The WBCSD's Cement Sustainability Initiative (CSI), currently co-chaired by Lafarge andTaiheiyo Cement, today called on G8 members and the UNFCCC to accelerate the creationof a policy framework that will allow the development of effective sectoral approaches.At a meeting in Paris, Mr Bruno Lafont, Chairman and CEO of Lafarge, was joined by thePresident of the WBCSD Mr Bjorn Stigson in encouraging the concept of sectoralapproaches to be tabled at next week's G8 Summit.

"While discussions are underway to reach a global climate agreement, complementarysectoral approaches could be put into place under which key industry players could worktogether to accelerate CO2 reductions." explained Mr Stigson.

The cement sector is best placed to adopt a sectoral approach on CO2 emissions, thanks toa CO2 measuring and reporting protocol developed in 2002 by the WBCSD's CementSustainability Initiative (CSI). This protocol is now being used by 80% of the world's cementindustry.

"As an industry, we are leading in the adoption of tools that can be used to target climatechange. Member companies of the CSI have set voluntary individual CO2 reduction targetswhich are delivering encouraging results and we have today announced a significant drop inemissions per tonne of cement produced by our members." said Mr Lafont.

Figures released by the CSI show that the average net specific emissions per tonne ofcement of its 18 members have fallen from over 760kg CO2/tonne in 1990 to 670kg in 2007.This reduction equates to CO2 savings in 2007 of over 70 million tonnes, compared to 1990performance.

"These results are encouraging and show that reducing CO2 intensity in cement is possible.To go further, we are calling on G8 members and the UNFCCC to accelerate the creation ofthe necessary policy framework for effective sectoral approaches," commented Mr Lafont.

As part of its work on identifying actions that cement manufacturers can take to improve thesustainability of their industry, the CSI developed the first global cement database, chartingCO2 and energy, with independently verified data. It is the accurate collection of data of thistype that will prove crucial in the successful application of sectoral approaches by industry.

"There are a number of benefits with sectoral approaches." said Mr Stigson. "They offer away of mobilizing emerging economies in CO2 mitigation. This is important when weconsider that 80% of emissions in the cement sector come from developing regions. Sectoralapproaches also enable a small number of key industry players, or indeed countries, tobecome engaged quickly."

Cement is strategic for any country's development. The amount of cement consumedcontinues to rise as emerging countries pursue their legitimate economic development goalsand their populations become more urbanized. However, by demonstrating that emissionsper tonne have been reduced, and designing a model for sectoral approaches that can betransferred to other industries, the CSI is hopeful that sectoral approaches will be recognisedby G8 as viable and complementary to a global climate agreement.