Pertama Ferroalloys Bamboo Planting in Offsetting Carbon Footprint

Credit Source: Pertama Ferroalloys Sdn Bhd

In a significant move towards reducing its carbon footprint, Pertama Ferroalloys initiated a bamboo planting event  signifying a shift toward sustainable practices in its ferroalloy production process. Spearheaded by Assistant Deputy General Manager Tan Sze Yung and Project Senior Manager Yang Heng, the planting event was attended by Pertama staff, establishing an additional 15 hectares of bamboo plantation, of which 5 hectares had been planted in 2018.

Being the first ferroalloy plant in Malaysia to embark on bamboo cultivation, this project aims to serve as a sustainable resource for Pertama’s ferroalloys production, simultaneously setting a benchmark in reducing carbon emissions and greenhouse gas discharges in Sarawak.

Distributed naturally in tropical and subtropical climate regions, many countries recognize bamboo’s contribution to climate change as efficient carbon sinks. Studies have also discovered that bamboo absorbs more carbon dioxide (CO2) than nearly every other perennial plant. As bamboo is also generally considered an easy-maintenance plant and is resistant to most pests and diseases, Pertama recognizes it as a contributor to air cleaning, and also and enhancer to soil fertility through shedding matter, as well as its ability to thrive in degraded soils unsuitable for other agricultural crops.

Pertama employs the tall and sturdy Buluh Betung (Dendrocalamus Asper), a type of native bamboo in Southeast Asia and also known as giant bamboo or dragon bamboo. Due to its enormous straight clums covered in velvet-like hair, growing from 15 to 30 meters, Pertama utilizes the Buluh Betung as a replacement for Acacia wood chips and bamboo charcoal in its manufacturing process. Additionally, the Thai Silk Bamboo (Bambusa Nana) is also being planted to substitute mild steel rods in its production process.

In ferroalloys production, fossil carbon is used as a reducing agent in the smelting process. Therefore, the use of bamboo charcoal as a bio-based carbon carrier can act as a substitute reducing agent in ferroalloy production. Replacing fossil carbon with bio-based bamboo charcoal can effectively act as a renewable and environmentally friendly alternative reducing agent. Bamboo charcoal’s lower emissions during the reduction process ultimately align with green initiatives, making it a sustainable choice that supports the transition from fossil carbon dependency in the industry.

Pertama, as a pioneer ferroalloy plant in Malaysia, emphasizes its continuous efforts to integrate conscious methods across its operations, setting off with this bamboo planting initiative. Similarly, as the first ferroalloy plant in Malaysia to establish this project, Pertama intends to set a standard for local operations in Sarawak  in pursuing ethical environmental approaches in their business obligations.