writes.

Driving the news: The Bill Gates-led Breakthrough Energy Ventures and DCVC led the round for the California-based company founded in 2019.

Amazon’s climate VC arm and Fifth Wall Climate Tech also took part.

Why it matters: Cement, a key element of concrete, is extremely carbon-intensive, in part because of the high temperatures needed in the production process.

It accounts for an estimated 7%-ish of global CO2 emissions.

Zoom in: Brimstone’s tech involves using calcium silicate rocks, which have “no embedded CO2,” instead of limestone.

  • “This new process also produces magnesium species as a waste product, which passively absorb CO2,” they said.
  • That means their process is “net carbon-negative regardless of the fuel source used in the kiln,” they claim. The new capital will fund a pilot facility.

CNBC has more on Brimstone.

The big picture: Multiple startups have raised significant capital in the quest for green cement.

They include $78 million raised a year ago by Solidia Technologies, which has a lower-CO2 cement-making process and embeds CO2 in concrete curing.

-Why decarbonizing cement matters

 Why decarbonizing cement matters 22

Cement, as you can see from the chart above via the Global Carbon Project, is a pretty significant source of global CO2 emissions, Ben writes.

The big picture: The International Energy Agency’s net-zero global emissions pathway envisions tackling the problem from several angles, including greater efficiency and carbon capture.

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