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Heidelberg, Italcementi deal will test Lehigh Hanson, Essroc synergy

Sources: HeidelbergCement AG, Heidelberg, Germany; Italcementi S.p.A., Bergamo, Italy; CP staff

Less than three weeks after the Lafarge Group and Holcim Ltd. merger triggered realignment of cement, concrete and aggregate production in key U.S. and Canadian markets, two European peers outlined an agreement perpetuating the cycle—bringing under one umbrella integrated operators entrenched in multiple states and provinces.

Read more: Heidelberg, Italcementi deal will test Lehigh Hanson, Essroc synergy

Caterpillar brings on-highway CT series truck production in-house

Sources: Caterpillar Inc., Peoria, Ill.; CP staff

Transitioning from a contract with Navistar International Corp., Caterpillar will begin designing and manufacturing its Class 8 on/off-highway truck line at a three-year-old Victoria, Texas, plant presently used for hydraulic excavator assembly. The line spans two mixer and dump-suited models, the set-back axle CT660 introduced in 2011, and set-forward axle CT681, which entered production in late 2014. The heavy haul-grade CT680, available as a tractor or straight truck, debuted earlier this year.

Read more: Caterpillar brings on-highway CT series truck production in-house

Meticulous sand & gravel stockpiles spell high performance concrete for California

Sources: Polaris Materials Corp., Vancouver, B.C.

Polaris Minerals has inaugurated its Port of Long Beach terminal, south of Los Angeles, unloading 77,000 tons of aggregate using a computerized conveying and stacking system designed to maintain fine and coarse grades’ integrity when stockpiled in large quantities. The materials were dispatched from the Orca Quarry, a Vancouver Island deposit Polaris is developing with an eye to construction prospects in the Los Angeles Basin, San Francisco Bay area and other port-served Pacific Coast markets.

Read more: Meticulous sand & gravel stockpiles spell high performance concrete for California

Utility, energy projects spike construction start figures for first half of 2015

Source: Dodge Data & Analytics, New York

Total construction starts on an unadjusted basis reached $336 billion during the first six months of this year, up 23 percent from the same period in 2014, Dodge Data & Analytics reports. Excluding electric utility and gas plant category activity, figures for the first half of 2015 would be up a more moderate 11 percent from the same period a year ago.

Read more: Utility, energy projects spike construction start figures for first half of 2015

Lawmakers move to strengthen EPA position on fly ash designation

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

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed “Improving Coal Combustion Residuals Regulation Act of 2015,” (H.R. 1734) in a bipartisan 258-166 vote. Sponsored by Rep. David McKinley, (R-WV), it codifies the Environmental Protection Agency’s recent decision to regulate fly ash and other coal combustion residuals (CCR) under Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) ‘solid’ versus ‘hazardous’ waste provisions.

Read more: Lawmakers move to strengthen EPA position on fly ash designation