World Habitat Day Tests Synergies

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Newly formed LafargeHolcim Ltd., Zurich, honored 2015 World Habitat Day last month outlining its approach to affordable housing, especially in developing countries where it has cement, aggregate, concrete and building materials operations. With world population on a steadily upward trajectory, company officials note, an adequate stock of dwellings has become one of the biggest 21st century challenges. Key figures from World Habitat Day sponsors tell the story: 4 billion people in the world do not have access to decent housing; 800 million people live in slums; and, conditions in India alone indicate a need for 150 million-plus sanitation units.

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LafargeHolcim signs call for Paris Climate Agreement

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The world’s top integrated cement, aggregate and concrete producer, Zurich-based LafargeHolcim Ltd., has joined peers in minerals, metals and hydrocarbons—Alcoa, BHP Billiton, BP, Rio Tinto and Shell—as signatories to “In Support of a Paris Climate Agreement,” a statement the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) prepared ahead of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in December.

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Morrish tapped to head Lehigh Hanson, join realigned HeidelbergCement board

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Jon Morrish has transitioned to Lehigh Hanson Inc. president and chief executive officer from his post as South Region president. He succeeds the retiring Daniel Harrington, who during five years at the helm is credited with managing the business through one of the worst economic downturns in recent history, capitalizing on market recovery, and positioning the company for future growth.

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Highway funding, training programs top priorities for ARTBA Chairman Zachry

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Upon his election as 2015-16 American Road & Transportation Builders Association chairman, David Zachry told members the group will remain laser-focused on ensuring a long-term Highway Trust Fund fix and Congressional approval of a multi-year bill boosting federal surface transportation investment; advocate for increased federal investment in airport construction; and, build “Transportation Makes America Work” lobbying and advocacy communications program participation.

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Weighted Inspection Enforcement Units

A new enforcement weighting system assigns greater value to complex inspections that require more Occupational Safety & Health Administration resources and, agency officials note, will allow strategic planning and measurement of inspections while ensuring all workers are equally protected, regardless of the industry they work in. Effective October, the system assigns “Enforcement Units” to each inspection. Routine inspections count as one unit; those requiring greater resources and involving such factors as musculoskeletal disorders, chemical exposures and process safety management violations, count as up to nine units. Values are based on historical data and will be monitored and adjusted as necessary.

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Fatal workplace injury rate rises slightly in new BLS Census

A preliminary total of 4,679 fatal work injuries recorded in the U.S. during 2014 marks a 2 percent increase over prior year figures, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries. Preliminary 2014 figures show a fatal work injury rate at 3.3 per 100,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers, matching the 2013 level.

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