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Stricter emissions regulations considered for China’s cement industry

World Cement,

It has been reported that China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection is considering implementing stricter nitrogen oxide emissions regulations for the cement industry. At present, the permitted level of nitrogen oxide emissions by cement producers stands at 800 mg/m3, with China expressing the intention of decreasing emissions by 10% by 2015. Nitrogen oxide emissions can cause acid rain and photochemical smog.

According to reports in local newspapers, Kong Xiangzhong, President of the China Cement Association, has indicated that the nitrogen oxide allowance could be reduced to 400 mg/m3. Kong was cited as admitting that stricter rules could cause pressure on the cement industry, with cement manufacturing costs potentially increasing by 15 – 20 yuan/t. It is thought that a change in regulations could cut the industry’s profits by a third and that less competitive firms could be squeezed out of the market. The news has already had an impact upon cement stocks in the region.

Although the number of cement producers in the country has fallen from 5000 to 3000 over the last five years, China is still the world’s largest cement producer. In 2011, China’s cement production increased by 16.1% to 2.06 billion t.

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