Officials showed off the site just south of the landfill on Wednesday, Nov. 8, voicing their hope it will soon be transformed into a new “sustainable business park.” They hope the site could attract companies specializing in reclaiming or converting waste materials that would otherwise be dumped into the landfill, ideally expanding West Michigan’s footprint in green industry while simultaneously reducing the rate at which the area’s landfills grow.
John Steinbeck and Dusty VanRenan Green Rivers Recycling LLC.
“Old-growth lumber is lumber that is so old that the trees that were here when the settlers first came or what they used or milled for building materials. It’s a very dense wood, impervious to termites and it’s highly sought after by a lot of builders throughout the country,” he said. “You’re also preserving these old buildings, which is really important to some of the farmers and owners around here. The building obviously can’t stay, but at least the materials that their forefathers used to erect these structures can still prove to be preserved and not just wasted by going through a landfill and being burned.”
Two leaves from The Mirror of Human Salvation. These pages were reused as a wrapper for a book at some later time. The ghosting of the book it adorned can still be seen in the dark, abraded portion that spans the two pages. (Image: The Walters Art Museum/CC-0)
According to Fleming, the British raided Roman ruins for building materials to the extent that until the 11th century, Christian churches in Britain were constructed mostly from scavenged Roman materials. This assertion has been verified through architectural surveys, one of which discovered over 300 churches around London built from Roman ruins. Similarly, tile, ceramics, pottery, and iron were all reclaimed and repurposed.
The large ship measures 30 meters (98 feet) and weighs four tons. It was built from more than 500 pieces of reused materials, including seven kilometers (4.6 miles) of steel cable, wooden moulds, discarded furniture, signboards and boats found on site.
A large vessel called “a baştarda” built from waste materials in Istanbul was transported to Venice and installed at the pavilion as a symbol of cultural connections and transformation of borders.
The idea originated with artist and environmentalist Jo Hanson. After creating her own art with trash and assisting with campaigns such as city-wide street sweepings, in the late 1980s Hanson approached Recology about a program where artists could reuse materials from the dump. At around the same time, San Francisco was implementing new recycling laws, and looking for ways to raise awareness about waste. The artist-in-residence program fit that bill.
Recology’s AIR program has been operating for over 15 years. Started by Jo Hanson, a former artist and educator, it’s hosted over 100 artists since then who have been given 24-hour access to its equipment and studio spaces – all with the hope that it would inspire others to become better at recycling.
After interning with the RA in the summer of 2014, Michaela Harms continued her studies in Civil Engineering on exchange in Lefkosia, Cyprus at Frederick University. Her focus in the program was on structural design and renewable energies, both vital aspects of sustainable construction innovations. Now in her final year of studies, she has returned to Helsinki to work and complete her thesis on estimating decentralized renewable energy potentiality with Bionova, a Helsinki-based sustainability consulting company and LCA innovator.
Upon completing her BSc, Michaela plans to return stateside. She hopes to gain further expertise in research and design through work with an innovative sustainable building or renewable energy company. Her heart still lies in grass roots sustainable solutions. She hopes to continue to her Masters in 2017 at the Iceland School of Energy.
Interested in interning for a cutting edge social media site dedicated to reducing waste with building material reuse and architectural salvage? Join the Reclamation Administration – we give good internships!
Upcycled pallets become functional furniture. Photo via Shutterstock.
“Upmod is a social sharing marketplace for buyers and sellers of environmentally-conscious products made from used raw materials,” he said. “Upcycling is a major societal trend, but is still little understood as an industry, Upmod intends to change that and to consolidate major aspects of this emerging industry.”
We need to measure the size and impact of the Building Materials Reuse Industry in an organized way.
