The global challenges posed by climate change have always been a key issue for CEMEX, and the company is committed to applying its ideas, its skills, its technologies, and its determination to contribute to the development of a low-carbon economy.
In response to the ever growing concern over the emission of environmentally damaging greenhouse gases – most notably carbon dioxide (CO2)– Cemex continues to expand its intensive use of low-carbon, cost-effective alternative fuels.
As part of its global strategy, Cemex is setting new records for the increased identification, preparation, and use of alternative fuels at the company’s cement plants around the world.
In Germany, the Rüdersdorf plant recently achieved a new record for Cemex’s European operations, utilising alternative fuels for 85% of the energy required in the production of cement, a result of its strategy applied since 1997.
Similarly, in Poland, alternative fuels account for approximately 80% of the total fuel consumption in the Chelm cement plant, maintaining this facility as the leader among the cement industry.
These plants primarily use refuse-derived fuel (RDF), obtained from specialized waste management plants that collect, treat, and turn municipal and commercial waste into a solid, safe fuel. This highly developed process allows CEMEX to acquire such fuel and contribute to the welfare of neighboring communities by disposing of their waste. Just in Poland, during 2009, 752 thousand tons of waste were processed thermally by cement plants and is expected to grow to more than 1Mt by 2012.
Beyond Europe, the Assiut cement plant in Egypt attained a new record for alternative fuel substitution. Today, alternative materials – mainly rice husks, corn cobs, and wood waste – account for 23% of the plant’s total energy consumption and nearly 40% of the fuel used on their number one production line. With the recent installation of a tire shredding machine, the Egyptian operations look to continue increasing the plant’s alternative fuel substitution rates, as well as the calorific value of its energy mix.