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18 January 2022

Italgas and Buzzi Unicem sign an agreement to study the feasibility of Power to Gas plants to decarbonize cement production processes

Italgas and Buzzi Unicem have signed an agreement for the development of a feasibility study on the implementation of Power to Gas plants in combination with Carbon Capture Systems at Buzzi Unicem's production plants.

The implementation of these technologies is aimed at promoting the decarbonization of cement and concrete production processes in order to increase environmental sustainability and facilitate the energy transition. In particular, the study will assess the possibility of producing and using, in the most suitable Buzzi Unicem plants, synthetic methane obtained from the combination of green hydrogen produced by the Power to Gas plants with part of the CO2 released in the production processes.

The agreement leverages on the solid experience gained by Italgas with the development of a Power to Gas project in Sardinia to produce green hydrogen with the aim of testing its uses also in urban contexts, in public transport and in supplying local energy-intensive industries.

"We strongly believe in Power to Gas technology – Paolo Gallo, CEO of Italgas affirmed - and in its strategic contribution to the energy transition in terms of sector coupling. The production of hydrogen from renewable sources enables the use of gas networks in the dual function of carrier and energy storage asset, ensuring greater flexibility to the system. The agreement represents a great opportunity for us to take a further step forward in the study of innovative solutions and technological best practices. Therefore, we are pleased to share with Buzzi Unicem the know-how we have developed in the design of the Italgas P2G plant that will be built in Sardinia, creating the first technological showcase of the green hydrogen production chain in Italy".

Luigi Buzzi, Group Technical Director at Buzzi Unicem, confirms that "we are very interested in the opportunity to collaborate with Italgas as an experienced partner to develop a project that is fully integrated into our industrial investment plan aimed at identifying technologies for capturing and reusing the CO2 released by our plants, in line with the roadmaps defined by industry associations.
Our aim is to responsibly contribute to containing climate change by developing CO2 capture technologies and identifying the best solutions for its reuse. We are currently experimenting with Calcium Looping technology for capturing the carbon dioxide released by the production process at our plant in Vernasca (PC). Thanks to the EU Horizon 2020 project "CLEANKER" (CLEAN- clinKER), it will be possible to assess the technical and economic sustainability of this technology and estimate the changes to the plant and the investments required to adopt this process in existing cement plants.
We are ready to face the ecological transition with great determination and motivated to start the Power to Gas project with Italgas soon, hoping that this new technology can be adopted on a large scale in the future".

2021

20 October 2021

Dialog with the territory, the benefits of working with an eye towards mutual growth

Buzzi Unicem presents its stakeholder engagement projects and reiterates its invitation to communicate, actively participate in schools and collaborate with local communities

All Buzzi Unicem plants are open again for hosting visits.
After a period during which we were forced to slow down our activities, our engineers, technicians and all our staff are now ready to safely welcome anyone who wants to learn more about cement production and the technologies used throughout the production process, ranging from the extraction of raw materials through to the grinding and shipping of clinker.

Buzzi Unicem views Stakeholder Engagement as a systematic process aimed at creating value, and is a fundamental tool for promoting the active involvement of people and sharing the principles and values on which our company is founded.

Numerous projects and initiatives have stemmed from this virtuous process, with the goal of strengthening our synergistic relationships with local communities and creating mutual prosperity and growth. During these last few years, our plants have been the stage for “encounters with art”, and occasions for gatherings and discussions on many topics of interest for local communities. We plan to reiterate our invitation to continue on this path of active involvement by evaluating new projects and initiatives together, site by site.  

We strongly believe in the mutual enrichment deriving from the school-work rotation programs that offer an opportunity for young students to plan their future and prepare their entry into the working world.
Known as “High Five”, this initiative has been developed in conjunction with the schools and is based on the principle of “learn by doing”, by fostering a close-knit collaboration between businesses and educational institutions. The project is an excellent vehicle for overcoming the traditional separation between the worlds of school and work by bringing them closer together through shared pathways aimed at reducing the time of entry into the working world for the younger generations. We have systematically resumed this project and have already received several requests for collaboration from schools.

