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Plants Commended for Benefiting Local Communities and Global Environment

Five cement plants received special recognition for their commitment to improving the environment and their communities at the Seventh Annual Cement Industry Environment and Energy Awards, presented by Portland Cement Association (PCA) and Cement Americas magazine, at the PCA's Spring Meeting in Chicago, April 29, 2008.

The awards honor individual cement facilities that exemplify the spirit of continuous environmental improvement and support this spirit with action. These plants went beyond government regulations and local laws to ensure that their processes and policies contributed to making their communities better places to live and work.

"The cement industry is dedicated to producing a superior product while continuously challenging manufacturing policies and procedures to minimize our environmental footprint," said Brian McCarthy, PCA president/CEO. "The activities at these plants are an example of putting this commitment into practice."

Six categories recognized plants throughout the United State (listed by category, company, and plant location):

  • Overall Environmental Excellence: CEMEX, Davenport, Calif.
  • Outreach: Lafarge North America, Sugar Creek, Mo.
  • Environmental Performance: Holcim (US) Inc., Theodore, Ala.
  • Land Stewardship: CEMEX, Davenport, Calif.
  • Innovation: Lafarge North America, Sugar Creek, Mo.
  • Energy Efficiency: California Portland Cement Company, Colton, Calif.

Overall Environmental Excellence

CEMEX - Davenport, Calif.

Honored as the winner of the Land Stewardship category and finalist in the Environmental Performance and Energy Efficiency categories, the CEMEX Davenport plant demonstrates excellence in several aspects of environmental responsibility. In 2007, the facility completed improved dust management, site paving, and stormwater controls, and made site aesthetic improvements. The plant beneficially uses all produced kiln dust and reclaims more than 26,000 tons annually from an existing dust landfill. To conserve resources, the facility collects and uses byproducts from other industries and wastewater. The plant received the 2007 U.S. EPA Energy Star award for energy efficiency. The facility routinely involves the local community in plant activities.

Outreach

Lafarge North America Inc. - Sugar Creek, Mo.

The Lafarge Sugar Creek facility has an inclusive environmental outreach program that reaches students, business owners, elected officials, and more. In 2007, the plant joined the Greater Kansas City Climate Protection Partnership. Coordinated by the area Chamber of Commerce, the group supports economic competitiveness and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, the plant hosted an open house of its new alternate solid fuels facility, which was attended by local elected officials, environmental professionals, and regulators. The plant continuously strives to participate in the life of its local communities, taking part in everything from Independence Day parades to teaching environmental units at local high schools to sponsoring Earth Day activities for the community.

Environmental Performance Award

Holcim (US) Inc. - Theodore, Alabama

The Holcim Theodore facility has developed programs to respond to air, water, and solid waste emissions. It is well below the state air emission limits on particulate matter and other emissions. All cement kiln dust is reused within the manufacturing process, which limits carbon dioxide emissions. Additionally, it used approximately 10,000 gallons of site-generated oil for an energy recovery fuel in the kiln. In 2007, no stormwater was released from the cement manufacturing plant or from the plant's off-site limestone and clay quarries.

Land Stewardship

CEMEX - Davenport, Calif.

The CEMEX Davenport plant has established a diverse land stewardship program. In 2007, the plant partnered with University of California in Santa Clara to complete an inventory of the diverse plant communities at the facility. UCSC also collected flora and fauna from the site for its arboretum, one of the largest and well known in the world. The CEMEX plant earned the Forest Stewardship Council Smartwood Certification from the Rain Forest Alliance for the management of its 9,000-acre forest, which includes the annual planting of 20,000 redwood seedlings. In 2007, CEMEX reclaimed more than 20 acres of the quarry with the planting of native habitats. Additionally, the plant maintains Habitat Conservation Plan protected areas, including streams that are home to the threatened Coho salmon and steelhead trout.

Innovation

Lafarge North America Inc. - Sugar Creek, Mo.

Energy utilization is a concern of all cement plants. The Lafarge Sugar Creek plant has found innovative means to address their energy needs. In 2007, the plant commissioned an alternative fuels processing facility that will store, shred, and weigh various industrial byproducts, which will be pneumatically fed, into the kiln preheater tower. The plant expects to replace 40% of the required fossil fuels with industrial byproducts such as rubber, plastics, cellulose, and textiles. The plant has also successfully utilized landfill gas; in 2007, more than 1.2 million standard cubic feet of gas was used from an adjacent municipal landfill, resulting in a reduction of more than 11,000 tons of carbon dioxide. A contract with a second nearby landfill may triple the landfill gas available to this cement plant.

Energy Efficiency

California Portland Cement Company - Colton, Calif.

The California Portland Cement Company (CPCC) Colton plant's efficiency program has resulted in major energy reductions, preventing the emission of tens of thousands of tons of carbon dioxide and saving the company thousand of dollars. In 2007, CPCC added a corporate Director of Energy Services who with other senior executives and plant staff supervises energy conservation efforts. Energy efficiency projects have included compress air system improvements, air leakage reduction for waste heat boilers, grinding mill optimization, drive belt replacement, high efficiency motor installation, tighter cement grinding controls, and kiln operation improvements. In 2007, the Colton plant scored 100% on the U.S. EPA Energy Star benchmarking program and received the Energy Star Sustained Excellence Award.

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