CEMENT manufacturer Holcim Philippines, Inc. said it will be investing over P2 billion on sustainability initiatives at its four plants.

Horia Adrian, president and chief executive officer of Holcim, said that the company’s investments for the next three years will focus on sustainability, innovation, and efficiency.

“With doing this, we are going to improve the output of our plants,” Mr. Adrian said in a briefing on Monday.

“We have in the pipeline investments for Geocycle in the amount of 15-20 million Swiss francs, or P1 billion more or less,” he added.

Holcim Chief Sustainability Officer Samuel Manlosa, Jr. said that the investment in its waste management arm, Geocycle, will help create the capacity for local government units (LGUs) to sort and segregate solid waste.

“There is also a side where, if we want to take in more volume, we need to increase our capacity to shred and prepare the materials,” Mr. Manlosa said.

“And then, our cement plants, even as sophisticated and technologically advanced as they are, were constructed 20 years ago when norms were different, so we had to make changes in the process to make sure that the plants were able to accept more,” he added.

Meanwhile, Mr. Adrian said that another P500 million to P1 billion will be invested in the plants’ shift to renewable energy (RE) and in the electrification of its vehicle fleet.

“We are purchasing electricity right now, but we have plans to put in place solar (facilities) and we are looking at the possibility of using electricity generated from biowaste here,” he said.

 “By the end of the year, some of them should be ready,” he added.

 Mr. Manlosa said that the investments will be evenly distributed to the four plants in the next three years.

“The reason why it is paced in three years is because some plants will get it earlier than others because, of course, you have to pace spending,” he said.

“The plants in Luzon — Bulacan and La Union — are in the perfect place for investments; for the plants in Davao and Lugait, Misamis Oriental, there has to be some enabling factor at the LGU-level to be able to make those investments, which is why we are delaying them a year later,” he added. 

He said that the Bulacan and La Union plants are ready to start investment activity this year, while the plants in Davao and Lugait will be ready next year for completion a year later. — Justine Irish D. Tabile