Many construction companies in Michigan, and all over the United States, have embraced sustainable construction practices over the past ten years. As we move into the next decade, here are a few ways to transform your building or construction site from wasteful to eco-friendly.
The demolition process can be messy. Rather than dumping old concrete and steel, consider recycling them for other construction jobs. Industrial crushing facilities can recycle these materials into dry aggregate for new construction.
A building’s carbon footprint can be reduced by using locally sourced materials, as transportation of materials requires a vast amount of energy. Using materials that are available nearby also helps support and grow local businesses.
Often overlooked, water recycling systems are a great way to save money on buildings. Rain water collection systems can collect and store water to be used for landscape irrigation. This takes advantage of resources that are readily available and would not be used otherwise. Another issue to keep in mind is stormwater, which can overflow local sewer systems.
Harnessing sun and wind power is a great option for long-term sustainability. Wind turbines require very little maintenance once installed. Photo-voltaic windows can be used to control interior temperatures, and turning a roof into a solar panel farm can take pressures off electricity providers. The start up costs can be a bit expensive, but the long-term savings make alternative power options a great choice.
Construction has made great strides in sustainability, and there will continue to be opportunities for companies to continue growing in eco-friendly ways. 2020 may bring more awareness to zero net energy buildings, highlight alternative materials, or improve upon the current standards for green building. Regardless of new methods, the construction industry will continue to adapt to these changes and build innovative structures.