Holcim’s Circular Explorer boosts its sustainability story

Published July 15, 2022, 6:22 PM

by Philip Cu Unjieng

As a global leader in the manufacture of building materials, it may not be easy, on the surface, to appreciate the sustainability initiatives of a company like Swiss giant Holcim. But to its credit, Holcim does take sustainability, and its corporate responsibility to building a better future now, very seriously.

One of the basic tenets of its E in its ESG (Environment, Social, and Governance) Agenda is how it strives to be a leader in the recycling of waste, utilizing technology and innovation to further its aim in promoting a circular economy.

During the launch of the Holcim-sponsored Circular Explorer, this was made evident from the outset. The Circular Explorer is a pioneering catamaran that’s solar-powered and was created to recover and recycle plastic from the oceans and rivers. It was built in partnership with One Earth—One Ocean and can be utilized as a vessel for education and science.

Holcim’s Circular Explorer is now helping rid Manila Bay of plastic waste.

The event was held at the Manila Yacht Club, and guests were given the opportunity to board the Explorer.

This aspect of education and science is highlighted via a partnership with the University of the Philippines’ Marine Science Institute. With built-in sensors and micro-plastic collectors on board the Explorer, live data mapping will help drive the Institute’s research programs.

Senator Cynthia Villar was one of the special guests of the launch event. She was joined by Horia Adrian, president and CEO of Holcim Philippines; Magali Anderson, Holcim chief sustainability and innovation officer; Dr. Deo Onda, deputy director for research at UP’s Marine Science Institute; Zoe Sibala, SVP and chief sustainability office of Holcim Philippines, and Edelio Bermejo, Holcim head of global R&D and innovation.

Senator Cynthia Villar (center) was the guest of honor during the launch. She was joined by Holcim executives led by Holcim Philippines president and CEO Horia Adrian.

Across the Philippines, Holcim’s more than 1,000 employees are operating four plants that are strategically poised to promote sustainability – with brands from ECOPlanet green cement, to building solutions that talk of resilience and repair. In line with its commitment to circular construction, Holcim purposely engages with cities around the world to accelerate this shift toward circular living, with material recycling and moving toward a net-zero future as a way of empowering communities.