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Turning Waste into Treasure

A Green Solution to the Industrial Bottleneck of "Hezhou White Marble"

  • Li Meiping's afternoon shift started with a phone call. "Hello, this is XXX factory. I want to reserve a pulp pumping. Please take down my information." "Ok, I'll make a reservation for you, please wait for our phone call". After hanging up the phone, she opened her reservation notebook and wrote down the information.

    Li Meiping rose her head and saw the Huang brothers driving a pulp van out of the company. They were going to a factory for pulp pumping. Upon arriving at the factory, the Huang brothers parked their van near the waste pulp pool. With the sound of machines cutting marble, they connected the van with the water pump and began to pump pulp. The surface of the pool became lower and lower and the pulp became so sticky that a worker began to stir the pulp to make it easier to be pumped.

    A pulp van has a maximum load of 50t. The Huang brothers drove the van all the way to the final destination---Hezhou Power Plant of CR Power, where they plugged the van to an unloading machine independently developed by the power plant. The milk-like waste pulp flew out from the van to a storage tank after being filtered. The process took about an hour. Then the Huang brothers drove to the next factory for pulp pumping again.

    Working in a third-party marble waste pulp transportation company, Li Meiping makes and answers dozens of phone calls every day, in which at least ten are photo calls making reservations for pulp pumping. She has 5 pulp vans to dispatch, each being operated by two workers, one is responsible for driving while the other is responsible for pumping.

    It is the work of Hezhou Power Plant to treat the pulp. after going through technical treatment, the filtered waste pulp could fully replace the limestone powder used in flue gas desulfurization (FGD). Moreover, gypsum, the byproduct of the wet FGD process, could be transported to the nearly CR Cement for recycled use. The process turns marble waste pulp into treasure.

    36-year-old Li Meiping was born and raised in the mining area of Xiwan, Pinggui District, Hezhou city. As a witness of the drastic changes of the local environment, she said, "the recycled use of the waste pulp indeed saved local environment. Now, the factories don't discharge pulp into the river anymore and the water becomes so clean"

    "Lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets", this is especially true for Hezhou. "lush mountains, blue sky and lucid water, Hezhou, with a history of more than 1000 years, stands the vicissitudes of time", this paragraph from an article describes the beautiful scenery and rich culture of Hezhou. Besides being known as the city of longevity, Hezhou also has the largest reserve of high quality calcium carbonate "Hezhou White" in South China, with a long-term prospected reserve of 2.6 billion cubic meter. Rich resource reserves led to uncontrolled expansion of the mining industry. In a few years, as many as 400 to 500 marble processing factories were established, producing large amount of white waste pulp every year. In the past, some small factories without the capability to treat the waste pulp directly discharged it into the nearly river, turning the water into milky white, creating challenge to local environmental protection efforts.

    As the economic pillar of Hezhou, the calcium carbonate industry contributes more than RMB 100 billion to the local GDP. How protect the lucid waters and lush mountains while maintaining steady economic growth is a challenge for the government, businesses and the people.

    A proposal at the 2016 Party Building Work Conference of Hezhou Power Plant changed everything. During the brainstorming session, a proposal impressed everyone. "The limestone powder we purchased needs to be stirred into pulp before being sprayed into the desulfurization tower. Is it possible for us to replace the limestone powder with the waste pulp produced by marble cutting?". The solution could not only reduce operational cost, but also promote environmental protection. If being implemented successfully, it could achieve the effect of hitting two birds with one stone.

    Hezhou Power Plant soon established a "marble waste pulp recycling project" team to start the R&D work. Problems popped up one after another, but the team led by Lv Xinfeng, an engineer at the power generation department, was always able to find solutions. For example, it took 3 hours for the first pulp van to unload for a lack of proper facilities, which is far from meeting the demand of production. Feeling frustrated, the team didn't give up until the successful development of the waste pulp unloading machine. Now the team has upgraded the technology into the fourth generation and has applied for patents.