In terms of continuous improvement, Buzzi Unicem pursues the creation of value through stakeholder engagement best practices, continuing the approach it has taken for several years in sharing common basic principles and standards of honesty and transparency. .


Would you like to visit a cement plant?

To visit a cement plant, please send an email or call one of the contacts listed in the following link: Open plants


High 5: Relationships with schools

For further details:

"Hive Five": School-work rotation
For information and applications for work rotations at the company, please send a request to: scuola@buzziunicem.it


Stakeholder Engagement – for further information on the approach taken by Buzzi Unicem and details on the projects in 2020:

Stakeholder Engagement
Report Stakeholder Engagement

09 September 2021

Family & Friends: welcome to the cement plant Buzzi Unicem’s Fanna plant is opening its doors to talk about cement, the environment and the future

On September 25th, Buzzi Unicem’s Fanna plant will host its fifth edition of Family & Friends, an open day at the cement plant dedicated to employees, family members and anyone else who is interested in attending.

Family & Friends allows visitors to see the entire operations of the cement plant, participate in seminars on environmental topics, and sessions and workshops designed for people of all ages.

Many topics will be presented, ranging from the waste management cycle and energy recovery, to the cement industry’s role in the circular economy, sustainability, innovation within the cement sector and its applications.

There will also be many informative stands where visitors can learn more about Buzzi Unicem’s initiatives within the local community, programs specifically designed for schools and universities, occupational health and safety policies, and much more.

Children and teens will be able to participate in workshops and educational games on waste separation practices and the waste management cycle, as well as a workshop focused on nutrition and the nutritional elements of food.  

The event will also include representatives from local associations and schools, and will conclude with a performance by the Maniago Philharmonic orchestra.

Family and Friends will open at 8:30 AM and close at 18:30 PM.  All the activities, tours and sessions have been organized in compliance with the national and regional regulations on the COVID-19 pandemic currently in effect.

A green pass is required to attend the event, and the number of places will be limited.
For reservations, please send an email to visitafanna@buzziunicem.it by September 20th 2021 at the latest.

23 July 2021

Confirmation of project shortcomings highlighted by Buzzi Unicem

The lack of correlation between the detection of heavy metals and the onset of illness or health problems was highlighted at the technical meeting between ASL and the municipality of Barletta and the signatories of the memorandum of understanding on the biomonitoring of children’s nails. 

It was also learned that Dr. Agostini Di Ciaula himself explained that epidemiological studies are needed, admitting that this is an evolving scientific area with no benchmark standards that would give cause for any immediate concern. 

The lack of benchmark standards for the biological sample selected was just one of the aspects that Buzzi Unicem had drawn attention to from the beginning, pointing out the apparent shortcomings that could render the conclusions of the study in question entirely hypothetical. 
Another important aspect that must be carefully evaluated by the authorities is the absence of any correlation with the business activities of the Barletta cement plant.

The company therefore reiterates its complete willingness to collaborate with the authorities involved in the project, fully believing in the importance of providing thorough and accurate information to the citizenry rather than data of dubious value that would only create a climate of insinuation. 

The true undertaking lies in conducting the evaluations methodically and scientifically based on objective and detailed data, which we believe is the only way that can provide the appropriate environmental information.

14 July 2021

Buzzi Unicem finds obvious shortcomings in the metal bioaccumulation study conducted in Barletta by Mr. Di Ciaula

With regard to the study by Mr. Agostino Di Ciaula, conducted at the Barletta cement plant and recently published in the "Exposure and Health" journal, Buzzi Unicem has taken note of the results and has begun a process of in-depth analysis, in order to carefully evaluate the findings of this study.

An initial analysis has revealed obvious shortcomings which could invalidate the study in question. It is therefore considered necessary for the competent authorities to assess the thesis presented in order to provide the public with the proper information.

By way of example, below are some aspects that should be highlighted:

• the emission fallout considered by the research does not reflect the actual situation;
• during the reference period, the kiln at the Barletta cement plant was not running for more than half of the time for air quality purposes;
• the data was published in a biased manner, which did not allow a full analysis of the situation observed;
• for several metals, the study found higher concentrations in the fingernails of children not subjected to the fallout from cement plant emissions;
• the biological samples on the fingernails are prone to external contamination, presenting important critical points in the assessment of environmental exposure in the absence of reliable comparison values. 

