Materials and Structures

, 52:10 | Cite as

Influence of supplementary cementitious materials on the sustainability parameters of cements and concretes in the Indian context

  • R. GettuEmail author
  • A. Patel
  • V. Rathi
  • S. Prakasan
  • A. S. Basavaraj
  • S. Palaniappan
  • S. Maity
Original Article


The consumption of cement in India and other emerging economies is expected to increase because of the continuing push towards development of housing and infrastructure. The increasing production of cement and utilization of concrete are bound to have a major impact on sustainability. The present work proposes a framework for sustainability assessment, in terms of the CO2 emissions and energy demand, that can be adopted in cases where suitable databases are not readily available. Case studies for cement manufacture have been considered in South India, with different system boundaries such as ground-to-gate, gate-to-gate and CSI. The assessment made using data from the plant and other sources highlights the benefits of using supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs) in terms of reducing the impact of cement and concrete. More importantly, limestone calcined clay cement shows considerable promise in terms of reduction in CO2 emissions and energy demand in both cement and concrete, with more improvement in higher grade concrete.


Sustainability assessment Cement Concrete Life cycle assessment Carbon dioxide emissions Energy demand Supplementary cementitious materials 



The authors are grateful for partial funding from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation through the project on Low Carbon Cement (Ref. 7F-0857.01.02) with the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. The calculation of the impacts was done in SimaPro, version Authors are also thankful to the staff of Ultratech for providing relevant data for the Ariyalur cement plant, which was used in the assessment. The suggestions given by Profs. Guillaume Habert (ETHZ), Karen Scrivener (EPFL) and Shashank Bishnoi (IITD) during the preliminary stages of this work are sincerely appreciated. The mix design of the concrete was done by T. Sakthivel and B.S. Dhanya at IIT Madras.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© RILEM 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Gettu
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. Patel
    • 1
  • V. Rathi
    • 2
  • S. Prakasan
    • 1
  • A. S. Basavaraj
    • 1
  • S. Palaniappan
    • 1
  • S. Maity
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Civil EngineeringIndian Institute of Technology MadrasChennaiIndia
  2. 2.Development Alternatives, B-32 TARA CrescentNew DelhiIndia

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