Cement Americas

SPR 2017

Cement Americas provides comprehensive coverage of the North and South American cement markets from raw material extraction to delivery and tranportation to end user.

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www.cementamericas.com • Spring 2017 • CEMENT AMERICAS 19 NATURAL GAS M any plants in the nonmetallic minerals industry would benefit from access to natural gas. But if your plant is located in a very rural part of the coun- try or is located on geographically challenging terrain, you might still be burning heavy fuel oils, coal or even tires. You are responsible for the plant and the surrounding community. Your plant must remain competitive, com- ply with ever stricter EPA air emissions regulations, and do its part to meet corporate "green goals." Since you are very good at what you do, you can probably adjust your boiler/kiln/etc., to pass a CO 2 test or fine-tune it to pass a NO x or a particulate test, but not all at the same time. This situation can cause a great deal of pressure for management. If your plant is not yet on a gas pipeline, you may think that your only "fix" is paying millions of dollars per mile for a pipeline extension. The money is one thing but the environmental requirements, environmental activ- ists, delays and bad press caused by a right-a-way pur- chase or eminent domain threat are just as bad. How do you find a solution for your plant? There is a new option called the virtual pipeline. At least 50 large plants in the United States are currently receiving trucked natural gas from a virtual pipeline. What is a Virtual Pipeline? A virtual pipeline is a fleet of tractor-trailers that deliv- ers the same gas that traditionally comes from a pipe- line. Virtual pipeline providers keep their trucks rolling so that the facility is provided with gas 24/7. The service does not require the plant to build storage as the gas is drawn out of the trailers directly into the powerhouse at whatever temperature and pressure is required. With between two and 20, 40-ft. trailers un- loading CNG all day long, the experience is like being on a traditional gas pipeline. A virtual pipeline can expand with you at no cost. The virtual pipeline service provider who had been deliver- ing eight loads a day for your process heat can up that to 12 loads a day after the expansion. No new capital requirement. Using Natural Gas As a Power Source Can't Get Natural Gas at Your Plant? Now There is a Way. By Mark S. Kuhar Aerial view of compressor station.

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