Cement operator credits 8,000-tpy CO2 emissions cut to solar field

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Sources: Buzzi Unicem USA Inc., Bethlehem, Pa.; CMCM staff 

Alamo Cement Co. will source up to 15 percent of annual electricity requirements for its San Antonio plant from a new 24,700-panel solar field built adjacent to the operation’s limestone quarry. Full use of the 45-acre renewable energy infrastructure will position the plant to lower carbon dioxide emissions by 8,000 tons/year. As energy demands rise, Alamo Cement notes, the on-site power system reduces dependence on the local grid, thus alleviating stress on the central Texas electrical grid.

The Alamo Cement solar field has the capacity to generate up to 17,800 megawatt-hours per year and is the largest such customer-owned project in CPS Energy’s Texas service area.

“We are committed to furthering the cement industry’s goal of decarbonizing and this project is a major step in the right direction,” says Alamo Cement and (parent) Buzzi Unicem USA President and CEO Massimo Toso. “We continue to look for more opportunities to enhance sustainability in our operations, and plan to build on our experience from this San Antonio project and explore implementing additional renewable power systems within our Group.”

“The multi-discipline work that went into this first-of-its-kind project is an example of the type of collaboration necessary to continue to unlock and apply new energy sources for cement producers,” adds Buzzi Unicem Director of Engineering and Construction Management William Kovacs. “It brought together our corporate team, CPS Energy and regional engineering firms and contractors.”

“Projects like this are a testament to the work CPS Energy has done and continues to do in collaborating with those who share a common goal of moving towards a sustainable future for our city and are committed to reducing the local demand for energy,” affirms CPS Vice President of Enterprise Risk and Development Jonathan Tijerina. 

Alamo Cement is one of eight Buzzi Unicem USA plants, whose combined annual capacity hovers 10 million metric tons.

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