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Sunday, 21 February 2021

Concrete action for sustainability with Scania biofuel trucks


From the marina filled with luxury yachts to the surrounding hills lined with buildings, Monaco is a dense principality with narrow and winding roads. In this intense traffic one of Ecotrans’ Scania P 410 concrete mixers deftly manoeuvres.


What may seem as a classic mixer truck is, in fact, a tangible expression of the sustainability approach adopted by Entreprise Monégasque de Travaux (EMT) and Ecotrans throughout its fleet. Fuelled by biodiesel produced from rapeseed, the trucks also feature electrically-powered mixers.

The group EMT Group with Ecotrans is specialised in the production, sale and transport of ready-mixed concrete. “We are committed to the environment. These are not just words but the heartfelt commitment of the group,” says Philippe Ortelli, president of EMT and Ecotrans.

With a production capacity of 130,000 cubic metres of concrete per year, EMT has developed low carbon concrete as well as installing recycling systems for water and rock with the aim of achieving zero waste.

Considering all stages of production, concrete is responsible for 4–8 percent of the world’s CO2 emissions. Only coal, oil and gas are a greater source of greenhouse gases. Half of concrete’s CO2 emissions are created during the manufacture of clinker, the most-energy intensive part of the cement-making process.

EMT has been instru­mental in changed regula­tions for lower CO2 emissions

EMT has developed its low carbon concrete made of cement, ground granulated blast-furnace slag, fly ash and aggregates. For slag, EMT reuses waste from steel production and the fly ash is sourced from power plants that still use coal to supplement electricity production during peaks. With its concrete, EMT has reduced carbon emission from 365 kg/m3 to 150–200 kg. “Overall in our production, we have achieved nearly a 50-percent reduction in carbon emissions compared to our competitors,” says Ortelli.

The company has selected the French biofuel B100 as the most sustainable alternative available – 100 percent sourced from rapeseed on fallow land, which reduces carbon emissions by 60 percent. “It also meets our lifecycle and resale requirements,” says Ecotrans’ Managing Director Éric Humilier. “In six years when we renew our fleet, the trucks can join the traditional used vehicle market.”

Ecotrans’ Scania XTs have reinforced chassis for the gross weight of 44 tonnes, a Monegasque particularity. “We have been instrumental in changed regulations by putting forward environmental arguments: more volume of concrete transported means fewer trucks on the roads and lower CO2 emissions,” Humilier. “We have estimated the reduction in traffic at 33 percent.”

With a fleet that is already sustainable, Ecotrans has expanded its 12 to 20 vehicles at the end of 2020. “We are a small family business where we can implement what we believe in,” says Humilier.

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