The Time for Policy Action is Now
Below are examples of United States government bodies who have proposed and passed policies, resolutions and building codes relating to building with CO₂ mineralized concrete and reducing embodied carbon in the built environment.
Honolulu — A Global First
In April 2019, Honolulu, Hawaii became the first municipality to pass a resolution that “requests the city administration to consider using carbon dioxide mineralization concrete for all future city infrastructure projects utilizing concrete.”
U.S. Conference of Mayors
On the heels of the adopted Honolulu resolution, a motion that urges all member cities to prioritize the use of CO2 mineralized concrete in city projects that require concrete was passed unanimously by the United States Conference of Mayors, which covers more than 1400 cities.
Hawaii Setting the Precedent
In January 2019, the State of Hawaii tabled legislature which would require “all state building construction that uses concrete to use post-industrial carbon dioxide mineralized concrete unless use of these materials will increase costs or delay construction.”
First DOT Demonstration
In May 2019, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) demonstrated the use of CO2 mineralized concrete supplied by Island Ready-Mix for the Kapolei Interchange Phase 2 project on Oahu Island, reducing 1,500 pounds of carbon.
Austin Recommends Reducing CO2
In June 2019, the City of Austin, Texas passed a resolution recommending “supporting the development of pilot programs that utilize Carbon Dioxide Mineralization Concrete for future Austin infrastructure projects.”
New York State Procurement
As of Oct. 2019, the State of New York has a pending bill relating to state procurement policies, requiring “low embodied carbon concrete be used in state projects and creating a preferential standard for concrete implementing CO2 capture and utilization technologies.” The bill would also establish the Environmental Product Declaration tax credit. Following in the footsteps of the State, in May 2020 the Village of Hastings-on-Hudson, NY passed municipal legislation which encourages and promotes “the use of low embodied carbon concrete products in building and infrastructure projects involving concrete.”
Portland Requires EPDs
As of January 1, 2020, the City of Portland, Oregon’s purchasing policy came into effect. It requires “product-specific Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) and using those EPDs and related mix performance information to select lower impact mixes for Portland Cement Concrete” in order to reduce emissions associated with concrete use on City projects.
Marin County Makes History
On January 1, 2020, California’s Marin County passed the first low-carbon building code in North America. It sets maximum limits for the usage of cement in concrete based on carbon emissions, also referred to as Global Warming Potential (GWP).