The NIOB President, Kunle Awobodu, made the call when he led a delegation on a courtesy visit to Lafarge Plc in Lagos.
He suggested exploring ways to collaborate and promote mutually beneficial goals for the two organisations and ultimately, a positive impact on the Nigerian construction industry.
Awobodu said that the NIOB had a large reservoir of research resources, efforts and outputs, adding that some builders were continuously researching locally available materials that did not produce inferior performance results to the conventional ones.
He said, “One of such areas of research is the use of ‘pozzolana’, rice husk ash and corn cob ash as a partial replacement for cement.
“We have equally started preconstruction activities on a world class materials research centre at the Federal Capital Territory.”
Beyond publicising the research efforts and outputs of researchers in building materials, the president further stated that the utilisation of the research outputs in the production of cement would increase affordability as well as drive costs down.
He added that by the law of large numbers, it would also help the profitability and bottom line of manufacturers making it a win-win to all stakeholders and the society at large.
The Chairman of NIOB Research and Development Committee, Prof. Kolapo Eleka, explained that the development of Nigerian standards for such pozzolanic cement and other locally available materials was one of the steps necessary in manufacturing and utilisation.
The Chairman of Association of Builders in Academia, Prof. Martin Dada, also said using some of the alternative materials would promote profitability, noting that it would take efforts and resources to relocate the waste generated from a building demolished.
The Country Chief Executive Officer of Larfarge Plc, Khaled El Dokani, with his team comprising the Commercial Director, Gbenga Onimowo and the Head, Technical Products and Innovation, Femi Yusuff, welcomed the proposal.
El Dokani further raised the issue of reuse of items recovered from demolished or deconstructed buildings, thereby promoting sustainability and reduction of carbon footprint.
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