Monday, August 27, 2012

A Brief History of Recycling

Recycling has come a long way in the past few decades, what used to be thought of as an obscure industrial process is now a common practice among people.  Today eco-friendly companies like Envipco with leaders like Alexander F Bouri and Gregory S Garvey are trying to change the way companies recycle materials.  Envipco wants other businesses to embrace a "use and reuse" model of consumption that heavily relies on the use of and making of recyclable materials.   This may not seem like it's a new concept, but the way the Envipco is working closely with other companies on an international scale makes this business truly innovative.  In order to be truly amazed by how far people have come as a society in regards to recycling, you need to look at the basics of recycling history.

Pre-Modern Recycling

Despite its recent popularity, recycling isn't by any means a new concept.  In 400 BC Plato extolled the benefits of recycling, and archeological studies of ancient waste dumps have shown evidence of common house wastes being reused during times of resource scarcity.  Before the industrial revolution scrap metals were continuously melted down and repurposed into other materials, and the dust and ash from coal and wood fires was frequently collected and down-cycled to be used as a base material in brick making.   
During war time the recycling of scrap metal was very encouraged, and some people were even able to make profitable scrap metal recycling businesses to meet needs.  Interest in recycling grew again during the 1970's energy crisis, and since then the recycling of glass, metals, paper, and other materials has become common place.

21st Century Recycling

Today there is a focus on recycling non-biodegradable materials like polystyrene (more commonly known by its trademark name of Styrofoam) and plastic.  Manufacturing both polymers produces an awful lot of waste, and also requires the use of petroleum.  Recycling the materials would drastically help lessen the negative impact they have on the environment.  Companies are always looking for new and better ways to recycling plastics because it's such a time consuming and difficult process.  Envipco is hoping to not only improve the plastic recycling process, but to also get as many companies as possible involved with their recycling efforts. 

Friday, August 24, 2012

What Does Seament Do?

Seament is a cementitious products group, offering quality goods and services around the world since the 1950's. Founded by Alexander F Bouri, Seament is a family-run business. Alexander F Bouri is a Lebanese/Greek national who started off his career in Nigeria selling life insurance and eventually started trading cement there with a small loan. He is now the chairman of Seament Holding and spends his free time playing chess, Scrabble, and growing his own food. So what exactly is Seament? Seament is known for their cement manufacturing expertise, distinctive floating terminals, versatile distribution systems and consistent standards. Seament's achievements, consistency, and high quality services have made them the world’s number one independent cement group, as well as the provider of the most efficient solutions if a cement crisis were to occur. Seament specializes in the following:

Cement Manufacturing
Seament's plants produce a consistent, quality product, available in a variety of mix designs. Many of these products are both CE and ISO certified. Other mix designs are available on request, as are technical product certifications.

Floating Terminals
As the demand for cement grew, terminals were no longer capable of handling the amount of cement that was being delivered. This is when Seament conceptualized the floating cement terminal, which was able to solve over 60 cement shortage crises around the world.

Cement Shipping
Seabulk Shipping was conceptualized by Seament when the need for cement became worldwide. Seament is an international leader and has the ability to ship and handle bulk amounts of cement to any port around the world.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Accidental Philanthropist

The worlds of business and philanthropy are linked closer together than most people think.  After all both business and charities need money in order to function, and they both can provide important and needed services for others.  Business and charity can come together in a variety of ways, but there are some companies that are already unknowingly making their business into a force of humanitarian aid.  Alexander F. Bouri, the founder of Seament, thought he was just starting a cement business, but in reality he transformed an entire industry and helped developing nations by breaking black markets and monopolies.

After selling life insurance in Nigeria, Bouri saw an opportunity in the cement trade.  With a $50,000 loan and his own business acumen he soon became known as the "Cement King".  As Bouri's business grew, he realized the need to quickly ship cement to others parts of the globe.  Over the next years he purchased 12 specialized cement vessels (carriers, floating terminals, etc).  In the 1970's the demand for cement skyrocketed, and many ports became overwhelmed with the amount of cargo and large ships.  Environmental and social factors also showed that there needed to be a dramatic change in order for people to still get their needed building materials.

