Green Building Materials for Construction – Part 1
Can residential deconstruction and commercial deconstruction help you get significant tax deductions? Yes. Does donating deconstruction materials to non-profit organizations provide critical support for those less fortunate in our local communities? Yes. Win, win.
But if you’re like us, we always look for as many wins as possible for our clients, communities, and the planet. Bringing home the third win for deconstruction is its environmental benefits. Deconstruction is the green alternative to demolition.
Demolition typically tears down a structure as fast, and shall we say recklessly, as possible, with little to no regard for salvaging materials. That means most, if not all, demolition materials are then deemed as complete waste and shipped off to overflowing landfills. On the flip side, deconstruction strategically takes structures apart with the goal of reusing materials for other structures and even completely different applications. At the very least, if deconstruction materials are deemed unfit for reuse, they’ve at least been taken apart in a manner that allows them to be more easily recycled and remade into like-new construction materials.
So, the ultimate goal is always to reduce the volume of new materials used across all residential and commercial construction types. But, even with the most strategic and well-executed deconstruction projects, with as much material preserved for reuse as possible, contractors, developers, and construction managers will inevitably need additional materials to complete their new structure.
For those times when purely deconstructed materials can’t be used, the next best alternative is green building materials. The goal of using green building materials is to construct energy-efficient structures that minimize environmental impact. This is the first part of our blog series on leading green building materials, their characteristics, and their beneficial impact.
Green Building Materials Used in Construction
Earthen materials include adobe, cob, and rammed earth. These materials have been used for ages. And we’re finding more ways to reintegrate them into mainstream construction and reconstruction. For example, chopped straw, grass, and other fibrous materials can be added to enhance strength and durability.
These materials are often seen in more remote areas (for example, desert-scapes) due to the lack of availability or higher expense of certain materials. But there are many ways we can start to integrate more earthen materials in highly populated, suburban, and urban areas.
Wood is one of the most commonly used building materials globally. While converting raw timber to wood boards and planks for construction can lead to waste, timber byproducts can be used to make structural parts like walls, boards, doors, etc., in engineered wood. Engineered wood contains different layers of wood. For example, the middle layers are made of wood scraps, softwoods, wood fibers, etc. There’s no sight of wood losing its popularity as a common construction material, emphasizing the growing importance of comprehensive forest stewardship and replanting.
Stay tuned for the next part of our Green Building Materials blog series.
In the meantime, if you’d like expert guidance on deconstruction and using green building materials for construction, Contact Green Donation Consultants or call today at 540-786-8220 to speak with our team.