The document prepared by Buzzi Unicem will soon be shared with all the competent bodies, with a view to transparency and accountability.

The company reaffirms its commitment to protecting the health and well-being of the communities in which it operates and strives to address in-depth the concerns of many citizens, in everyone’s interest.
 

28 June 2021

2020 cement plant figures available

The key cement plant figures for 2020 are available, reported in individual brochures that can be downloaded from this link as well as obtainable in paper form during plant visits. 

The purpose is to inform our stakeholders about Buzzi Unicem production site activities from both a strictly operational standpoint as well as our presence within the community. More specifically, the data are organized into two main areas, namely the specific figures for each plant and the overall figures for the Group. 
The individual plant figures focus on the environment, employee accidents, events involving the plant and atmospheric emissions. 

The environmental data include the tons of recovered raw materials (circular economy), the kilowatt hours consumed to produce one ton of cementitious material, the megacalories used to produce one ton of clinker, and the environment and safety investments made during the 2018-2020 three-year period. With respect to the atmospheric emissions, we report the figures for dust, nitrogen oxides and sulfur oxides. 

The overall Group figures include the key data for Buzzi Unicem S.p.A, the certifications obtained and the Group’s policies. 

06 May 2021

Buzzi Unicem presents its 2020 Sustainability Report. Attention to environmental issues and help for the local communities for the Covid emergency: these are the topics of focus in the 2020 Sustainability Report

The 2020 edition of Buzzi Unicem’s Sustainability report was presented today.

In addition to accurate reporting of economic, environmental and social indicators, the document also provides an update on objectives and targets, in line with the policies promoted by the company.

From an economic standpoint, the financial results show an improvement on the levels achieved in 2019 despite the difficulties related to the health emergency. The company hopes that both the vaccination plans and the economic stimulus announced by governments will strengthen demand for the sector and contribute to growth.

On the environmental level, the report illustrates the Group's commitment to reducing CO2 which in absolute value, in 2020, was down mainly due to a lower production of clinker and a lower use of electricity.

The year 2021 will be crucial for the definition of new targets for the reduction of CO2 emissions in the medium term, while the goal of climate neutrality by 2050, already announced by Cembureau - the European Cement Manufacturers' Association - could also be confirmed by the end of the year by the global association GCCA (Global Cement and Concrete Association), of which Buzzi Unicem is a member. For the company this is a complex and stimulating challenge, which it does not want to shy away from.

Social performance highlights the results of good practices in terms of health and safety at work and confirms the downward trend in workplace accidents in recent years. In addition, in order to mitigate the problems related to the health emergency, the company has decided to help people in difficulty in the countries where the Group's plants operate by donating over € 3 million to provide tangible help, in collaboration with various non-profit organizations.

Lastly, the company noticed that interest in non-financial information is growing and thus reiterates its commitment to constantly improving the quality and level of detail of non-financial information.

30 April 2021

“2020 Stakeholder Engagement Report” - An important step in the dialogue with stakeholders and the local communities in which we operate

The first edition of the 2020 Stakeholder Engagement Report aims to report on the many initiatives undertaken by Buzzi Unicem in favor of all stakeholders, mainly in the areas where the company operates.

The projects are part of the Stakeholder Engagement Policy and the intention is to highlight the constructive dialogue established over the years, sharing in a transparent manner the activities underway and the company's short and medium-term strategies.

The year 2020 was a difficult one, but despite everything we managed to strengthen our commitments to the community and establish new partnerships. The report identifies the main areas - social, cultural, educational and sports - on which it was deemed appropriate to focus, also on the basis of the needs expressed by the local communities.

In spite of the many difficulties that schools have had to face in recent months, School-Work activities have continued through the Webinar channel, which has been positively accepted and has become a consolidated practice for keeping in touch with the students.

Buzzi Unicem is fully aware of the importance of building and maintaining relationships of trust, based on mutual respect, active partnership, transparency and long-term collaboration with its stakeholders, in order to create shared value.

