Company works to make cement more environmentally friendlyFrom an ecological standpoint, cement is a terrible material to work with. It's expensive and the plants that manufacture it are some of the worst carbon dioxide producers in the world, in addition to releasing massive amounts of the toxic chemical mercury. But now, one company is working to make cement "greener."

Sriya Green Materials, an Atlanta-based company, is planning to construct a $200-million facility that would be capable of producing "green" cement that's less expensive and better for the environment.

Using current manufacturing techniques, "each ton of cement emits about 1,763 pounds of CO2 during manufacture," Sriya CEO Srinivas Kilambi told the Atlanta Business Chronicle. That figure, which considers both the carbon released from the limestone dug up to create the cement and the emissions resulting from the heating process of manufacturing it, represents close to a 1:1 ratio.

Sriya's process helps eliminate some of these carbon emissions by working at much lower temperatures and producing cement in smaller batches. Thus far, the company's cement process has been proven laboratory testing, although there are still some concerns about large-scale production. Sriya plans to build a "pilot plant" next year to test the technology on a commercial scale.

Cement, which is a mixture of limestone and clay ground into power and mixed with water, is one of the most commonly used materials in industrial construction.
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