Reduction of environmental damage in the construction industry using scrap-tire-derived materials

Nome: Hachemi Djadouni
Título do Projeto: Reduction of environmental damage in the construction industry using scrap-tire-derived materials
Âmbito: Negócio e Inovação
Breve Descrição: The construction industry sector is responsible for high quantities of energy consumption, solid waste generation, global greenhouse gas emission, external and internal pollution, and significant environmental damage and resource depletion due to the use of conventional materials such as cement, sand and gravel. In order to overcome the increasing concern of today’s resource depletion and to address environmental considerations, recycled materials can be used as alternatives to conventional materials in order to improve sustainability in the construction industry. Scrap tire-derived materials have been considered as a suitable alternative to conventional sand and gravel backfill materials for retaining structures as they offer benefits from their significantly lower unit weight, reductions in the cost of materials and construction, and because they utilize a common and potentially hazardous waste material. Despite the geotechnical and economic advantages of this use, the principles of sustainability should be applied to ensure that design and construction options are compared and evaluated in terms of energy efficiency, greenhouse gas emissions and environmental damages for the full design life of the structure. This project aims to encourage sustainable development in the construction industry by calculating sustainability components such as energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and environmental damages for two types of retaining structures, a traditional retaining wall backfilled with sand alone and an alternative retaining wall backfilled with a sand-tire chips (STC) mixture. Life cycle assessments (LCAs) for these two construction methods were performed. Taking into account the extraction and production of the used construction materials, loading, transport and installation, the cumulative energy demand (CED) was determined for each construction method. The global warming potential (GWP), acidification potential (AP), Human Health Criteria Air-mobile, aquatic eutrophication potential, ozone depletion potential, and smog potential have been taken into account in addition to the CED. The seven environmental impact categories were calculated using the software tool, ATHENA ® Environmental Impact Estimator (ATHENA ® EIE) for Buildings v5.2.0118. The seven impact categories were reduced significantly with the use of STC mixture as retaining wall backfill. This is due to the decrease in the amounts of concrete, reinforcing steel, and fuel quantity consumed by building machines and vehicles transporting construction materials. The study concludes that in all examined impact categories alternative method provides a larger environmental benefit than the traditional method. Also, the results clearly demonstrate that the use of a mixture of sand and tire chips as a lightweight backfill material is very effective as a sustainable alternative to retaining structures.


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