Building materials such as sand, aggregates, fly ash and other components of concrete are key to the success of any construction project and should be a prime consideration for all involved in the industry including professional bodies.

Photo by Haneen Krimly | Unsplash

Photo by Haneen Krimly | Unsplash

This is according to Nico Pienaar of surface mining industry association, ASPASA, which was one of the founding members of the Construction Alliance South Africa (CASA), an organisation that seeks to unite all aspects of the construction industry in a common goal of sustainability of the industry.

Since its establishment in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns which threated to destroy the industry, the alliance has sought to establish firm lines of communication between role-players, including raw materials suppliers.

Most recently, the South African Coal Ash Association (SACAA) has joined the alliance representing an abundant source of coal ash that is increasingly used as a principal construction material in the formulation of cement, concrete, ground preparation, as a replacement for some grades of aggregates and even as a replacement for cement.

The inclusion of ASPASA and SACAA in the construction industry supply chain is seen as a critical step towards meeting the country’s construction targets. With its overarching reach across all relevant industry bodies in the industry, CASA will provide raw materials suppliers under the banner of these associations with a means of communicating with role players and working towards common goals.

Some of the main objectives of CASA are to:

  • Formulate effective joint action plans to achieve the mandate and purpose of CASA
  • Address the accelerated transformation of the construction industry
  • Engage in education, training and awareness programme
  • Unblock relief measures for the industry to remain sustainable
  • Identify infrastructure project opportunities in both the public and private sector
  • Address the regulatory matters which impede the industry
  • Address systemic challenges and fast-track intervention
  • Promote ethical and social responsibility
  • Promote the use of innovative construction technologies
  • Promote research and evidence-based policymaking for the construction industry
  • Value collaboration, integrity and leadership as guiding forces

“These principals are also at the head of our agenda and ASPASA and SACAA will play an active role in the alliance to ensure that raw materials are available for any construction project that is required anywhere in the country. Collaboration is at the centre of all industry bodies in the construction industry and the establishment of CASA now has the ability to knit them together in a cohesive manner with shared goals,” he concludes.