Lafarge, the largest supplier of cement products in the U.S. and Canada, has officially opened a new state-of-the-art alternate solid fuels facility in Sugar Creek, MO. Representing a $7-million (U.S.) investment, the 22,000-sq.-ft. facility is designed to process industrial byproduct materials from manufacturing firms throughout the region into fuel required for production operations at the Lafarge Sugar Creek Cement Plant. Using this alternate solid fuel will meet 40 per cent of the plant’s total energy requirements, and will reduce the plant’s reliance on fossil fuels (i.e., coal) by 50,000 tons annually, which is equivalent to removing 6,629 passenger cars from the roadways or providing electricity to 3,931 households each year. It also diverts 50,000 tons of locally generated industrial byproduct materials from landfills each year.
The new alternate solid fuels program supplements the plant’s existing landfill gas program, which has been collecting methane gas from two closed landfills since August 2005. This methane gas currently accounts for 7 per cent of fuels, which is approximately one ton per hour of solid fuel, replacing about 8,000 metric tons of coal or petroleum coke annually and offsetting more than 10,200 tons of carbon dioxide emissions. With the recent addition of gas from an adjacent active landfill, methane gas could eventually account for approximately 20 per cent of the fuel needed at the plant, replacing about 20,000 metric tons of coal or petroleum coke annually.