Sustainable development audit: Improved Safety, Lower Carbon

In its 2010 Sustainable Development Report, covering global concrete, cement and aggregate production, Cemex, S.A.B. de C.V., cites significant progress in key performance indicators relating to workplace safety, environment and climate change, biodiversity and wilderness preservation, and contribution to local communities.

“We intensified our commitment to integrating sustainability into all aspects of our worldwide business,” noted Cemex Chairman Lorenzo Zambrano upon the report’s early-April release. “As the largest concrete producer in the world, we have both a responsibility and a great opportunity to help lead the transition to a sustainable construction industry, and to contribute to improving the quality of life around our communities.”

In 2010, the company achieved a 19 percent reduction in its employee lost-time incident rate to 2.6 incidents per million hours worked. This year will see implementation of the Cemex Health and Safety Management System, plus worldwide Legacy training program roll out. Both measures are aimed at an ultimate goal of zero incidents across the enterprise.

Cemex also reports research and development work to build on concrete as the market’s most inherently sustainable building material. Led by a Global Center for Technology and Innovation in Switzerland, Cemex technology facilities around the world are creating a range of innovative concrete products to meet the construction industry’s growing demand for high-performance, low-carbon building solutions.

In 2010, the company introduced a carbon footprint tool—the first of its kind in the heavy building materials industry—that measures greenhouse gas emissions of ready mixed, cement and aggregates production and delivery. It has been implemented in all operating cement plants and is now being extended to concrete and aggregate plants worldwide. Tool data will yield carbon content information to begin accompanying certain Cemex products this year.

Also last year, Cemex achieved a 20.5 percent reduction of carbon dioxide net emissions per ton of cement produced relative to its 1990 baseline, allowing the avoidance of yearly emissions equivalent to that of 1.2 million vehicles. On the strength of that performance, the company confirms a 25 percent reduction target by 2015. The Cemex 2010 Sustainable Development Report achieved a Global Reporting Initiative/G3 Guidelines application level of A+ for the third consecutive year; it is available at