Alamo Cement Co., located in north San Antonio, announced March 2 the completion of a 45-acre solar-panel field that company officials said advance their pledge to reduce carbon emissions and align themselves with the cement industry's goal of reaching carbon neutrality.
Alamo Cement leaders said their new solar-powered system, the total size of 35 football fields, is estimated to generate up to 15% of their plant's yearly energy consumption while reducing emissions and electricity costs.
Massimo Toso, president and CEO of Alamo Cement and president and CEO of Buzzi Unicem USA Inc., said in a statement that Alamo Cement is committed to furthering the cement industry's goal of decarbonizing and that the solar-power project is a step in the right direction.
“We continue to look for more opportunities to enhance sustainability in our operations, and plan to build on our experience from this San Antonio project and explore implementing additional renewable power systems within our group,” he said.
According to Alamo Cement, full use of this renewable energy system is estimated to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 8,000 tons yearly. As energy demands rise, this on-site power system also has the benefit of reducing dependence on the local power grid thus alleviating stress on the electrical grid serving the San Antonio region, company officials said.
William Kovacs, director of project engineering and construction management, said this initiative is an example of the type of collaboration necessary to continue to unlock and apply new energy sources for cement producers.
“It was a collective effort that brought together our corporate team, [utility] CPS Energy and regional engineering firms and contractors,” Kovacs said in a statement.
Alamo Cement said it has made a large investment in this renewable power project, which has the capacity to generate up to 17,800 megawatt-hours annually.
It is the largest customer-owned solar power project in the CPS Energy service area, which includes Bexar County and portions of its seven surrounding counties.
"Projects like this are a testament to the work CPS Energy has done and continues to do in collaborating with those who share a common goal of moving toward a sustainable future for our city and are committed to reducing the local demand for energy,” said Jonathan Tijerina, CPS Energy’s vice president of enterprise risk and development, in a statement.