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Press Release

Holcim and GTZ set benchmarks for co-processing of waste materials in the cement industry

Holcim Ltd and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GTZ) have drawn up guidelines for the utilization of waste materials in the cement industry in the context of their three-year partnership. These were presented to an expert audience today in Eschborn, Germany. Holcim and GTZ have extended their partnership to 2008 in order to advance the implementation of the guidelines.

The GTZ-Holcim guidelines set new standards for the processing of certain residues in the cement industry. Alternative fuels and secondary raw materials obtained from waste products are being used rather than fossil fuels and primary raw materials. The correct application of this method termed as co-processing represents an economically reasonable and environmentally friendly alternative to the traditional disposal of waste.

Holcim is a pioneer in the use of new, environmentally compatible technologies in cement production, and a leading user of alternative fuels and raw materials. The potential and the need for action are especially great in developing and newly industrialized countries. Ever increasing quantities of waste are disposed of in an uncontrolled manner, incinerated or dumped in poorly operated landfill sites. This often includes hazardous waste. As a result, contaminated soil and polluted water jeopardize the livelihood and health of the local population. Better waste management can reduce the risks and save on landfill space. To raise awareness of this problem, GTZ has opened doors and acted as a mediator between governments, companies, non-governmental organizations and international organizations.

No additional emissions, unchanged product quality, and the consideration of national circumstances are just three of the principles stated in the GTZ-Holcim guidelines. As a working basis for cement producers and governments, the guidelines represent a contribution to the long-term solution of the global waste problem and the responsible use of fossil fuels and primary raw materials.

GTZ and Holcim cooperate in the framework of a Public Private Partnership (PPP), under a program of the German Ministry for Development.

Holcim is one of the world's leading suppliers of cement and aggregates (crushed stone, sand and gravel) as well as further activities such as ready-mix concrete and asphalt including services. The Group holds majority and minority interests in more than 70 countries on all continents.

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH is a globally-operating company for international co-operation and sustainable development. For 30 years GTZ has been developing pioneering solutions for political, economic, ecological and social developments in a globalized world. GTZ supports complex reforms and change processes, even where conditions are difficult. Its goal is to improve people's living conditions and prospects in the long term. GTZ is primarily funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).


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