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March 12th, 2015
A better understanding of how we use established construction materials is helping to shape the growing metal recycling industry across the world. As the construction industry continues to answer calls for green, eco-friendly building techniques, steel recycling in particular is emerging as a clear favourite.
Metal recycling in the UK is now worth £5.6 billion. A UK workforce of around 8,000 professionals now adds to the 400 million tonne worldwide industry. The EU has reported that CO2 emissions have been cut by around 200 million tonnes a year since nations started to proactively recycle steel.
While almost everything around us can be recycled, some materials are more suited to the process than others. The natural state of steel provides many environmental benefits which other metals do not deliver. Steel is classed as one of the most suitable metals for recycling as its condition requires little maintenance and it can be reused an infinite amount of times.
As a building material, steel provides longevity, durability and strength that is unmatched by alternatives – steel frames will likely outlive the building itself.
Recycling steel eliminates the huge amount of energy, waste and emissions when extracting the iron ore, coal and limestone used for creating the material. For example, creating a steel can from recycled material uses 75% less energy than producing items from its raw form. Due to its ability to be recycled time and time again without compromising quality, reusing current amounts in circulation can conserve precious fossil fuels that are depleting at an unsustainable rate.
Steel is now North America’s leading recycled material, while the metal recycling industry in the UK adds more to the economy than the automobile and aerospace industries combined; boasting a larger workforce which is expanding year-on-year. With affiliate industries in China and India also expanding, those associated with the practice are likely to be confident in worldwide export markets over the coming years.
This boom in steel recycling coincides with a growing worldwide eco-consciousness. In May 2014, dedicated construction website, Careerstructure.com, reported the popularity of eco structures in the UK as firms started to find green, sustainable structures. With Britain’s first eco town in Oxfordshire currently under construction, nations are looking to Britain to create more sustainable settlements.
Secretary of State for Business and Innovation, Vince Cable, said: “The UK has a strong competitive edge in building modern and environmentally friendly cities, through our world-class expertise in architecture, consultancy, design, IT and engineering.”
Clement has always been an avid supporter of steel and metal recycling. From our robust W20 windows for larger commercial and public buildings to the elegant EB range of steel windows for new builds and residential replacement projects, all Clement products display the versatility of steel as a building material and how it can be transformed into stunning examples of fenestration.
Steel enables our expert team to design individual premium products to various specifications. We are proud to highlight that all Clement’s highly recommended replacement steel windows are created entirely from recycled steel and we are devoted to remaining an environmentally friendly business. To find out more about the business and our products, please call us on 01428 643393 or fill out our short online request form. We look forward to hearing from you.