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As citizens of the earth, we need to get off of fossil fuels," says Steven Price of WWF. "Exploring other alternatives while we perfect our ideal solution is one way we can do that."

Exploring the New Frontier of Renewable Energy Sources

For centuries, the world has been fuelled by traditional energy sources such as wood, coal, and oil. But in recent decades, governments, scientists, environmental organizations and industry have started to explore new energy sources for the future. As the world’s largest cement manufacturing company, and a fuel consumer, Lafarge is committed to being a part of this exploration.The black sedimentary rock known as coal has a long history as a fuel for homes and industry. Marco Polo witnessed the use of the burning black rocks by Chinese peasants during his epic travels to the country in the 13th century. But it was declining sources of wood in Britain that ushered in the widespread use of coal and assured its place as the principal energy source during the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century.Centuries later, the burning of this fossil fuel is recognized as a leading contributor to carbon dioxide emissions into the earth’s atmosphere. Still, coal is so widely available and affordable that it remains a significant energy source today. The largest reserves are in the United States and currently over 100,000 metric tonnes of coal and petcoke from the US are shipped each year to our Bath Plant to manufacture our cement products. Although emission control technologies are in place to make coal a safe, affordable fuel, the Cement 2020 goal is to replace this imported fuel with cleaner, local, and renewable fuels.In this issue, we provide more information about our Cement2020 project, with Queen’s University and WWF-Canada, to find low carbon fuel sources suitable forour operations here and our over 100 plants worldwide. The project embraces a range of integrated research initiatives undertakenby a multi-disciplinary team to explore practical, sustainable recommendations for use by the worldwide cement industry. One of the early, tangible goals is to replace 30% of the fossil fuels we use with local, low carbon fuels at our Bath plant by 2020.

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