The editorial this month was going to be on wood as an important material in the building salvage industry in the United States. Indeed, wood is one of the materials most recovered from buildings. Whole businesses are dedicated to reclaimed wood from large timbers used as structural elements in large old buildings. Most general building salvage operations have a significant amount of lumber, but they also carry a lot of other items that are made out of wood or wood products. Cabinets, doors, flooring, trim, paneling, even some higher end windows have a lot of wood, and usually the wood is in a form that cannot be recycled — which makes reuse the best option. But how much wood reuse is going on? How much of salvaged material is wood or a wood product such as MDF or particle board? How many businesses are actively salvaging wood or selling reusable building materials? How does the practice of salvage and reuse of wood and wood products vary from region to region?
Construction waste management allows reuse and recycling of waste materials such as concrete, wood, plastic, and glass and can. This resolves supply shortages at construction sites as recycled construction waste can be reused as building material. Developed countries such as the US, the UK, and Germany and developing countries such as China, India, and Brazil are the major construction waste generators.
Further, the report states that illegal dumping of waste is a major factor hindering construction waste management market growth.
The analysts forecast global construction waste management market to grow at a CAGR of 9.67% by revenue over the period 2014-2019.
Matthew Stepp (left) and Mike Weston of Rusted Raven Furniture Co. upcycle furniture at their workshop in Hampden. Ashley L. Conti | BDN
Stepp and Weston are among several artists in Maine who are upcycling furniture and restoring old pieces.
“They are not calling it solid waste management, they are calling it materials management,” Gedert said.
Sustainable materials management or SMM is a term that has gained much traction in recent months. It is the new buzzword for sustainability, recycling and energy recovery programs, and along with its close relatives zero waste and the circular economy, it is a term that isn’t going to go away. Even the highest public authority on the subject of solid waste is changing its terminology.
When the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its annual data on solid waste generation and disposal in June 2015 it was no longer called Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States: Facts and Figures.” The report they released this year, which includes figures for 2013, is titled “Advancing Sustainable Materials Management: 2013 Fact Sheet.”
Above: Construction waste is segregated and stockpiled for re-use on other sites
Current figures show that the UK recycles more of its construction and demolition (C&D) waste than most other EU countries. Some projects have recorded landfill diversion rates of more than 90% while the overall average rate in 2012 was a respectable 66.4%. That average rate is predicted to increase to 75.5% by 2020. An optimistic estimate, maybe, but still in line with the Waste Framework Directive which set a 2020 recycling rate target of 70% (by weight) for re-use, recycling and other recovery of C&D waste.
via Waste not, want not.
Austrian company Fipofix believes that it’s identified a material better-suited to the high seas, saying that its specially processed volcanic fiber-based composite, more commonly known as basalt fiber, offers a better performance-price ratio than carbon fiber or fiberglass and can be recycled after use.
The Seattle City Council adopted a goal for recycling 70 percent of construction waste by 2020 — the driving force behind the new requirements. We are confident this is achievable.
Sharp and sleek, the glossy white surface of this futuristic desk design is crafted from a reclaimed Boeing airplane wing.
For construction and demolition waste the DoD set a goal of 58 percent to be recycled – Fort Leonard Wood exceeded that by diverting 79 percent of that waste from landfills.
“There’s almost no limit to the materials that can be used to create clothing and accessory designs that can be modeled at the Hatch Trashion Show,” Rost said. Designers can enter in categories ranging from “Unconventional Materials” to “Altered Clothing”; both require that 60 percent of the materials used are repurposed or recycled. New this year: the “Paper” category, in which source material can be any type of paper product (with an 85 percent repurposed/recycled requirement); and a division just for accessories.
Many of the problems that have prevented waste reduction in the C&D sector have little to do with the reuse or recyclability of the material being thrown away. In fact, StatsCan released a report in 2008 which noted that 75% of material sent to landfill still had valuable life left in it.
