Although many factors are affecting the construction industry, climate change is still one of the biggest agents that dictates the trends in the industry. Due to the current climate change condition, the pressure to reduce emissions is very much on. It is a known fact that the industry uses heavy machinery on-site like hoist equipment and construction lifts which can contribute to carbon footprints.
The fact the construction and building industries are included in the list of top contributors of carbon emissions is not a secret. These industries emit up to 39 percent of the world’s carbon emissions. This percentage includes operational emissions (28%) and the embodied or upfront carbon emissions from construction materials and processes (11%).
However, the world cannot go on without the construction and building industry. Houses, buildings, and other infrastructures need somebody to work on them. The only option now is to make more eco-conscious decisions in acquiring materials and during operations.
Eco-Friendly Ways to Do Construction
Here are some ways to be more eco-friendly in the construction industry:
Choose materials wisely.
Some of the most common materials in construction are not sustainable such as concrete and steel. They make use of non-renewable resources and they are nearly impossible to reuse.
Although, understandably, these materials are a great fit for bigger projects like skyscrapers– using more sustainable materials like bamboo is not out of the question.
It is much easier to opt for sustainable materials like bamboo, cork, or hempcrete for smaller projects like houses. These materials have shorter re-growth times and they are durable as well.
Limit Surface Run-Off.
Surface runoff in construction projects contains pollutants like oil and fuel from vehicles, heavy construction equipment (such as hoists and lifts), paints, solvents, and other harmful substances. Construction projects do not only produce water waste, but they can also contaminate local water supplies which can damage the environment. Contaminating groundwater can make it dangerous for human and animal consumption.
Surface runoff can be reduced by scheduling projects in phases. If a project is scheduled in phases, there is more opportunity to limit the potential for surface runoff at any one time during the phase.
If the construction site is near a watercourse, it is best to leave an adequate gap from the site to the body of water. By doing so, it prevents loose soil and other materials from polluting the water.
Consider Pre-fabrication Methods or Modular Construction
Modular construction involves manufacturing parts of the project in a controlled warehouse environment and then transporting them to the site with the help of a hoist equipment. This process reduces emissions, material waste, and lessens pollution sites.
Since parts of the project are created in a controlled environment, the risks for both construction workers and the environment are significantly lessened.
On top of that, since the panels for the project are pre-made, the construction company can recycle or reuse them for a new site or project which reduces energy demand by up to 82%.
Although the world is changing and technology is everywhere– the construction industry seems to remain under-digitized today. Since everything has to be on paper, there ought to be a lot of paper wastes after each project.
Going digital has many benefits including better admin and planning processes due to the option for real-time collaboration. Thanks to technology, different team members can view and edit documents simultaneously. Digitizing the industry does not only minimize paper wastes but also minimize wasting time due to delays and downtimes during projects.
Digitizing construction companies will result in the reduction of labor costs, time spent on site, and many more.
All Things Considered
Going eco-friendly is now a trend and all for the right reasons. Many ways are available for even the construction industry, one of the top contributors of carbon emission, to reduce its carbon footprints. Many construction companies are making a conscious effort to be a part of the solution instead of the problem.
For instance, United Hoist offers construction hoist equipment that is duty-efficient and supports the culture of eco-consciousness.
If the construction and building industry can come together and:
- choose sustainable materials
- reduce their water wastes
- consider modular construction
- and digitize their process
It will surely make a significant impact on the world. Keep in mind that there is no effort too small when it comes to saving the environment.