Plant emissions, recycling
Bocchicchio calls the plant's emissions and central dust collection system “state of the art.” The cement bin and fly ash collector is a combined bin that is tied to a central collector. Clear Brook is a dry-batch plant, so a specially designed shroud goes over the truck when it is being loaded.
For tanker-truck unloading, all pipes are equipped with overfill protection. If a silo has too much material in it, the feed is automatically cut off to prevent spill-age. The driver and plant operator are notified with a light and audio alarm. All dust that is collected is recycled back up into the bin and pumped back up into the fly ash silo bin and reused.
Concrete that is returned to the plant either is crushed into 21A base material for use as a road bed material or offered to the public as it becomes available. “If the truck comes back with two or three yards, we contact local farmers and landowners and ask if they would be willing to take the material and do something with it,” says Progar. Many times farmers use the material for paving their barns.
“We try to minimize what comes back to the plant because it's just another thing we have to deal with,” Bocchicchio adds. “If we didn't bring anything back to our plant, that would be ideal. But it doesn't happen.”
With the exception of natural sand, the plant's aggregates are all sourced from within 15 miles. “We are fortunate,” says Progar. “Our main supplier for stone is right down the end of our haul road. Travel time for us to receive course aggregate is very minimal.”
Clear Brook's standard mixes use 15 percent to 20 percent fly ash, depending on temperature and job specifications.Deliveries
The Clear Brook plant's ready-mix trucks run on biodiesel fuel, which burns slightly cleaner than all-natural diesel. “It costs us a little bit more than regular diesel, but we're committed to being environmentally responsible,” says Progar.
The plant has also instituted a new idling policy for drivers. When a truck arrives at the plant from a jobsite and there is no leftover concrete in the drum, the driver must turn off the vehicle within five minutes. “It helps the environment and there's fuel savings for not having the truck sit idle for two or three hours a day,” says Progar.
This is the program's first year and fuel savings has totaled 8 percent so far. Progar receives a daily report that monitors each truck's idle time. If he sees excessive idling, he calls the plant supervisors to learn why. “Overall, there was pretty good buy-in,” Progar says. Even on days when temperatures reached 95 degrees F, drivers were turning off their trucks, which meant they were also turning off the air conditioning.
Being environmentally responsible takes an effort. Bocchicchio filled out more than 200 pages of NRMCA's Sustainability Certification paperwork. “It can be rather complex,” he says, but then adds, “Titan is committed to being an environmentally responsible out-fit, and building sustainable processes throughout our business.”