Acehnese children played Thursday near a house on which a boat landed in 2004 after it was swept away by a tsunami in Banda Aceh, Indonesia. The house and boat have been preserved as a monument. Associated Press
Three months after the tsunami, the UNDP started a $40.5 million recycling program that employed 400,000 temporary workers to pluck wood and stone from the rubble and use the materials to rebuild roads and houses as well as to make furniture. The recycled waste was used to reconstruct 62 miles of roads and manufacture 12,000 pieces of wooden furniture, Mangkusubroto said.
Since 2011 the RA has been a primary site for news and research on building material waste prevention. Posts on projects, programs, policy, people and the amazing progress made in reclaiming beautiful materials from going to waste!
- Over 3,000 links to inspiring stories, collaboration, and design
- Resource pages on reuse centers, regional policy, reuse design links
- Original content articles, featured artists, announcements, and internships
The building material reuse community is a thriving growing industry of professionals and policy-makers who are changing the world for the better! The Reclamation Administration is uniting this diverse community through daily news.
This free site needs capital to evolve. We need $5,000 for:
- Publication of our First Book on reclaimed designs by the talented craftspeople featured over the years
- New Logo and Marketing campaign to reach more readers
- Additional supply & demand Resource Pages to connect people to materials
- To become a Limited Liability Corporation: The Reclamation Administration, LLC
If the funding goal isn’t reached, The Reclamation Administration will continue to provide these services but at a much slower pace. There is a high demand for inspirational news on reclaimed building materials – and we want to answer the call!
The RA is an ongoing source of inspiration for design, policy, collaboration, business, environmental issues, job creation, and education. The RA features daily information highlighting the “Triple Bottom Line” model of sustainability. The RA provides daily news that People, Planet, and Profit are synergistic when reclaiming building materials.
- Social change in the form of job creation, and the establishment of Deconstruction as a Trade Skill
- Environmental and ecological impact through reducing the waste stream and limiting the need for consuming raw materials
- Financial profit from creating a new industry in harvesting and producing products from reclaimed building materials
Over 100,000 people have visited the RA since it’s creation with an average of 100 new visitors a day. Over 400 readers are dedicated followers.
Risks & Challenges
The RA has been operating as a blog for over three years. The new funds will go to registering The Reclamation Administration as a LLC. The RA is a Social Entrepreneurship – a business with a mission and we have a lot more to learn!
Here’s what we have so far:
- Over three years of support in consistent & reliable information on building material reuse
- Partnerships with national organizations, businesses, craftspeople, and government
- Small business graduate through Mercy Corps North West
Other Ways You Can Help
If you can’t contribute financially send us your news instead! We are always looking to spread the word and hear people’s stories on reuse. Send our campaign to someone you know, take a moment to pass it on – thank you.
- Get the word out about The Reclamation Administration
- Use the Indiegogo share tools!
The practice dates “back to ancient Egypt and perhaps beyond,” Mergold says. “It’s extremely pragmatic and symbolically charged. More than recycling, spolia also has social, cultural and even political dimensions. We think of it as an archaic practice, yet we also think that we have just invented recycling, life hacking and adaptive reuse. In fact, it has been practiced for millennia.”
Desso is collaborating with Reststoffenunie, an association of drinking water companies in the Netherlands, to upcycle re-engineered calcium carbonate (chalk) from local drinking water companies such as Brabant Water and WML (Water Maatschappij Limburg). The chalk is positively defined in accordance with C2C criteria and is used for the production of Desso’s carpet tiles with EcoBase backing, which is C2C Silver certified and 100% recyclable in Desso’s own production process.
The world is slowly finding itself without the resources that it needs, and therefore the construction materials that are being used need to be reduced to help the environmental impact. Rather than send all of the leftover materials, as well as materials that are from the demolition and excavation process, as well as the construction process, this industry is turning towards recycling the reusable materials.
Cuddy Recycling Ltd, a start-up firm supported by the Welsh government, is establishing a wood, plasterboard and gypsum recycling centre in South Wales. The centre, which represents an investment on £1.2 million, will be the first of its kind in the area and will create 22 jobs.
