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Crash! Boom! Bang!

Natural sounds in the green transition

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Crash! Boom! Bang!

The world is growing at a rapid pace. Between now and 2060, a new Paris will be built in the world every week! In growing cities, making space for new buildings sometimes requires demolishing old ones.
In Europe, about 850 million metric tons of construction and demolition waste (CDW) were created in 2020 alone. Buildings, roads, infrastructure and other human-made features of our surroundings – uses almost half the materials extracted globally every year and is a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions.
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How we design, construct and eventually demolish our built environment will have a major impact on the green transition. A circular economy could reduce global CO2 emissions from building materials by 38% in 2050, by reducing demand for steel, aluminum, cement, and plastic. It could also make the sector more resilient to supply chain disruptions and price volatility of raw materials.

At least 70% must be reused or recycled

In alignment with EU standards, as of 2020, at least 70% of construction and demolition waste (CDW) must be reused or recycled. Leading the way, countries like Germany and the UK surpass this benchmark with recycling rates of over 80% and 86%, respectively. The cost of landfill disposal is exceptionally high and the income a contractor can get for collected waste is calculated in the project cost, making it even more important to consider recycling.

Urban mining is a hidden value

Millions of unused and forgotten cables and pipes are also hidden under our cities. Metals such as copper and aluminum are forgotten when systems are decommissioned and replaced by new ones without being recovered. Metals also become dormant during ongoing maintenance and repairs or during urban construction projects when entire infrastructure zones are disconnected. Urban mining makes the most of materials such as concrete,

bricks, steel reinforcements, roofing materials, copper pipes and aluminum. It is a crucial component in making cities carbon neutral.

 

Epiroc accelerates the transformation of urban mining by providing a full range of tools for demolition and recycling. Read more here.

 

Sources:

https://www.politico.eu/sponsored-content/the-hidden-value-in-urban-mining/

https://www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/topics/built-environment/overview

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