03 November 2021

Clarification on the M5S inquiry to lower the emission limits of PCBs

With reference to the parliamentary inquiry of MEP Eleonora Avi, through which the question of the emission limits for PCBs was put to the Commission, and to the relevant statements made by Luca Sut, spokesman of the 5 Star Movement, Buzzi Unicem hereby informs that comparing the emission concentrations of certain gases with the WHO tolerance limits has no scientific basis.

In particular, the concentrations of PCB emitted at the chimney are wrongly contested, based on calculations that would claim to correlate the emissions of the plant to the number of inhabitants in the area and to levels of exposure considered acceptable for this type of substances.

Such correlations are groundless, as already represented several times, at least for the following reasons.
In particular, the concentrations of PCB emitted at the chimney are wrongly contested, based on calculations that would claim to correlate the emissions of the plant to the number of inhabitants in the area and to levels of exposure considered acceptable for this type of substances.

Such correlations are groundless, as already represented several times, at least for the following reasons:

According to the measurements taken, the concentrations of emissions measured at the chimney are about 7,000 times lower than their legal limit.

Moreover, the emissions are subject to dispersive phenomena which significantly reduce, even by thousands of times, the concentrations of pollutants in the atmosphere at ground level.

In the case of the Fanna Plant, for the various parameters studied, including PCBs, the most modern fallout models show that emissions are on average 200,000 times lower than chimney emissions.

The presence of an emission source (the cement plant) is not more or less dangerous depending on the number of people living in the area where it is located. For the individual inhabitant, there is no variation in the "dangerousness” and this is why it is methodologically wrong to make calculations that divide the emissions by the number of inhabitants; if this were the case, a larger population would paradoxically lead to an improvement in air quality.

Finally, we would like to point out that the Fanna Plant complies not only with the limit set for PCBs, to which the activists refer, but also with the more restrictive limit set for PCB-DLs as a subset of total PCBs.

 

 

04 March 2021

Details on waste co-incineration: for Europe it is a sound practice, sustainable and respectful of the waste hierarchy

In view of the position of the environmental committees of Fanna and Maniago, which would like to qualify co-incineration as a harmful practice and contrary to the principles of circular economy, Buzzi Unicem wishes to provide the following explanations on an issue of fundamental importance for proper waste management, maximum utilization of recoverable fractions and savings of non-renewable fossil resources.

Solid Secondary Fuel (SSF) that can be used in the cement production cycle comes from the recovery of that fraction of waste which, at the end of separate collection, cannot be further reused or recycled. In particular, in order to be used as fuel these materials are carefully selected, processed and transformed into SSF.

This is a form of recycling of materials, however existing, whose alternative final destination would be disposal through incineration, landfill or export to other countries. They are not, therefore, materials taken from more valuable recycled material.

For these reasons, there is no doubt that the recycling of CSS in cement factories or other plants, such as thermoelectric power stations, fully complies with the principles of the circular economy and the European waste hierarchy. On this point, the Lazio Regional Administrative Court recently handed down sentence no. 219/2021, recognizing that "the phases of production and use of SSF-Fuel are carried out without danger to human health and environmental protection, thus placing this legislation within the more general framework of European policies for the creation and promotion of the so-called "circular economy”.

With reference to the considerations on the changed reference framework of the European directives on circular economy, the fact that waste to be used as fuel is not counted towards the recycling targets does not affect the qualification in terms of recovery, since recycling is one of the forms of recovery envisaged by the EU and - as recognized by the Lazio Regional Administrative Court - energy recovery is to be preferred to any other form of disposal that is hierarchically inferior. Material recycling and energy recovery are therefore two practices which are not contradictory but complementary instead.

It should also be noted that the production of SSF, in all its phases, allows a significant reduction in the amount actually intended for combustion: suffice it to consider that starting from 100 kg of undifferentiated waste, about 30-40 kg of SSF are obtained, following the additional selection and differentiation carried out in the production system of the SSF.

Subsequent to its production, the use of SSF in cement plants allows the useful exploitation of an existing production process, without significant changes in emissions, and actually contributes to reducing overall emissions, avoiding those due to landfill or incineration.