    The 13th Five-Year Plan pointed out that with accelerated industrialization and urbanization and the continuous upgrade of the structure of consumption, sustainable development is becoming increasingly imperative. Against such background, all sectors of the economy need to make greater efforts to promote energy conservation and emission reduction. We shouldn’t sacrifice long-term environmental benefits for short-term business profit, neither should we pursue business expansion at the expense of depriving the next generation of the right of living in a good environment or increasing business profit by squeezing spending on environmental protection. CR Cement Binyang Domestic Waste Treatment and Disposal Project is an effective solution offered by CR in response to the demand of the country.

    After conducting 14 experiments in 6 months, Hezhou Power Plant successfully replaced limestone powder with marble waste pulp in wet FGD in June 2016. 30,000t of waste pulp was used in the latter half of 2016 alone. The project also convinced the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to increase the minimum load of Hezhou Power Plant from 320MW to 500MW, making it easier for the power plant to realize its annual production goal. In 2017, Hezhou Power Plant treated 100,000t of waste pulp, reduced production cost by RMB 10 million and increased revenue by RMB 70 million.

    There is nothing called waste in the world, but only resources that have not been properly used. As the first Chinese thermal power plant using marble waste pulp in wet FGD, Hezhou Power Plant effectively controlled water pollution and solved the environmental bottleneck of the calcium carbonate industry. With the help of the project, not only businesses, the whole society is engaged in the development of the circular economy. As a replicable solution, the project not only contributed to the harmonious development of economy and environment in the local area, but also provides best practice for similar cases.

    said Chen Yiming, Deputy Mayer of Hezhou in charge of industrial development

    "We are seeking for cooperation with other businesses and research institutions to find more solutions.The marble waste pulp recycling project provides a new solution to pollution prevention and control in Hezhou. It allowed us to protect the environment while promoting the development of the industry through ‘controlling discharge while seeking for alternative use of the waste'. Hezhou Power Plant is not only a contributor to GDP, but also a guard to the local environment."

    To protect the ecological environment, CR Group has been doing everything it could to "turn waste into valuable assets". CR Cement also took the lead to promote technological research and project implementation of the integrated treatment of residential waste, urban sludge and industrial hazardous waste, providing a new path for the cement industry to safeguard the lucid waters and lush mountains of our motherland.

    Protecting the lucid waters and lush mountains is protecting our own home. Passing down the lucid waters, blue sky and lush mountains to future generations is the greatest commitment of CR Group to mother nature.

  • Tremendous Responsibility Behind a Simple Story

    CR Power turned waste into treasure, reshaped business model and addressed the challenge of pollution control through the establishment of a new industrial chain linking calcium carbonate companies, CR Power and CR Cement, fostering a value chain benefiting multiple parties in upper and lower stream industries and turning its own capabilities into the motivation to promote industrial development and carry out responsibilities to make lucid waters and lush mountains invaluable assets. For a long time, with the mission of realizing sustainable corporate development, CR has been taking concrete actions to carry out its environmental responsibilities. Major energy-consuming companies such as CR Power and CR Cement improved the efficiency of resource utilization and reduced pollutant discharge through strengthening environmental protection and energy conservation and emission reduction management and turned environmental challenges into development opportunities through promoting solid waste coordinated treatment projects and other new technologies and new techniques for energy conservation and environmental protection. By transforming technological and management strengths into economic and social benefits, they not only nurtured new growth magnets, but also significantly improve competitiveness.

  • Our Philosophy

    In CR, work is not only for self-improvement, but also to make a better living environment for more people. We insist on "not to pursue short-term benefits of the enterprise at the cost of long-term benefits of the environment, not to seek scale expansion of the enterprise at the cost of survival conditions of the offspring", practice green responsibility and achieve sustainable development of the enterprise. We are committed to strengthening environmental protection, energy conservation and emission reduction, improving resource utilization efficiency, reducing pollutant emissions, fulfilling social responsibilities, enhancing green competitiveness and promoting the harmonious development of enterprises and nature.

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