The construction industry is one of the top contributors to environmental pollution, accounting for up to 40% of the total greenhouse gas emissions. It generates nearly 4% of global particle emissions and water pollution. Construction sites produce a range of contaminants, resulting in corruption, including air pollution, noise pollution, and water pollution. Pollutants and contaminants from construction sites usually have devastating effects on the environment and the health and well-being of those who work nearby.
Construction companies should adequately manage their pollution levels to reduce the adverse impact on the environment, workers, and local communities. The first step to limiting the environmental impact is conducting an environmental site assessment to evaluate the impact your construction project will likely have on the surrounding environment. It helps you take the necessary measures and make appropriate changes to your project to ensure it doesn’t negatively affect the environment. Here are practical ways that your construction company can reduce its pollution levels and safeguard the environment:
1. Minimizing waste
Construction processes generate vast amounts of waste that end up damaging the environment and putting the health of workers and residents at risk. Adopting new approaches can go a long way toward waste reduction and minimizing pollution. Consider using data intelligence and other technologies like sensors that enhance the efficiency of operations in your construction site, helping reduce waste significantly.
Additionally, you may also want to optimize your construction supplies and materials. Optimizing all site machinery can prevent them from running idle when not in use, leading to minimal air pollution while boosting construction efficiency and lower energy costs. It’s also crucial to properly segregate and filtrate construction waste to prevent hazardous compounds from polluting the water bodies and landfills.
Construction companies can also lower pollution levels by exploring different recycling options and adhering to the EPA’s Industrial Recycling Program. Proper recycling of construction waste and debris can reduce waste sent to landfills and reduce the need to process and mine new raw materials. It can help save natural resources like water, minerals, and timber, significantly minimizing pollution and carbon emissions.
Besides recycling waste, construction companies can also lower pollution levels by repurposing existing buildings instead of building new ones afresh. It will help reduce carbon emissions often associated with the delivery and production of construction materials. It could also reduce water pollution caused by silt and sediment during land clearing and lead to substantial financial savings.
Alongside repurposing existing structures, construction companies should consider using more environmentally-friendly products, tools, and materials specially designed to reduce energy consumption and waste. Instead of using cement and steel, which contribute to nearly 32% of material consumption emissions, opt for more sustainable options like bamboo, carbon-injected concrete, clay plaster, mortar, natural lumber, and straw bales.
These non-toxic building materials can help reduce your project’s impact on the environment without compromising the strength or integrity of your building. To minimize water pollution, consider powering your site machinery using clean energy, such as vegetable oil and biodiesel.
The ultimate goal of any construction company should be protecting the environment and saving limited natural resources to ensure sustainability. Implementing the tips above can help your construction company significantly reduce the pollution and waste it generates, minimizing the adverse effects on the environment and people’s health.