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NRC chairman welcomes Golden Bay funding announcement

Northland Regional Council Chairman Bill Shepherd welcomes the $13.5M investment in local Golden Bay Cement works announced by the Environment Minister today.

The funding grant, announced by Minister Dr Nick Smith at the Golden Bay cement works in Portland earlier today, is one of the initiatives aimed at disposing of the growing stockpiles of used tyres around the country which pose an increasing fire and environmental hazard.

The grant will allow the cement works to upgrade its existing coal and/or wood kilns with new high temperature kilns which use shredded rubber from used tyres to fuel the cement kilns. Ultimately this will allow up to 3.1 million tyres to be disposed of every year.

This new technology is also capable of incinerating the tyres in such a way that the energy output is increased and the by-product from the incinerated steel in the tyres is able to be re-used to contribute to the iron requirements of cement.

Chairman Shepherd says in addition to the proposed environmental benefits of reducing the tyre stockpiles in the north island and reducing the existing greenhouse gasses produced by coal, the construction of the new equipment will provide jobs for Northlanders and potentially increase the permanent workforce based at Portland long term.

ENDS

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