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Cement company ties up with public, private sectors to address waste woes

To help reduce the impact of the trash it has been generating, a cement firm has been offering waste coprocessing to its partner communities and entities.

Coprocessing is a common method by cement manufacturers the world over that recovers the energy and mineral content of wastes that serve as substitute fuels or alternative raw materials to produce cement in a single operation.

The process fully burns litters, such as plastics, at 1,450 degrees Celsius in a kiln chamber, retrieving from them thermal and mineral properties that provide the energy needed to make cement.

In the Philippines, where the most common garbage disposal methods are thermal destruction and chemical or physical treatment, they still end up in landfills in the form of ashes and treated wastes.

With coprocessing, wastes are not merely transformed into a productive cement product, it also helps lower greenhouse-gas emissions, minimize waste handling costs, and supports sustainable solutions in solving the perennial plastic problem in the country.

Republic Cement has optimized the use of alternative fuels, such as rice husk, saw dust and refuse-derived fuel as a substitute for its fossil fuel needs.

Using these materials as power source proved to be more eco-friendly, moving it closer to zero waste and lower carbon emissions.

The company’s plants are equipped with state-of-the-art continuous emission monitoring systems that are calibrated and maintained.

The Environmental Management Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources is mandated to guarantee businesses’ compliance to emission limits and other regulatory requirements.

While the firm offers coprocessing services to fast-moving consumer goods firms, the perpetual challenge of collecting and segregating wastes remain a tedious task.

Based on scientific estimates, around 80 percent of branded plastic residual wastes found in the ocean are from food packaging.

So to encourage businesses to at least mitigate their production of such rubbish, Republic Cement offers “Plastic Neutrality” option to partners.

This initiative aims to decrease single-use plastics and converting wastes into resources which in the case of the cement manufacturer is an alternative fuel.

Last year, Republic Cement signed partnerships with companies seeking to become plastic neutral. They are Nestlé, Century Pacific Food and Shakey’s Pizza Asia Ventures.

“With more Filipino companies embracing the plastic-neutrality concept, we are confident that we will continue to make strides for a greener and stronger Republic,” said Nabil Francis, chief executive officer of Republic Cement.

Besides the private sector, the company has, likewise, tied up with local government units, including the City of Manila; Valenzuela; Paete and Liliw in Laguna; Norzagaray and San Jose del Monte in Bulacan; Teresa in Rizal; Taysan and Lipa City in Batangas; and San Fernando, Lubao,w Sasmuan and Mexico in Pampanga.

This story was written by Roderick Abad and was first published in Business Mirror on August 16, 2020.


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