TCL carbon cement

AS the world battles climate change, Claxton Bay manufacturer Trinidad Cement Ltd (TCL) says it is doing its part by offering its ECO Cement.

The brand has achieved the CEMEX Vertua seal, the company’s global standard for products which offer a reduction in carbon emissions ranging from 15 per cent to over 40 per cent during production, TCL officials said yesterday.

CEMEX is TCL’s majority shareholder.

The ECO Cement brand is also cheaper.

The low-carbon product has actually been on the local market since June 5, 2020.

It retails at $43 per bag, and is available at hardware stores island-wide. Regular cement costs between $43 and $45 per bag.

At a virtual meeting yesterday, Reshma Gooljar-­Singh, sales distributor segment manager at TCL, said climate change has been a priority of CEMEX for many years, and now the company has set a new, more aggressive target to be below 475kg CO2, an approximate 40 per cent reduction in CO2 emissions by the year 2030.

“Achieving the Vertua... low carbon by design seal is a strong testimony to this and the local cement manufacturer’s attentiveness to climate change,” she said.

Also speaking on the achievement was TCL country manager Guillermo Rojo, who said research and development for the ECO Cement cost $500,000.

He said the biggest hurdle might not be coming up with low-carbon solutions, but getting the construction industry to adopt them.

He admitted that clients were understandably cautious about using new building materials that promote lower emissions—mistaking them for having reduced strength.

“That’s why educating customers on the use of this cement is so important in order for them to understand the benefits of this ECO Cement,” Rojo said.

It may be one of the hardest industries to decarbonise, but Rojo hopes to see trust building in the product.

He said the durability of the cement was just as good as the regular product, and can be used for foundations, piling, suspended slabs, general use, house and garage ground floor slabs, external concrete for pavements and hard standing driveways, and industrial floors.

“The brand’s distinctive features are its ease of use and placement, suitability for pumping and the fact that it meets all international standards,” Rojo added.

A Reuters story earlier this week stated that global cement and concrete makers have laid out steps to cut carbon dioxide emissions 25 per cent by 2030, and to reach zero net emissions by mid-century, relying on more carbon-free energy, new chemistry and manufacturing technology, and ­carbon capture.

Cement, the glue of concrete, accounts for about seven per cent of global carbon emissions.

RECOMMENDED FOR YOU

MORE private/public sector engagement in Trinidad and Tobago’s agriculture industry is needed, as Covid-19 has placed a serious economic meltdown on government’s finances.

This was revealed by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) representative for Trinidad and Tobago, Ruben Robertson, who said instead of the Government making the investment in the agricultural sector, it is now recognised that it might be better to focus more on making the policy environment more conducive for the private sector to come on board.

For Hannah Daniel, 30, farming was a way to make ends meet.

A former make-up artist, she had lost her job during the pandemic and turned to her plants as a source of nourishment and solace.

With restricted movement as a result of lockdowns, her neighbours started coming to her to buy produce.

Trinidad and Tobago Securities and Exchange Commission

IN the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, governments are discussing how to rebuild their economies. It should be noted that the pandemic has not stopped the climate emergency and it will not prevent the risks from extreme weather events as well as other climate-related shocks that threaten us now and in the future. This article discusses what can be expected from a securities regulator for sustainable finance development.

Another call for an aggressive and comprehensive plan for a transition to renewable energy in Trinidad and Tobago, an oil and gas-based economy, is coming from the country’s business community.

COVID-19 has changed the way we work.

Even before the pandemic, the US workforce increasingly relied on remote collaboration technologies like videoconferencing and Slack. The global crisis accelerated the adoption of these work tools and practices in an unprecedented way. By April 2020, about half of companies reported that more than 80 per cent of their employees worked from home because of Covid-19.