The facility will process and recycle demolition aggregates from construction and demolition projects in Wales, in addition to waste timber and plasterboard, which will be sourced from the construction sector and civil amenity sites. The aggregates will be sorted for reuse within the construction industry and waste timber will be used for biomass fuel, panel board manufacture and animal bedding. The plasterboard will be reused in plasterboard manufacture where possible and the gypsum will be recycled as a soil conditioner for application in the agricultural industry. It may also be used as a cement additive.
Michael Hensel created uncompromisingly industrial furniture from used escalator steps.
Third prize went to Laura Jungmann, Monika Nickel, Cornelius Reer and Matthias Blindow for their clever refurbishing reinterpretations of found objects such as chairs, tables and vessels.
An EU-funded research project has laid the foundations for change – it is promoting concrete, ceramics, gypsum and plastics recycling around Europe.
Recycling and re-using parts from old buildings makes sense – it creates less waste, makes construction cheaper and reduces the use of raw resources (more than 50% of all materials extracted from the earth are currently transformed into construction materials and products).
A group of University of Toledo students and a passionate professor took recycling to the next level this past summer by building a boat made entirely out of repurposed materials.Initially, this was a printmaking class, but Arturo Rodriguez, an associate professor of art and overseer of this project, said it also involved a lot of sculptural aspects as well.
New regulations could soon restrict the demolition of older Vancouver homes and require at least 75 per cent of the waste material be recycled or reused. (CBC)
The City of Vancouver could soon ban the demolition of homes built before 1940, and require anyone planning to knock one down to deconstruct it piece by piece and sort the materials for recycling.The proposal follows increasing concerns about the demolition of heritage and character homes in Vancouver.
On average three homes are demolished in Vancouver everyday, of which 40 per cent are pre-1940s homes that give many neighbourhoods their character.The proposed regulation would require recycling or reuse of 75 per cent of the waste from a pre-1940s home and 90 per cent of the waste from one which has been identified as a character home.
At Fallen Furniture we design distinctive pieces of vintage aviation furniture and art from original reclaimed aircraft parts, to create beautiful and unique masterpieces.
The Mobile Fab device is a plastic recycler that, using a series of pumps, tubes and wires, grinds No.5 plastic into a fine powder, which is fed into the 3D printer attached to the front of the bike. Passersby are invited to bring pieces of discarded polypropylene, the only plastic Fabraft can handle for the moment, to their bike. After a couple of hours, processing and printing the material, they’re rewarded with such items as a Fabraft medallion, to be inserted into the spokes of their own bicycles. Best of all, there’s no charge, just plastic.
WasteCap has more than twelve years of experience in training building professionals on reuse and recycling of materials. The BMRA provides increasing opportunities for the recovery and reuse of building materials in an environmentally sound and financially sustainable way. Attendees will learn the necessary skills to develop, manage, monitor, document and promote a successful deconstruction project and take away the eight steps to create and manage a successful project from beginning to end, says WasteCap.
More information on both courses is available at www.wastecap.org/training.
Photo: Jay Young, The Evansville Courier & Press via Associated Press
Deconstruction is new to the Twin Cities, and one Minneapolis social enterprise called Better Futures Minnesota is leading the charge. It offers work crews for hire to provide deconstruction services, property maintenance, appliance recycling, groundskeeping and more. But off the clock, the men who work at Better Futures also get help with housing, healing and recovery, and personal coaching — helping these formerly incarcerated or homeless men turn their lives around.
A demolition boom is upon us, and we have a choice as a community. Demolish and send it to the dump, or deconstruct for less money, less waste and more green jobs.
The GSC, according to material provided by Team Gemini, will provide its own electricity, generating the equivalent of what would be needed to power 30,000 homes. It will power the industrial park and the COR3 facility, which will serve as the main collection point for municipal solid waste and extract from the weekly waste flow 5,000 tons of recyclables — roughly a quarter of what goes into the landfill now.
