Better known as Pennsuco, the Titan Florida cement plant in Medley is the first operation of its kind to attain the highest level of certification under the Total Resource Use and Efficiency (TRUE) rating system for zero waste. Administered by the U.S. Green Building Council-aligned Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI), TRUE helps facilities around the world define, pursue and achieve zero waste goals while becoming more resource efficient.
“Titan Florida recognizes that by pursuing zero waste they are helping build a sustainable future for all,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, president and CEO of USGBC and GBCI. “Waste impacts all facets of a business. Changing the way we use resources delivers public health benefits, reduces our environmental impact and advances a greener economy.”
Facilities achieve TRUE certification by meeting program requirements and accruing credits. Each site is then audited and must submit annual diversion data that demonstrates continuous compliance to achieve certification at four possible levels: Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum.
Pennsuco attained the latter certification by accruing additional credits for implementing programs such as repurposing used office supplies and materials; grass recycling/mulching; composting; and Xeriscaping, the process of landscaping that reduces or eliminates the need for supplemental water from irrigation.
As part of the credit for waste reporting, Pennsuco became an active participant in the U.S. EPA Waste Wise Program, where diversion data is submitted to the EPA annually and goals are set for the following year. All told, the operation diverted approximately 97% of its waste from the landfill and incineration last year.
“It’s not just about receiving an award; being zero waste is about considering how we can minimize our impacts so future generations have the opportunity to live in a sustainable environment,” said Allyson Tombesi, environmental engineer at Titan Florida, who led the zero-waste recertification. “The program was created with a goal to encourage our employees to lead a zero-waste lifestyle at both the plant and at home. Through program participation, we hope to inspire our employees, and our industry to take action that benefits the future of our planet.”