Industry Trends Report

Concrete JSI: Industry Trends Report XV

EPA sets greenhouse gas emissions standard for cars and climate bill is expected in the coming weeks

April 15, 2010

The editors of the Industry Trends Report will endeavor to keep JSI members informed of legal, regulatory and sustainability trends that may have an indirect or direct impact on the concrete industry. Please direct your comments regarding the articles or feedback about the Industry Trends Report to

Public Action

New Codes to Ensure New York Buildings Will Be Among Nationwide Leaders in Energy Efficiency
Source: readMedia.  April 2, 2010.

The State of New York approved new energy efficiency building codes which will take effect at the end of the year. As part of the agreement to receive stimulus funding from the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) for energy related programs, states agreed to adopt the International Energy Conservation Code and the American Society of Heating Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers standards, New York’s new codes comply with the ARRA requirement.   
Link to full story.


Eye on the environment: New state rules to mandate, certify green construction
Source:, Wally Geer.  April 3, 2010

California became the first in the nation to adopt mandatory green building regulations that will take effect January 1, 2011. The program will be administered by local code enforcement officials and will not require costly third party certification to earn the CAL Green label. The new code will require construction waste to be recycled, among other climate friendly provisions.     
Link to full story.


Citizens of the Golden State get nervous about carbon rationing plans made in flusher times
Source:, Ronald Bailey.  April 6, 2010

The economic downturn, the collapse of the real estate sector and a tripling of the unemployment rate since the Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32) was passed in 2006 has raised doubt over the ability of the state to significantly reduce energy consumption by 2020 and create green jobs. A group of concerned citizens is seeking to put an initiative on the November Ballot to delay the Bill until unemployment drops below 5.5%.
Link to full story.


Courts Look at Emissions Rules, Nuclear Waste Disposal Fees
Source: Environmental Leader.  April 6, 2010.

The federal courts have been inundated with legal challenges to the regulation of emissions. Many industry groups are asking the courts to review agency action on a number of emissions related actions.  
Link to full story.


Expect Revised Climate Bill Before Earth Day
Source: Environmental Leader.  April 12, 2010.

A Climate Bill is expected to emerge in the coming weeks to coincide with the 40th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22nd. The Bill is expected to contain a limited cap-and-trade program that will apply to power plant initially and then will be expanded to other sources of emissions.
Link to full story.



Private Sector Initiatives

King’s College London Study Reveals Harsh Realities of Proposed EPA Regulations for Cement Industry
Source: Portland Cement Association.  March 30, 2010.

The study examines the impact of the proposal by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to promulgate stringent National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants on the cement manufacturing industry. The report asserts that the EPA failed to adequately account for certain risk factors, such as: economic stability, risk-risk trade off, lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions and global plant emissions.          
Link to full story:
Link to full report:


Carbon Permits Said to be in Excess in Europe
Source: The New York Times, James Kanter.  March 31, 2010.

In the global slow down there has been an excess of carbon credits flooding the markets. Major emitters have earned millions of euros from carbon credit trading while other areas of their business have floundered.  Critics have emerged as many major polluters have received carbon credits at no cost to help the polluters compete globally. 
Link to full story.


Concrete deal saves city $500,000
Source: The St. Augustine Record, Peter Guinta. April 3, 2010.

The City of St. Augustine, Florida found a way to re-use concrete rubble from a construction project as shoreline stabilization material. The material for the stabilization project would normally cost between $600,000 and $800,000 but re-using the concrete from the demolition project resulted in a net savings of $500,000.      
Link to full story.


Green Building Movement Raises Some Construction Defect, Claims Concern
Source: Insurance Journal, Andrea Wells.  April 7, 2010.

In light of the number of new green products and building techniques coming to the market there are latent risks involved in their use. Such risks include: construction defect problems, performance promises and insurer’s interest in new green markets. 
Link to full story:


How Concrete Plants Can Use Waste Heat to Preheat Water
Source: Environmental Leader.  April 8, 2010.

A new product allows waste heat to be captured and used to preheat incoming water to improve the energy efficiency of bulk thermal tanks used in concrete manufacturing facilities. 
Link to full story.


What to do about coal ash
Source:, Jack Betts.  April 11, 2010. 

While the effort to improve air quality by removing pollutants from emissions has succeeded, there are also other challenges presented by the success. The ash removed from smoke stack emissions is mixed with water and stored in retention ponds, according to the EPA there are 44 high hazard coal ash ponds that could pose a threat to human health in the US. EPA regulation of coal ash is still pending.    
Link to full story.


Anna M. Maiuri
Eric Jamison
Compiled twice monthly by Anna M. Maiuri, Principal, and Eric M. Jamison, Associate, of the Miller Canfield Climate Change Practice Team

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