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Concrete used in net zero building renovation schemes

5th October 2022 by Sean Couldwell Concrete 0 comments

Sustainable building renovations that have net zero carbon status can still contain concrete, as a constructor recently explained to

Construction design operations director Edmund Vaughan says his clients support sustainable construction and want buildings to have net zero or extremely low carbon status. He provides advice on the best materials to use for developing existing buildings.

Vaughan cites the case of one client who believed that the best material to use as part of their building reconstruction project was steel. He modelled the use of steel and, contrary to his client’s expectations, discovered that concrete was better than steel. Also, concrete was less carbon intensive than other materials considered and was the more sustainable option. Another benefit of concrete was that it was less expensive than alternative materials, all of which meant the reconstruction scheme that included concrete quickly achieved planning approval.

The building conversions on which Vaughan advises, which include concrete flooring and other structures, are also highly energy efficient.

As well as adding new concrete to a reconstructed building, existing concrete flooring, ceilings and other features that would once have been hidden are being exposed as part of a design feature. Vaughan writes:

“We encourage all our clients to retain the concrete contained in the foundations and building of an existing building. After all, that is where a high proportion of the already poured concrete – about 40% to 45% – is to be found.”

Like all building materials, concrete has some impact on the environment, but can be a key component of sustainable property construction.

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