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Sustainability watchdog sets concrete production water accounting standards

Sources: World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s Cement Sustainability Initiative, Geneva; CP staff

The Cement Sustainability Initiative has capped a two-year effort to formalize accounting of water consumption and recycling in cement, concrete and aggregate production. The new 34-page Guidance on Good Practices for Water Accounting builds on Protocol for Water Reporting for the Cement Industry (2014) and Water Key Performance Indicators (2015).

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Report tracks 28 percent jump in water, wastewater infrastructure outlays

Sources: Bluefield Research LLC, Boston; CP staff

Municipal water & wastewater utilities’ budgeting suggests pipe, treatment plant and pump expenditures will exceed $532 billion between 2016–2025, representing a 28 percent increase against comparable investment over the 2006–2015 window. The projected 10-year total is split by water treatment, supply and delivery, 48 percent; wastewater treatment and conveyance, 44 percent; and, storm water management, 8 percent.

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New Labor Department rules spike OSHA civil penalty amounts

Sources: U.S. Department of Labor; CP staff

Abiding the 2015 Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Improvements Act, through which Congress aims to advance violation fines’ effectiveness, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and sister agencies are directed to adjust penalty scales annually using what Labor Department officials describe as a much more straightforward method than previously available.

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Underwriter, Institute bring FORTIFIED Home building practice to mobile devices

Sources: Munich Reinsurance America Inc., New Jersey; Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS), Tampa, Fla.; CP staff

IBHS and property underwriting giant Munich Re America have launched FORTIFIED Home On the Go, an interactive app free from the iTunes Store. Using videos, animation, and technical specifications, it walks owners, contractors and architects through the home-strengthening process. Content is based on IBHS’ FORTIFIED Home program, which is recognized as the national standard in resilient construction.

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Fiber cement, roof tile, prestressed lead concrete products in 2015 market gains

Sources: Portland Cement Association, Skokie, Ill.; CP staff

PCA’s new “Survey of Portland Cement Consumption by User Group” underscores mixed year-over-year results among 16 U.S. market or product segments: Nine recorded growth, seven saw reduced volume in 2015 versus the prior year. Those gaining at least 20 percent were, in descending order, waste stabilization & solidification; fiber cement siding; concrete roof tile; soil cement, roller compacted concrete or full-depth reclamation/pavements; precast/prestressed concrete; and, soil cement or roller compacted concrete/water resources structures.

Read more: Fiber cement, roof tile, prestressed lead concrete products in 2015 market gains