Polpaico implements alternative fuels

Polpaico implements alternative fuels
Published: 31 January 2006

Chilean cement producer Cemento Polpaico is implementing an alternative-fuel system that currently covers five per cent of production and will rise to 30-40 per cent in the next five years, as an alternative fuel to fight the increasing costs of traditional fuels, a Polpaico spokesperson told Bnamericas.

Although current alternative fuels cover only five per cent of Polpaico’s production, the rate is projected to increase to 30-40 per cent in the next five years, and the company’s energy costs will decrease dramatically by 2010, he added.

According to Polpaico’s recently released 2005 financial results, the company increased revenues and reduced administrative and sales costs, but a rise in production costs caused a 5.2 per cent decrease in net earnings when compared to 2004. According to Polpaico, the only influencing factor in the raise of production cost were fuels.

This year the company’s net profits came to 14.6bn pesos (US$27.8m), while 2004 profits totaled 15.4bn pesos. Revenues reached 133bn pesos, up 9.2 per cent from 2004. However, operating costs increased 17.6 per cent year-on-year to 103bn pesos in 2005.

Fuel costs are expected to increase even more this year, and the company will continue to work in increasing alternative-fuel production to fight increasing costs of fuels. Cement sales for 2005 reached 1.4Mt, up 4.9 per cent over the year-before period, while concrete sales came to 1.8M cu m, a 14 per cent increase. Polpaico - part of Holcim - controls about 35 per cent of Chile’s cement market.