Mudiaga Affe, Calabar
Lafarge Africa Plc says it is intensifying efforts to adopt biomass as an alternative source of energy generation in order to boost efficiency.
The Legal Director, Lafarge Africa Plc, Mrs. Edith Onwuchekwa, who stated this in Calabar, the Cross River State capital, during the tour of its cement plant in Mfamosing by shareholders and investors, said one of the challenges of the cement giant was bad road networks.
Biomass, as an energy source, can either be used directly via combustion to produce heat, or indirectly after converting it to various forms of biofuel.
Onwuchekwa said that the company had commenced the process of sourcing for biomass such as agricultural waste products, among others, adding that the company was looking at the next three to five years to concretise the move.
She assured the investors that the Mfamosing plant was producing at five million metric tons of cement capacity, following the completion of the new second line in 2016.
She said, “We have issues with energy as most times we experience gas shortage due to problems in the Niger Delta. That is why we are looking at other ways to tackle energy problem. We are looking at the biomass alternative fuel that will boost our energy and help us become efficient in that area and also reduce cost.
“We are looking for alternatives that are not fossil fuel. We have started the process of sourcing for biomass by bringing in agric waste. This is where we are going in the next three to five years.”
Speaking on the road challenges, Onwuchekwa said, “We have a lot of challenges. Look at the roads, not in good shapes; we do a lot of works on our evacuation roads. We cannot just produce these products and abandon the cement; they must get to the market.”
Also speaking, the Plant Manager, Mr. Peter Robson, Lafarge Africa, said the Mfamosing cement was generating 100 per cent of its electricity through gas.
In his presentation to the shareholders, the Head, Communications and State Relations, East, Lafarge, Mr. Inyang Bassey, said the company was enjoying the good support of the 10 host communities due sustainability plan.
He said that the sustainability plan, also known as ‘2030 Plan-Building for Tomorrow’, focused on enhancing the quality of life for communities in its areas of operation.