Holcim to establish P250M waste-to-energy facility

DAVAO CITY  (MindaNews/5 Aug) – Cement manufacturer Holcim will invest P250 million for the establishment of a waste-to-energy facility dubbed “Geocycle” in Brgy. Ilang, Bunawan District here.

Rolando Van Wijen, chief operating officer of Holcim Philippines, said they are looking into using rice husks and other wastes to convert to fuel. The company plans to get rice husks within the region and collect wastes like plastics and used oil from the city.

“It is one way to deal with the wastes in the city,” he said, adding that it will also help extend the lifespan of the city-owned sanitary landfill in New Carmen, Tugbok to more than 15 years.

Data from the City Environment and Natural Resources Office showed that the city has an average waste of 380 tons per day.

The cement company will soon formally discuss its proposal to the city government. At present, the firm is still on the planning phase of the project. It would be their third Geocycle in the country next to Bulacan and Lugait, Misamis Oriental where the firm’s cement plants are situated.

Joseph Bernal, manager and vice president for operations of Holcim Davao plant, said the establishment of the facility will also help them reduce coal consumption for their cement plant. He said they currently use 600 tons of coal per day for thermal fuel.

With the Geocycle, he said they will save about 30 percent of thermal substitution. He said the rice husks and other wastes will be shredded, segregated and dried to process those materials and make them as fuel which is the end product.

“There will be less emissions compared to burning coal. There would be minimal impact to the environment,” he said.

The project is eyed to be constructed by next year.

The company, meanwhile, launched last Friday the sustainable barangay manual, a project in partnership with the Green Architecture Advocacy of the Philippines, during their multi-sectoral forum dubbed Holcim Coffeetalks on sustainable construction.

Holcim said in a statement that “the manual will serve as a guideline for local government and private sector towards building communities in a way that is socially, economically, functionally and aesthetically balanced” (MindaNews)