For the architecture firm Schaum/Shieh, reuse necessarily means embracing the “background buildings” found throughout American suburbs, like the strip mall. In Houston, Schaum/Shieh retrofitted a midcentury washateria into a series of storefronts, while taking pains to highlight the craftsmanship of the original build. Courtesy Peter Molick
The building sector accounts for about a third of global fuel consumption, but its systematic energetic impact may be still greater. Because we sense the glow and hum of the machines around us, because we are accustomed to paying monthly energy bills and encouraged by the idea that adjusting the thermostat saves money—and, somehow, the planet—we may be more sensitive to running costs than to embodied energy. But, as Moe puts it in that interview, “that’s not really dealing with energy, that’s dealing with the fuel efficiency of a building, which is important, but missing the big picture.”
Source: A New Idea in Architecture? No New Buildings – Metropolis
Ugo Bardi: But what’s impressive is the growth of “construction minerals” which stands for sand, rock, cement and the like…. Think about that: 25 billion tons per year corresponds to more than three tons per person. Think of a ten kg cube [22 lbs] of rock and cement delivered to you and deposited in front of your door every morning, every day of the year.
via The concrete industry digs up 3 tons of rock per year for every person on Earth : TreeHugger.
Bradley Guy & Benjamin Holsinger teach at The Catholic University of America in the School of Architecture and Planning. They have been working on the Life Cycle Assessment Methods for Building Materials Recovery and Reuse.
They measured the carbon footprint of building material reuse. They focused their study on Community Forklift a reuse center in Edmonton, Maryland.
The above slide shows the CO2 emissions created and reduced by Community Forklift operations.
If you are a reuse center professional, start looking into carbon offset opportunities like the kind they create at Bonneville Environmental Foundation.
Because according to this chart, your reuse center could have an entirely new source of income potential in selling carbon off-sets.
-Sara Badiali RA Posting Editor
Reclamation Administration: News and Research on Building Material Waste Prevention