ABINGDON, Va., March 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) has made a strategic equity investment in Alexandria, Va.-based CERATECH, Inc. (CTI). CTI manufactures a revolutionary "green cement" that utilizes 95 percent waste fly ash from electric utilities, dramatically reducing their landfill requirements while generating zero carbon dioxide emissions from the cement production process.
CTI's technology allows for beneficial repurposing of fly ash, a by-product of coal combustion, dramatically reducing the volume of ash that is being land filled. About three of every five tons of ash produced—approximately 42 million tons a year—end up in a landfill. A ton of CTI "green cement" diverts approximately 1,800 pounds of landfill waste. An additional benefit of CTI's unique technology is that its cement production process generates no carbon dioxide emissions furthering its attractiveness.
CTI's cement is a one-to-one replacement for Portland cement, with outstanding strength and durability characteristics. With no other cement on the market composed of more than 90 percent fly ash, CTI's green cement technology sets a new standard in meeting green construction guidelines, particularly the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED certification requirements.
Alpha's initial investment gives it 10.3 percent of the equity in CTI on a fully-diluted basis with an option to increase that stake to 28.3 percent of the fully-diluted shares if certain criteria are met. The amount of Alpha's initial investment was not disclosed.
"Alpha's investment is an ideal fit within our larger sustainability investments strategy," said Michael Peelish, chief sustainability officer for Alpha Natural Resources. "We're looking for ways to encourage development of new technologies that will bring sustainable environmental benefits to our utility customers. Conversion of waste fly ash into a green construction material represents an exceptional environmental use of coal combustion by-products."
According to Jon Hyman, CTI CEO, "Alpha's investment brings immediate benefit to CTI. Their strategic support—especially given Alpha's excellent reputation in the industry—is an endorsement that we know will have great value in our discussions with leading U.S. utilities. Expediting the development of partnering agreements with leading utilities will result in our ability to expand our cement production and distribution capabilities. Also it will strengthen our ability to compete cost effectively against traditional cement companies."
Founded in 2001, CERATECH has pioneered and commercialized a high performance sustainable alternative to traditional portland cement. With executive offices in Alexandria, Virginia and research and development based in Baltimore, Maryland, CERATECH has grown from offering a broad range of packaged repair mortars and concrete mixes to high volume, highly durable bulk cements for typical concrete construction and demanding industrial and military applications. More information about CERATECH can be found on the company's website at www.ceratechinc.com.
About Alpha Natural Resources
Alpha Natural Resources is one of America's premier coal suppliers with coal production capacity of greater than 90 million tons a year. Among U.S. producers, Alpha is a major supplier and exporter of metallurgical coal used in the steel-making process and is a major supplier of thermal coal to electric utilities and manufacturing industries across the country. The company, through its affiliates, employs approximately 6,500 people and operates approximately 60 mines and 13 coal preparation facilities in Appalachia and the Powder River Basin. More information about Alpha can be found on the Company's website at www.alphanr.com.