The long-term plan of the project is to eventually collect all incoming waste and to tap into the landfill itself to reclaim already buried material.
“This will redirect a lot of trash from the landfill” said Franklin County Commissioner John O’Grady. “This will help the community for generations to come.”
The glowing fish are constructed from jagged scales of ColorCore formica mounted on a wireframe and are an extension of a series of similar lights first built between 1984 and 1986. The story goes that while working on a commission for Formica back in the 80s Gehry dropped a piece of ColorCore which shattered, inspiring the idea of fish scales.
Gypsum Agri-Cycle, Inc. can help your business reduce drywall waste disposal costs. What used to be an almost insignificant cost has become significant in our region. Drywall waste makes up approximately 25% of weight volume in landfills and the construction industry makes up approximately 64% of the gypsum waste in North America. With increasing environmental concerns, it may not be long before your construction waste will no longer be welcome at landfills and tipping costs will surge.
Partnering with Gypsum Agri-Cycle, Inc. will demonstrate your commitment to the environment and help you become a leader of environmental efforts in the housing industry. Build your business; saving money on disposal costs and building your environmental reputation!
Drywall waste is coming from the following states:
Vermont, Massechusetts, New Jersey, Virginia, Deleware, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., West Virgina, and Maryland.
We have the capability of shipping mined gypsum and reclaimed gypsum globally!
I post on ship breaking and boat disposal because I am concerned about how much maritime waste is being produced and ignored. Fiberglass boats are everywhere. And they don’t breakdown.
Because composite vessels are highly durable, end-of-life (EOL) disposal has not so far been a major issue. Many of the numerous glassfibre boats produced in the early years still exist. But the time will come – is coming – when these craft reach the end of their lives and will have to be disposed of.
The present trickle of EOL disposals is likely to become a ‘tsunami’ as successive generations of craft reach the end. Unlike metal and wooden boats, which are made of recyclable or naturally degrading materials, fibreglass craft leave an enduring trace on the environment …
The proposed legislation would bar ships flying European Union flags from “beaching” old ships, that is, steaming them onto shore, where they are dismantled by hand at informal shipyards. The low-cost, ship-scrapping industry of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh is a multibillion-dollar business employing about a million workers, and the three countries account for more than 70% of the global ship-recycling industry.
The European Parliament has approved measures that would ban beaching and fine EU shipowners for violations. Advocacy groups have criticized beaching for its poor safety and environmental record, preferring that ship breaking, as the broader vessel-recycling industry is known, be conducted in dry dock or at piers so that waters aren’t exposed to toxic spills.
By: SWR Staff
The European Union’s Science for Environment Policy publication has published a May 2013 study by Portuguese researchers that has projected huge environmental benefits from recycling construction and demolition waste.
Even after accounting for the impacts of the recycling process itself, the researchers found that over a standard 60-year lifespan, the recycling plant would likely produce more than 135,000 tonnes of CO2. However, their research found that the same plant would have prevented emissions of about 1.4 million tonnes over the same period, more than ten times what it produced.
Coelho, A. & de Brito, J.’s research paper, Environmental analysis of a construction and demolition waste recycling plant in Portugal – Part I: Energy consumption and CO2 emissions.
The research results predicted that the plant wasto use an amount of energy equivalent to more than 71,000 tonnes, but it conserved 563,000 tonnes, approximately eight times as much.
The researchers noted that these environmental benefits can only come to be, however, if the output materials produced by the recycling facility are effectively sent out and used for the fabrication of new products (especially construction related ones).
Read the entire article via Portugal study finds enviro benefits from recycling construction, demo waste.
Environment Commissioner Janez Poto?nik said: “Although the ship recycling sector has improved its practices, many facilities continue to operate under conditions that are dangerous and damaging. This proposal aims to ensure that our old ships are recycled in a way that respects the health of workers as well as the environment. It is a clear signal to invest urgently in upgrading recycling facilities.” The new rules, which will take the form of a Regulation, propose a system of survey, certification and authorization for large commercial seagoing vessels that fly the flag of an EU Member State, covering their whole life cycle from construction to operation and recycling.
