There are five ways in which concrete can help “green” construction::
1 It creates recyclable and sustainable works
2 It helps to save energy
3 it is recyclable and may contain recyclable
4 It is locally manufactured
5 It produces very long-lasting buildings

1 It eliminates waste in the construction process. There are a large number of parts and materials in the traditional system (for example, in the case of a dividing wall) and this means there are breakages and/or losses during transport or handling. This does not occur with concrete because if there is any surplus at the worksite it can be taken to the concrete production plant where it is poured into decantation pools for recycling. Moreover, in the traditional system we have to into account the costs of broken materials, their collection and transport to an authorised landfill. There is hardly any rubble in works that are constructed using concrete. Concrete does not have any poorly cut parts or waste.

2 Since they are better insulated thermally, reinforced concrete dwellings contribute to energy savings by requiring less air-conditioning and heating consumption in order to maintain stable temperatures. In addition, it provides the dwelling with the prestige of being environmentally friendly which attracts a large number of potential customers with environmental commitments.

3 Concrete, together with steel, is one of the most easy-to-recycle materials. Being an inert material, it is easy to recycle. The owners of in-situ reinforced concrete dwellings can be quite certain that their properties are completely recyclable. Moreover, on many occasions concrete already contains recycled elements in the form of aggregates or conglomerates.

4 Concrete is an ecological material from several points of view. Its components are in abundance (water, aggregate, cement and sand) and, energetically, are a lot cheaper to obtain than other construction materials. Since concrete components are easy to obtain, the concrete itself can be produced at concrete production plants close to the worksite so that large distances are not involved.

5 The life cycle of an in-situ reinforced concrete dwelling is much longer and mode adaptable to the environment. The life cycle of a dwelling is measured by the energy and materials employed to construct it, together with its durability. Concrete has a useful lifetime of over 200 years, thus the employed energy and materials have excellent amortisation prospects.

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