Rock Products

JUL 2019

Rock Products is the aggregates industry's leading source for market analysis and technology solutions, delivering critical content focusing on aggregates-processing equipment; operational efficiencies; management best practices; comprehensive market

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12 • ROCKproducts • July 2019 IN THE KNOW FAST FACT ŚŝŐŚůŝŐŚƚǁĂƐƚŚĞEĂƟŽŶĂů /ŶĚƵƐƚƌLJ>ĞĂĚĞƌƐŚŝƉƉĂŶĞů ǁŚŝĐŚŝŶĐůƵĚĞĚƚŚŽƵŐŚƚ ůĞĂĚĞƌƐĨƌŽŵĐŽŶƐƚƌƵĐƟŽŶ ŵĂƚĞƌŝĂůƐĂƐƐŽĐŝĂƟŽŶƐ The Texas Aggregates & Concrete Asso- ciation (TACA) welcomed more than 360 attendees to its 65th Annual Meet- ing June 12-14 at the Gaylord Hotel in Grapevine, Texas. A highlight was the National Indus- try Leadership panel, which included thought leaders Michael Ireland, president and CEO, Portland Cement Association (PCA); Michael Johnson, president and CEO, National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association (NSSGA); and Michael Philipps, president, National Ready Mixed Concrete Association (NRMCA). TACA President David Per- kins moderated the panel. The discussion opened around the topic of transportation/infrastructure, in which NSSGA's Johnson noted that the upcoming presidential and legislative elections would have a profound effect on the industry. "If we end up after the 2020 cycle with an all-Democrat line up (presidency, Senate and House)," said Johnson, "we would most likely have a $2 trillion infrastructure bill passed within 90 days. However, it would also present a bit of a paradox because the regulatory landscape would also change dramatically, creating a situ- ation in which we would have to be wary of unreasonable regulations and rules based upon unsound science that would make it more difficult to meet the increased demand for our products." PCA's Ireland noted: "That's one of the reasons why our associations are TACA Meeting Focuses on National Perspectives engaging in closer collaboration. What- ever happens in the upcoming elections, we will be far more effective in achiev- ing America's infrastructure needs if we pool our resources." He explained that the PCA is sharing back-office support and other assets with NRMCA, with both associations moving into the same building as the NSSGA headquarters in Washington, D.C. "Together," said Ire- land, "we are a stronger force." NRMCA's Philipps called for allocating more industry resources for promot- ing the advantages of concrete vertical construction (low- to mid-rise build- ings, mainly in the three- to seven-story range). In Texas, for example, Philipps explained how NRMCA is assigning more resources to vertical construc- tion. He touted the benefits of NRMCA's Build with Strength program, which advocates for the use of concrete, a material that is durable, affordable and energy-efficient, in addition to having aesthetic properties for both vertical and horizontal construction. All panelists referred to the superior construction attributes of concrete, including its sustainability and durabil- ity in more demanding environments, and to the innovative work being done by MIT's Concrete Sustainability Hub (CSHub). In fact, Jeremy Gregory, PhD, executive director of the CSHub, told TACA mem- bers, "Concrete is a low-impact material and the most used building material in the world. It is key to solving many of our infrastructure challenges. At the roundtable, Perkins concluded by saying, "We are excited about the growing collaboration among national trade associations to meet the chal- lenges of providing the United States with the infrastructure it needs to grow and thrive. That has a profound impact on what we do at the state level. We realize that working together, rather than individually, helps us to achieve a longer-term and more sus- tainable impact."

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