16th NCB International Seminar on Cement, Concrete and Building Materials
Dr. B.N.Mohapatra, Director General -NCB, Chairman Organising Committee The Director General - NCB, welcomed the delegates who were 1200 in numbers and came from various countries like China, Japan, Czech Republic, France, U.K., Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Portugal, Italy, Yemen, Nepal and Bhutan. He added saying that cement industry plays a vital role because of its linkage to infrastructure, railways, housing, coal, steel, power and refinery etc. He added, NCB carries out research programs jointly with industry in a time bound manner in areas like use of low grade lime stone, clinker formation at lower temperature, use of high Magnesia lime stone, use of coarser fly ash and increase in use of AFR. It also extends its work to the application of cement and skill development in cement plants. NCB works in close coordination with Bureau of Indian Standards and with educational institutes like IITs.
Mahendra Singhi, Chairman NCB, President; Cement Manufacturers' Association, Managing Director and CEO of Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Ltd.
It is more than just a seminar it is a conference on Innovation. Initially he praised Dr. B. N. Mohapatra, Director General NCB for doing his best and putting efforts to disseminate knowledge among cement fraternity. He said that seminar like this will make us future ready. Initially he highlighted the achievements of the industry and that of his peers on lowering carbon foot print and improving energy efficiency. While comparing the cement industry from other countries, he said we are one of the most energy efficient. He added that we are one of the largest contributor to the exchequer and second largest contributor of revenue to Indian Railways. He said we have converted our challenges into opportunities. Today close to 80 percent of entire production is blended cements. Many of our plants are water positive. Industry is in the forefront of converting waste into fuel. Last year we have used 3 million tonnes of waste as fuel for our kilns in just one month. We have over achieved our energy targets set for PAT cycle no.1. Five of our group members have been recognised as top most; worldwide in energy efficiency and low carbon foot print. Government of India recognises our efforts and the industry is showcased in various forums outside the country. During his speech Singhi narrated many examples from Ramayana and other mythology. He said that cement industry is setting an example in circular economy. He then brought to the attention of the audience to various challenges industry is facing. He said when the challenges before us are big, we need to intensify our efforts and determination so that we can overcome these challenges. Today the major challenges before us are: 1) reduction in use of fossil fuels 2) reduce lime stone consumption 3) reduce carbon di oxide emission 4) enhance the speed of construction. He said with NCB supporting the industry and with advent of new technologies we should be able to convert these challenges into opportunities. About the renewable power, he said the industry has potential of producing 50 GW of power. As a word of caution, he said disruption is coming and be ready for it. He added that with solar technology it is possible to get a temperature of 14000 C and carbon capture technology is going to be here. With use of technology; various carbon products can be produced. This will be game changer.
K.K.Maheshwari, Managing Director, UltraTech Cement Ltd. To start with Maheshwari complemented the work done by NCB and Dr. Mohapatra. He appreciated NCB's efforts in in partnering with industry, protecting the interest of consumers and advising the Government on new developments. He drew attention of the audience to the theme "Clean and Green is sustainable" He said we at UltraTech have been working on sustainability from the year 2005 much before sustainability became the buzz word. He said cement industry in India is proactive and much ahead of time. He said we have been working on four principles of sustainability.
1)environment 2) energy consumption 3) right to operate and right earn for every one and 4) taking care of surroundings, communities. While elaborating on each point he added that we have over a period of time reduced our CO2 emissions by 36 percent and specific energy consumption for per tonne of clinker has been brought down. On both fronts we are much better off compared to world average or even Europe. About AFR, we are at TSR of meagre 4 percent whereas Europe is at 41 percent. We need to work and improve this number. While today; we talk about circular economy which we are practising for long time. Singhiji has said that cement industry has processed 30 million tonnes of waste which is nothing but circular economy. He added that we burn more plastic than any other industry. Regarding environment footprint, he said setting up grinding station close to the market helps in reducing carbon emissions. Talking about renewable energy, Maheswari said, Waste Heat Recovery System should be classified as renewable energy. He further said that generally cement plants are set up in water starved areas. Many of our plants are already water positive. He further added that we should go beyond cement and look into the applications of cement. Cement gets converted into concrete or shapes which is a value addition. He said that we have a very small portion of cement going via ready mix which needs to grow. Our success lies in making such concrete products that have immediate acceptance from the user. About carbon capture technology he had a different thinking. He said the technology demands huge land bank for storage of captured carbon and we as a country are land starved. Therefore before going for such technology, we should think twice. It is not suitable for our country. About the energy cost, he said we already have high energy costs and therefore any reduction in energy consumption has always had a positive impact on the cost structure. He again emphasised that what is good for environment is good for economics.