Concrete Mode is a Thailand-based company that creates incredibly sturdy totes, bags and pencil cases the discarded bags used to transport concrete. Concrete is the most consumed man-made material on earth and more than half of all the world’s concrete consumption occurs in Asia. Besides immense CO2 emissions, concrete consumption produces waste when transporting it via bags. Instead of these bags ending up in landfill, Concrete Mode’s founders believe these bags should be repurposed into useful, fun, and fashionable items. After a successful Kickstarter campaign earlier this year, they’ve been at work producing the bags and have even tested out a prototype umbrella from the salvaged fabric.
Folklore is a beautiful new shop right up our street – literally. It may be a little difficult to find at first, wedged in between two Gill Wing stores and boasting an antique sign which reads 193 BERWIC rather than Folklore.
On my second visit I almost got lost, failing to notice it due to its inconspicuous shop front. However, after spotting the paper and crotchet lampshades in the window I was reminded why it had initially caught my eye.
They later explained that they had kept the old sign allowing it to add to the character of the shop while corresponding with their philosophy of sustainability.
Danielle Reid and her husband Rob opened the shop on Islington’s trendy Upper Street 1 month ago. The couple started the company, based on the belief that better living is possible through design. They curate a selection of pieces by a mix of designers, makers and craftsmen and try to source locally where possible.
Everything inside Folklore is either handmade, antique or made from recycled or found materials. Others are easily recyclable at the end of their life. All are made in an environmentally mindful way. Danielle strongly believes that ecology and ethics are integral to design and there is a theme throughout the shop which emphasises the importance of being environmentally mindful.
As recycling becomes more mainstream and becomes the norm, recycled goods and furniture are becoming more beautiful in their own right. Folklore paves the way for sustainable living and proves that recycling can be elegant by exploring diverse styles and uses of materials.
Thanks friend, you will be missed.
BioCycle founder Jerry Goldstein dies at 81
By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling
Composting, recycling and sustainability pioneer Jerome “Jerry” Goldstein, founder of JG Press, publisher of BioCycle and In Business, died May 17.
Goldstein founded Compost Science, which became BioCycle in 1960 and was also the author of numerous books, including “How To Manage A Company Ecologically,” “Garbage As You Like It,” “Sensible Sludge,” and “How To Start A Family Business and Make It Work.”
From Goldstein’s first editorial, republished in his obituary in BioCycle: “Our editorial objective is to set up a central medium — a clearinghouse — for valuable information for municipal and industrial officials responsible for the treatment and disposal of organic waste materials … We are publishers and editors thoroughly convinced that there is a need to conserve this country’s as well as the world’s natural resources. We believe that converting municipal and industrial organic wastes into useful products would be an effective step forward in a long-range conservation program. And along with the conservation benefits is an aspect equally as important — that of developing a treatment process that does not create subsequent problems in water or air pollution.”
The business has been at the Taylor St location for seven years but with costs rising, a general slowdown in the building industry and a scarcity of stock, owners Peter Robertson, daughter, Luka and son Rookie have decided to get out while they are ahead.
“It’s much harder to get materials these days,” Luka Robertson said.
“It’s quicker for demolishers to knock buildings over and crush it all up and put it in the landfill than it is to deconstruct it and sell it.”
On top of all this, the Robertsons failed to renegotiate a new lease with their landlord.
“It just got complicated and messy,” Ms Robertson said.
John Majercak, the executive director of the Center for Ecotechnology opened the Restore Home Improvement Center as a way to stop building materials from ending up in landfills. He found people eager to donate perfectly good cabinets, doors , windows, lighting fixtures and plumbing that they no longer wanted, or had a use for. And they found a market for the used building supplies in do-it-yourselfers on a tight budget..