Hindalco becomes the world's 1st company to achieve 100 per cent red mud utilisation
A major step in reducing cement industry's dependence on mined material; replaces 3 per cent of the clinker raw mix
Mumbai: Hindalco Industries Ltd., a global leader in Aluminium and Copper, has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with UltraTech Cement Ltd., India's largest manufacturer of cement and concrete, to deliver 1.2 million metric tonnes of red mud (also known as bauxite residue) annually to UltraTech's 14 plants located across seven states.
Hindalco is the world's first company to achieve 100 per cent red mud utilisation across three of its refineries.
Red mud generated in the alumina manufacturing process is rich in iron oxides, along with alumina, silica and alkali. The cement industry has developed the capability to process red mud as a replacement for mined minerals such as laterite and lithomarge in its process.
Hindalco is supplying red mud to UltraTech Cement plants where it has been proved to be an effective substitute for mined materials, successfully replacing up to 3 per cent of clinker raw mix volume. Use of red mud reduces the cement industry's dependence on natural resources and promotes a circular economy.
Hindalco's alumina refineries are currently supplying 250,000 metric tonnes of bauxite residue to cement companies every month, making Hindalco the world's first company to have enabled such large scale commercial application of bauxite residue.
In the current year, Hindalco aims to achieve 2.5 million metric tonnes of bauxite residue utilisation, which will be another global milestone.
Mr. Satish Pai, Managing Director, Hindalco, said, 'Hindalco has been working with cement companies to develop high-grade inputs for the construction industry. Hindalco has built a strong customer base and supplies red mud to over 40 cement plants every month. We have achieved 100 per cent red mud utilisation at three of our refineries and our vision is to achieve zero-waste alumina production across our operations. Hindalco's actions underscore our commitment to embracing solutions that have the potential to deliver long-term sustainability impact and transform the future.'
Globally, 160 million metric tonnes of red mud is produced annually and stored in large tracts of land which is a serious industry challenge. To find a sustainable solution, Hindalco has invested in infrastructure and collaborated with cement companies, with UltraTech Cement being a key partner.
Mr. K.C. Jhanwar, Managing Director, UltraTech Cement,said, 'UltraTech has been among the early adopters in India on the use of alternative raw materials and fuels in manufacturing and invested to build storage, handling and processing facilities. Use of waste like red mud as an alternative raw material for manufacturing cement requires infrastructure and process modification to ensure a win-win for both business and the environment.'
Last year, UltraTech consumed about 15.73 million metric tonnes of industrial waste as alternate raw material and about 300,000 metric tonnes as alternative fuel in its kilns.
Mr. Jhanwar added, 'With an annual supply of 1.2 million metric tonnes of red mud from Hindalco, we expect to conserve more than 1 million metric tonnes of mined natural resources like laterite in our manufacturing process. Enhancing our contribution to the circular economy by strategically increasing the use of waste as raw material and fuel in the cement manufacturing process, is in line with our aim to achieve our long-term sustainability goals.'
The MoU represents a significant sustainability initiative for both Hindalco and UltraTech. Waste of one industry being used as an input material in another is more than an example of a circular economy, it exemplifies Hindalco's sustainability-first approach to business.
About Hindalco Industries Limited
Hindalco Industries Limited is the metals flagship company of the Aditya Birla Group. A $16.7 billion metals powerhouse, Hindalco is the world's largest aluminium rolling and recycling company, and a major player in copper. It is also one of Asia's largest producers of primary aluminium. Its wholly owned subsidiary Novelis Inc. is the world's largest producer of aluminium beverage can stock and the largest recycler of used beverage cans (UBCs).
In April 2020, Hindalco-Novelis acquired US-based rolled products major Aleris Corporation, cementing its position as the world's leading aluminium value-added products player. Hindalco's global footprint today spans 47 manufacturing units across 10 countries.
Guided by its purpose of building a greener, stronger, smarter world, Hindalco has innovated a number of lightweight aluminium products that help reduce fossil fuel use and GHG emissions.
Hindalco's sustainability initiatives were recognised by its inclusion in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) 2019 in the Emerging Markets category. Its DJSI score places Hindalco among the world's top three aluminium companies.
About UltraTech Cement Limited
UltraTech Cement Limited is the largest manufacturer of grey cement, ready mix concrete (RMC) and white cement in India. It is also one of the leading cement producers globally, and the only cement company globally (outside of China) to have more than 100 million tonne capacity in one country. UltraTech's vision is to be 'The Leader' in Building Solutions.
It has a consolidated capacity of 116.75 Million Tonnes Per Annum (MTPA)*of grey cement. It operates 23 integrated units, 26 grinding units, seven bulk terminals and one clinkerisation plant for grey cement, one integrated white cement unit, two wall care putty plants and over 100 RMC plants. UltraTech has a dealer and retailer network of over 80,000 partners across the country, with a market reach of more than 80 per cent Indian cities and towns. Its operations span across India, UAE, Bahrain, and Sri Lanka. UltraTech is a founding member of the Global Cement & Concrete Association.
*(Including 2 MTPA capacity which is under commissioning)