Why Recycling Construction Materials is Important for Your Business
With the environment becoming an increasingly popular topic of discussion, recycling construction materials is more important than ever. The most common method of disposing of C&D waste in the past has been sending it to landfills. Construction companies are now learning that recycling this waste is actually a much better option. In addition to saving energy and decreasing consumption, recycling helps greatly benefit a construction business’s bottom line.
Recycling construction material saves massive amounts of energy by decreasing the consumption of natural resources. According to Construction Business Owner, if we were to recycle all concrete and asphalt pavement generated in the US, we would save the energy equivalent of 1 billion gallons of gasoline or the removal of more than 1 million cars from the road.
Decreases waste in landfills
Landfills are filling up which means that it’s time to think of alternative ways to dump construction waste. Recycling this waste will repurpose it for future use. These materials can then be used for the same purpose again or can be turned into something new.
Recycling or reusing materials reduces your disposal and transportation costs. In addition, it often costs less money to dispose of materials that can be recycled!
With the increasing importance being put on green construction, recycling will give you a competitive edge over other construction companies who aren’t recycling. This differentiates you from the competition. People care about the environment and want to see that you care too! Recycling can also put you on a path towards LEED certification, the most popular green building certification.
So, what construction materials can be recycled?
Metal – Metals such as steel, aluminum, and copper can be sent to local metal scrap yards where they can be reused.
Asphalt pavement – Recycling leftover asphalt produces massive energy savings and is usually crushed and recycled back into asphalt.
Wood – Clean and untreated wood can be re-milled, chipped or ground, to make lumber, engineered board, boiler fuel, or mulch.
Concrete – Concrete is one of the most commonly recycled construction materials and can be reused in many different markets.
Glass – Certain types of glass from windows and tile can be recycled depending on the geographic location of the project.
Paper/Cardboard – Paper and cardboard can easily be recycled and repurposed.
Gypsum – Gypsum in drywall can be recycled into many different markets such as new drywall manufacture, cement manufacture, and agriculture.
Now, that you know what materials can be recycled, it’s time to integrate recycling into your construction business. Depending on your location, there will be different types of recyclers and resources. Once you identify your local recyclers and learn what you are allowed and not allowed to recycle, get started! The environment and your wallet will be happy you did.