The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has issued a report on what the state of the earth will be like in 2040 if today’s living conditions continue. Among the disasters expected to strike are devastating wildfires, extreme droughts, and massive famine. That is if there is still no collective human action to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
With that said, many countries are scrambling to remedy the damage that has been done to the planet through the many industries that aid in human development, and one of which is the construction industry.
It is one of the biggest contributors to the creation of greenhouse gases and other air pollutants. Additionally, the machinery required in this business, like excavators, require a massive amount of materials to be built, further adding to the list of why it is harmful to the environment.
Since erected infrastructures are one of the aspects considered in a country’s overall development, it should be noted that nations all over the world, from superpowers like the United States to developing countries like the Philippines, need to cut back on construction costs if true progress is to be seen.
Here are some of the steps that can be taken to reduce the environmental impact of the construction industry.
Reuse excavated materials
Perhaps one of the best ways to reduce the negative environmental impact of construction is to have excavated materials, such as soil and rocks from sites, put to alternative use by general contractors on- and off-site.
For example, soil and rock and be used in the construction of driveways within building sites. They can also be used for major infrastructure projects like road construction. This is helpful to the environment since reusing materials reduces the likelihood of surface run-off in the event of heavy rains.
Deal with harmful emissions
The presence of a general contractor on construction sites is necessary to minimize the production of harmful emissions and odors that are products of air pollution. These emissions are known to emanate from poorly maintained equipment, site toilets, as well as fire outbreaks on-site.
General contractors function to oversee the proper maintenance of excavation equipment provided by companies like Topspot Heavy Equipment. They also ensure the proper placement of fixtures in the area like site toilets being positioned away from public areas.
Dispose of waste properly
It was recorded that in 2014, the U.S. had more than 534 million tons of construction waste. Much of this was disposed of through landfills or incineration, both of which are harmful to the environment.
Instead of using these methods, the construction industry can salve, reuse, or recycle any existing materials. They can even cut down on materials known to harm the planet.
A way to reduce traffic disturbances and associated emission and fuel costs is the acceleration of existing construction projects. By creating and implementing concrete completion goals, project heads and members can stay on track.
With all these in mind, change needs to occur in the construction industry for change to be witnessed in the environment. This can only be done if those working in construction strive to follow some, if not all, of the steps above in order to decrease the negative impact of construction on the environment.