St Marys Cement’s Charlevoix, Mich., plant received the Land Stewardship Award from the Portland Cement Association (PCA) and Cement Americas as part of the 2014 Cement Industry Energy and Environment Awards.
Several St. Marys outreach initiatives in 2013 involved partnerships with the community on biodiversity conservation efforts. These included US-31 Corridor Enhancement Project, and the plant’s fourth eagle release. Other community related efforts include the Phragmites Removal Project and the Rails to Trails Project.
In 2013, St Marys Cement, a subsidiary of Votorantim Cimentos, was granted a permit by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality which allowed the plant to discontinue the use of Lake Michigan water for process noncontract cooling and consumptive needs, and instead use the plants own quarry dewatering water for these uses. The plant was using more than half a billion gallons of water from Lake Michigan annually.
The Land Stewardship category recognizes efforts to protect and enhance the surrounding land. The Charlevoix plant was also a runner up in the Environmental Performance category, which honors facilities that take steps beyond those contained in environmental laws, regulations, permits and requirements to minimize their impact on the environment.
The Energy & Environmental Awards honor individual cement facilities that exemplify the spirit of continuous environmental improvement and support this spirit with action. These plants go beyond government regulations and local laws to ensure that their processes contribute to making their communities better places to live and work. Five categories are recognized: outreach, environmental performance, land stewardship, innovation and energy efficiency. Additionally, PCA presents a special honor to a plant demonstrating excellence in multiple categories.