Finally, we reiterate that the many continuous studies on the environmental impact of the cement plant, both by the Company and - most importantly - by the relevant authorities, have never detected any anomalous or alarming data in the area concerned, especially as regards PCBs.

In this regard, in fact, we must bear in mind that there are many combustion processes, not only industrial but also civil and agricultural ones, that can generate dioxins, furans and PCBs. If we then add the fact that studies carried out by ARPA FVG have identified a situation of contamination by similar micropollutants in areas not subject to the fallout from the cement plant, we may deduce that our emissions are compatible with the context in which the cement plant is located and that, at the same time, emission checks should also be performed at other possible sources.

The Fanna Plant is always open for visits, in compliance with anti-Covid protocols: anyone wishing to learn more about the cement production process, its impacts and ask questions is welcome to the plant. Please come and visit us by writing to visitafanna@buzziunicem.it

 

 

 

2020

12 September 2020

Plant malfunction

Buzzi Unicem hereby informs that this morning, at 8.30 a.m., at the Fanna cement plant, following a temporary malfunction, a spillage of pulverized raw material (in jargon meal) occurred, which was quickly solved.

The company apologizes for any inconvenience this may have caused and points out that the spillage was mainly confined to the premises of the plant. All the competent bodies were promptly informed.

10 November 2020

Additional details on PCB emissions

With regard to what has been reported in the press over the last few days on the subject of PCB emissions, Buzzi Unicem would like to point out that the environmental impact of the cement plant is being investigated on an ongoing basis, both by the company and - above all - by the relevant authorities.

In this sense, the fact that an industrial plant and its impacts are constantly monitored and verified represents a guarantee for the environmental conditions of the entire territory.

We should also remember that there are several combustion processes, not only industrial, but also residential and agricultural, present in the area, which can generate dioxins, furans and PCBs. Regardless of whether they are authorized or not, indeed even more so if they lack the required authorization.

This position is confirmed by the same bodies that have carried out in-depth studies on the deposits of PCBs and on the possible contamination of hen eggs in the area of Fanna and Maniago.

On those occasions, the specific emissions of the plant and its effects being known, no possible environmental responsibility of the Fanna Cement Plant has ever emerged.

It is therefore surprising that the presence of the cement plant in the area is mentioned as a primary source of this type of compound and, even more so, to believe that PCBs derive from the use of incoming production materials, a fact that is disproved by the available analyses.

These statements, in fact, fail to consider the characteristics of the production cycle, the analyses themselves and - in general - the environmental guarantees in place. It is precisely the full compliance - by a wide margin besides - with many limit values set at the regulatory and authorization level on these compounds (both the one on total PCBs and the one on PCB-DLs) that represents the guarantee of the containment of any possible environmental impact deriving from the Plant.

Therefore, we would like to invite those who wish to examine this issue in depth to a constructive technical-scientific discussion, in which we are willing to share the most recent emission-related analyses that prove the minimal contribution of the cement plant (it should be noted, for example, that during the period 2018 - 2020 the determinations of PCB emissions have allowed a more precise quantification in terms of grams/year and not in terms of kg/year, as shown in the most recent data).

We are certain that this will reassure those who wish to know the actual data and who, justifiably, hope for maximum containment of environmental impacts.

The Fanna Plant is always open for visits, in compliance with anti-Covid protocols: anyone wishing to learn more about the cement production process, and its impacts, and to ask questions about it, is welcome. We invite you to visit our facilities by writing to visitafanna@buzziunicem.it

 

 

01 September 2020

Paolo Maggi, new Manager of the Fanna Plant

As of September 1, Paolo Maggi will be the new Manager of the Buzzi Unicem Plant in Fanna.

With a degree in aerospace engineering from the Milan Polytechnic, during his professional career he has held numerous positions of responsibility in Italy and abroad both for the Buzzi Unicem Group and for other international companies.

By taking on this new role, Paolo Maggi is ready to deal with the new challenge of leading the Fanna production plant and being a point of reference for a constructive and beneficial dialogue with the local community.

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