By Eman Hamed
Lafarge Egypt, a member of Holcim Group, held a press conference titled “Cement Industry & Sustainable Development”, in cooperation with Dcode Economic & Financial Consulting (EFC).
This comes in line with Lafarge Egypt’s endeavors to reinforce environmental sustainability, and prevent climate change aligning with Egypt vision 2030. Committed to Holcim’s objectives, Lafarge Egypt contributes to lowering CO2 emissions by more than 20%, compared to baseline for 2018, and contributes to Holcim goals, which joined the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).
The SBTi has approved Holcim’s commitment to reduce scope 1 GHG emissions by 10% per ton of cementitious materials by 2030 from a 2018 base year. Holcim also commits to reduce scope 2 GHG emissions from purchased electricity by 65% within the same time frame and Embraces the goal of “Cement Industry Ambition for 1.5°C by 2050”. Holcim is the first global building materials company to sign the pledge with intermediate targets, validated by SBTi.
Delivering an overview of climate change and Egyptian economy, Mohamed Abdel Aziz, Chairman and CEO, Dcode Economic & Financial Consulting (EFC) reviewed Egypt’s strategy and efforts to address climate change, along with cement industry’s challenges and actions. He emphasized that the private sector plays a pivotal role towards low carbon future, through investment in research and development into breakthrough solutions, utilizing recycled materials and adopting renewable energy sources.
He mentioned that through upgrading specifications to serve sustainable development goals, and enabling production of green cement, the state has a prominent responsibility encouraging and facilitating usage of ecofriendly products in construction sector. Abdel Aziz also indicated that Lafarge Egypt sets an example for the private sector’s contributions to solving climate change problem towards achieving SDGs.”
Chairman and CEO, Dcode EFC elaborated: “I am delighted to be here today with Lafarge Egypt, the cement industry’s renowned leader and most prominent cement player in environmental sustainability. Hand in hand, we raise stakeholders’ awareness of the current economic development impact on CO2 emissions, along with the different sectors accountability to reduce carbon footprint, especially energy intensive industries, such as cement industry. Taking into consideration the current and future environmental challenges, we tackle the importance of reinforcing cement industry to face these challenges along with maximizing its competitiveness locally and globally.”
Solomon Baumgartner Aviles, CEO of Lafarge Egypt, commented: “We, at Lafarge Egypt, believe in our responsibility to preserve the environment, adopting the main pillars of Egypt vision 2030, sustainable development and circular economy. He added we are Dedicated to contributing to achieving Holcim’s objectives, to lowering CO2 emissions by more than 20%, compared to baseline for 2018. Lafarge Egypt also supports its parent company which joined the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), embracing the goal of “Cement Industry Ambition for 1.5°C by 2050.” Holcim is the first global building materials company to sign the pledge with intermediate targets for 2030, validated by SBTi. We strive hard to use alternative fuel, derived from waste, byproducts & biomass, implement waste heat recovery in producing energy, in addition to generating green power introducing renewable energy sources.”
Revealing another mutual pillar with Egypt vision 2030, Mr. Baumgartner highlighted how Lafarge Egypt employs innovation to manufacture green products, such as Pozzolanic Cement, with lower clinker & CO2 emission, in addition to EcoPlanet and EcoPlanet Prime, which utilize recycled slag and lower Co2 emissions by 50% and 60% respectively.
CEO of Lafarge Egypt added that the company is also keen on achieving growth complying with Egypt vision 2030. He confirmed that paving the way to cement producers to export requires governmental support, which would enable Lafarge Egypt to actualize its plans to open new export markets.
He revealed the importance of lifting taxes on production inputs such as limestone granules, linking energy prices with the global standards & securing its availability, reducing payback time period in Export Subsidize Support Program, enhancing ports infrastructure, and establishing intensive trades & efficient ports’ structure.”
Solomon Baumgartner Aviles expressed his deep appreciation, for the government’s unceasing support, promoting construction sector and allowing Lafarge Egypt to create more achievements along with complementing its witnessed success in multiple development projects. Lafarge Egypt contributed to establishing energy projects, including power plants in Ain El Sokhna, Burullus, South Helwan, Banha and New Administrative Capital. Also, the company achieved significant success in transport sector with projects of Greater Cairo Metro, Suez Canal Tunnels and Cairo International Airport.
As for tourism sector, the company handled several prominent projects like Marassi North Coast, Grand Egyptian Museum, in addition to several shopping malls. Last, Lafarge Egypt catered for the housing sector, encompassing all types of projects from affordable to high class in cooperation with giant developers.