One of the things that often comes up when discussing the future of construction is sustainability. The building sector is one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), with occupied buildings being responsible for nearly 40% of global GHG emissions, according to Architecture2030.
Sourcing and manufacturing building materials also contribute a great deal to climate change. According to a report by the United Nations Environment Programme:
Some 40-50% of total flow of raw materials in the global economy is used in the manufacturing of building products and components, adding significant amounts and energy and greenhouse gas emissions to the life cycle impact of buildings. In addition, scarcity concerns over mineral resources and especially water provide for an additional urgency to extend the narrow focus on energy use in buildings and the associated greenhouse gas emissions.
The construction industry clearly has to do better to protect the environment. This is, after all, the only planet we can live in (that we know of), so promoting sustainability will serve us — and future generations.
The good news? Construction pros are already taking steps in the right direction. Builders are now exploring sustainable construction materials to replace things like concrete, which is a major source of emissions.