Taiheiyo Cement is accelerating efforts to expand the export to China and Southeast Asia of its technologies to recycle a variety of municipal waste and byproducts by using them in cement production, without sacrificing cement quality.
The move is to compensate for weak demand in Japan for cement, its main product, amid reduced construction activity in both the private and public sectors, while meeting the challenges in China and Southeast Asia of safely and economically processing waste generated in their urban areas, where populations and consumption are rising rapidly. Shipments of cement in Japan have been falling for 38 months, with no signs of a potential turnaround in sight.
Taiheiyo developed and commercialized its technologies to lower its operating costs while serving societal and industry needs. One of these technologies involves washing out the chlorine and heavy metals contained in municipal-waste incineration ash and using the cleaned ash to make eco-cement, with 670 kg of ash used to produce one ton of eco-cement compared with 100 kg of ash to produce one ton of ordinary cement.
In China, the company sealed in November 2009 an agreement with a cement producer in Dalian to supply its technology for eco-cement production. It also has an agreement with a provider of waste-disposal services in Xinjiang autonomous region to provide its process for chlorine removal. It said that it was receiving favourable feedback from both cement producers and municipalities that operate waste-disposal facilities.