Green building is a term we hear more often these days. It is generally used to describe a building that is built using materials and processes which are, at least by and large, environmentally-responsible and sustainable.

The building itself, once completed, may then be high-performing and eco-friendly.

Much is being done to reduce the amount of waste which goes to landfill, and Proskips is a supporter of the Halving Waste to Landfill scheme. As much as possible, we should be putting this waste to good use, and what better way to use it than to turn it into building materials? Not only is this waste easy to come by and in plentiful supply, but it is also cheap and durable. 

Building with recycled materials is clearly the way forward, but there are some building materials made entirely from waste products which are already being used in the building industry, and by architects. These include: 

1) Cork panels 
 

It&s fair to say that, as a nation, we get through a large number of bottles of wine a year. That's a lot of wine corks. Cork is a rather useful product, and one that can be recycled and used as a building material. Indeed, architects Selencky Parsons used cork to build a 'cork-lined pod' when they designed their London studio. Ever-versatile, cork was used to make the desks, walls and floor. It certainly seems appropriate to use as many recycled wine corks in construction as possible.

2) Recycled blocks
 

Plastic recycling, or lack thereof, is an issue which makes the news on a regular basis. According to figures released by The Guardian, fewer than half the plastic bottles used in 2016 were collected to be recycled. The majority of the plastic bottles used will inevitably end up in the ocean or in landfill. With knowledge of such statistics, it is at least reassuring to know that some plastic bags and plastic bottles are being used to make building blocks.

3) Newspaper wood 
 

This may sound like a recipe for fire and disaster, but actually, newspaper wood is non-combustible and waterproof despite being made of compressed paper and cardboard. The paper and cardboard are sealed and glue is added before the recycled materials are shaped into something which resembles a log. This can then take the place of wood in construction.  

4) 'WasteBasedBricks'

Tom van Soest, co-founder of StoneCycling, is behind the creation of a building material made entirely from waste. Known as WasteBasedBricks, these bricks are made from recycled building materials from demolition sites. The waste matter is seized and completely repurposed for use in the construction of new buildings and structures.   
 
Finding ways to recycle and repurpose waste to turn it into new building materials is one of the main challenges faced by the UK construction industry.  
 
At Proskips we remain committed to working with our clients to make sure more waste is dealt with responsibly and is recycled. If you want to do more, you can find out how to reduce the amount of waste you produce here.  

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