This is a time for optimism

It was not only free trade and open markets that determined the catalogue of topics at this year‘s World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos – climate protection has become a central focus.

On behalf of the global climate movement, Greta Thunberg is calling on companies, organizations and governments to stop all investment in fossil fuels. Scientists are calling on all politicians and business leaders to put scientific facts about climate change at the centre of their actions. Klaus Schwab, founder of the World Economic Forum (WEF), is also calling on corporations to publicly set themselves the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050 or earlier. The Global Risk Report, in which the WEF describes the greatest threats to the world, states that “climate-related issues dominated all of the top-five long-term risks in terms of likelihood”.

Despite all the urgency, there is no place for a doomsday mood. Action is important. The cement industry, as a major CO2 emitter, has been working for years to reduce its CO2 emissions, investing in new technologies and using substitute raw materials and substitute fuels. At the end of 2019, the four European cement producers Buzzi Unicem/Dyckerhoff, HeidelbergCement AG, Schwenk Zement KG and Vicat founded the joint research corporation CI4C – Cement Innovation for Climate. Aim of the corporation is to realize the joint research project catch4climate, which will investigate the practical applicability of Oxyfuel Carbon Capture technology in the cement production process (page 11).

In this issue, our raw materials and alternative fuel edition, we report on the 2019 Lechtenberg Symposium with a focus on alternative fuels, at which current projects and new technologies for alternative fuels were discussed (page 18). In our cover story (page 28), Vecoplan reports about supplying a balanced, complete handling line with coordinated components to Votorantim Cimentos in Hasanoğlan/Turkey. At its plant, the Votorantim Group uses a mix of refuse-derived fuel (RDF) and tyre-derived fuel (TDF). A case study from Cilacap, Indonesia, shows that RDF production can be done successfully with all involved parties and the environment benefiting from this implementation (page 32).

Last but not least, in this issue we are introducing a column by Matthias Mersmann (page 63), a recognized professional expert and executive in the cement and mining industry. With his 25 years of experience in international industrial engineering, he will address current issues in the cement industry. Mersmann was Vice-President Technology and R&D at KHD Humboldt Wedag from 1995 to 2008. In 2009, he founded aixergee GmbH, and up until 2020 as General Manager of this company, he provided technical advice to the international cement industry. From 2011 to 2018, he was active at Loesche GmbH as Technical Director and General Manager. Now, Matthias Mersmann takes responsibility for KHD International AG as CTO – Member of the Board. We are looking forward to his future comments, suggestions and also some controversial issues. We should like to invite you as a reader of ZKG Cement Lime Gypsum to send us your opinion.

I wish you interesting reading.

Anett Hümmer


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