In 1978 Seament pioneered the floating cement terminal concept, and that concept got the company recognized as an industry leader.  The floating terminal was destined to change the way people pack and ship cement.   The revolutionary Seament set up was able to deliver up to 12,000 metric tons a day from a single terminal.  Their floating set up helped get building materials to developing nations where cement was desperately needed to improve crumbling infrastructure and smash black market prices.  Seament's cement has built buildings in Yemen, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Kuwait, Turkey, Nigeria, and countless other countries.

Bouri began as a businessman, and turned into a philanthropic businessman.  His story goes to show you how many different ways people can positively impact the world.

2012 Cement Consumption May Exceed Expectations

According to current news, 2012 cement consumption may face even more growth than previously expected. Both residential and nonresidential construction activity as increased due to such favorable and mild weather conditions this year, resulting in more cement being used on these projects. The Portland Cement Association (also known as the PCA) predicts that the expected increase in cement consumption nearly doubles for the year. Compared to 2011 levels, construction activity is up 4.2 percent - and is expected to go up to 5.5 percent - after seven years of decline.

So are there more reasons for the astonishing growth in cement consumption besides a mild winter? Experts suspect that the changes in cement intensity are also a contributing factor. Cement intensity is the amount of cement used per dollar of construction activity. The PCA believes that because cement is used most in the early stages of a product, the drop in construction starts-ups were responsible for about 75% of the reduced need for cement during the recession. With the creation of new jobs and more projects, the construction industry can only go up from here, leading to the increase in cement consumption.

Major cementitious companies, such as Seament managed by Alexander Bouri, Elbasan Cement Factory managed by Chief Executive Officer Charles Bouri, and others around the globe are expected to see a growth in business due to the estimated cement consumption increase.

Recycling Waste into Building Materials

More companies than ever are now basing their goals and objectives on "going green." Some companies are even completely based on making building materials out of various types of waste. Whether its garbage or power plant waste, these businesses are making it a point to recycle as much as possible to help the environment.

Mark Bouri is the Founder and CEO of Environmental Building Materials (also known as EBM), a company that turns thermal power plant waste into building materials. EBM is considered to be a leading provider of bulk materials that strongly serves the construction industry by turning by-products in valuable resources that would have otherwise been overlooked. EBM's clients who use their products are able to improve quality and performance at lower costs while EBM creates new markets and turns negative costs into positive returns around the globe.

Environmental Building Materials specializes in testing and quality control, research and development, market analysis, certification, project design and management, logistics and transportation, shipping and bulk handing, and marketing and sales support. EBM uses power plant waste, particularly Fly Ash, Pozzolana, Slag, and GGBS to create their building materials. Mark Bouri's company strongly believes in the environmental impact that turning power plant waste into building materials can make. The reuse of waste provides an excellent, environmentally-preferred alternative to other waste management methods due to the fact that it reduces air, water and land pollution, limits the need for new natural resources, such as timber, petroleum, fibers and other materials.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

What is a Floating Cement Terminal?

Used by major cement manufacturing groups, floating cement terminals are large vessels that are able to ship cement via waterways, be it ocean, sea or even some rivers. These vessels have solved shortage crises around the world and continue to be used in many countries, particularly Nigeria and Libya. These cement vessels were pioneered be Seament- a cementitious products group that has offered quality goods and services around the world since the 1950's- founded by Alexander F Bouri. Many people recognize the floating cement terminal as a revolutionary concept that has forever changed the way cement is handled.

Seament Holding, founded and currently still operated by the chairman, Alexander F Bouri (also known as the "Cement King" worldwide in the 1980's), has solved many cement shortage crises around the world, which is estimated to be over 60 shortages. So, what are the benefits and features of floating cement terminals?
·         These vessels can easily birth in harbors with very little or underdeveloped infrastructure; no buildings or facilities are necessary for the terminals to operate.
·         The vessels can be chartered for a short period of time in order to handle brief peaks of cement demand.
·         The vessels can receive cement from shuttle ships carrying cement- both bagged and bulk cement can be loaded directly to trucks or wagons for further distribution once the destination is reached.
·         These terminals can either be self-propelled or non-self-propelled.

Without this revolutionary concept of the floating cement terminal, it's unlikely that the 60+ cement shortage crises would have been properly solved in time, resulting to continuous high black market prices and slow infrastructure development in emerging markets. Today, floating cement terminals are used regularly around the world, transporting cement efficiently and with ease.