Anil Agrawal, Jt. Secretary, DPIIT, Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Anil Agarwal initially attempted to put a total picture of Government initiatives before the audience. He talked about the projects like Bharat Mala, Sagar Mala, Expansion in Railway tracks, developments of industrial corridors and Development of new airports, Smart cities and housing for all. All these projects cover the length and breadth of the country. He further said that the construction industry of our country in the next year is going to be of 180 billion US dollars and the growth of construction industry in the next ten years is going to be of the order of 6 to 7 percent. In short he drew a very rosy picture on the construction front. He lauded the efforts of cement industry for energy efficiency and Swachata abhiyan and cement industry helped in processing about 7000 tonnes of plastic waste few months ago. He further asserted that when you visit fortune 500 companies listed in the year 2009 and in 2019, there is only one striking feature, those organisations have survived in 2019, that have continuously innovated. Therefore innovation is not a choice it is must for survival. There are five areas where cement industry needs to innovate. 1) use of energy 2) emissions 3) waste heat recovery system 4) newer sustainable products 5) overall efficiency in the entire production chain. He left the audience with a thought of total captive renewable energy for a cement plant? He raised a concern about the pricing practises followed by the cement industry.
Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra, Secretary, DPIIT, Ministry of Commerce and Industry. He released the book on seminar proceedings followed by the release of the CD in the soft form. In the inaugural address he appreciated the history of NCB for the last 30 years and also the bi annual event organised by NCB. He mentioned about the reduction in corporate tax and said that it should be a boost for the cement industry. He said the role of cement industry is going to be crucial for development of roads and other infrastructure in taking the Indian economy to 5 trillion mark by the year 2025. He appreciated the plan of cement industry to burn plastic to the tune of 12 million tonnes annually. He emphasised the use of alternate fuels and to take the numbers to higher levels, he suggested adopting best practises from West. He referred about the use of 67 million tonnes of municipal solid waste out of which 20 percent is combustible as a fuel and he proposed that he would look into the logistic problems faced by the industry. He was pleased with target set of 12 million tonnes plastic waste to be processed by the cement industry. Regarding renewable energy, he said he hopes cement industry would extend support to Government's ambitious target of generating 400 Giga watts of power. He said it is unfortunate that Green tribunal has put a ban on the construction activity in NCR due to pollution problems. He suggested that to find out scientific solutions to such problems. In bound and out bound logistics is an important area where there is scope for lowering the carbon foot print. He said NCB should be proactive in solving the problems of industry. Dr. S.K.Chaturvedi, Organising Secretary gave vote of thanks.
Hon'ble Minister of Commerce and Industry, Piyush Goyal at NCB seminar on 3rd December 2019
By the end of first day proceedings of the seminar, the Hon'ble Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal participated in the event. He released a compendium "The Cement Industry -India 2019." Later on there was a prize distribution to the winners of Energy Efficiency, Environmental and quality excellence. He lauded the cement industry for achieving the world class standards, contributing in nation building and making India proud. He brought to the attention that 40 years back China was behind us but today they have overtaken us and have become number 1 in capacity building and per capita consumption. He then touched upon the social aspects of the day, 3rd December; which happens to be an international day for persons with disabilities. He appealed to the audience to play a role to provide work opportunities to Divyangs. He said considering the number of employment opportunities, collectively we can work together to make their life better and the other sectors of industry can follow the model set by cement industry. He suggested of creating a separate website for the cause. Later on talking about the present time, he said every industry goes through a cycle, when we can sit back; look at the pricing pattern, cost inputs, productivity levels and think of eliminating waste. Every 4 to 5 years; we pass through this phase. The time right now can be used for such exercise. He was concerned about the pollution caused in the entire business chain of cement usage from transport to construction. He suggested industry as whole should collectively work for reducing dust emissions. He further said sustainability is not always at cost but can be profitable also. He proposed to improve the quality of cement in such a way so that less cement is required for the same application and though there may be an increase of cost, it can be offset by saving earned in other areas like packing and transportation. He then emphasised on the use of water and in the years to come water is going to become scares so avoid wasting water. He narrated an example of Railways, about how they managed to save water while washing passenger coaches from 15000 litres per coach to just 300 litres by resorting to mechanical washing from manual cleaning. While talking about the image of the industry, he was not happy, he said perception outside is not good and you need to improve your image and for that you will have to come forward and do something. Outsiders will not help you. He further suggested to the industry to extend insurance cover or a pension scheme to all the direct and indirect employees especially from unorganised sector like loaders, transporters, dealer staff etc. involved in the eco system around you so as to create goodwill about the industry. It will not only build an image of the industry but also will have huge contribution to the nation and its people. Regarding Railways he said his ministry is coming out with a revised scheme of own your wagons for industry which will be more liberal and open so as to bring down the logistic cost. Regarding new developments, he opined that industry must work to bring down the construction time by bringing in new products otherwise you may lose out to steel companies, because steel can replace concrete structures. At the end he said that cement industry is doing yeomen contribution to the nation building and to the people of India.