1. Green Manufacturing “Green manufacturing involves making manufactured products and the manufacturing process safer for the environment and human health” (Cha). What does this mean? Regarding Products The use of less toxic or nontoxic materials Post-consumer recycled content (containing materials that consumers have used and recycled) Locally sourced materials (ex. Stone and granite from local quarries rather than imported from around the globe) Products manufactured and used in renewable and energy efficient systems (ex. Gearboxes used in small-scale wind turbines) Regarding Process Improving operational energy efficiency Onsite recycling Employee occupational health and safety
2. Deconstruction “Deconstruction is the process of carefully dismantling and removing useable materials from structures for reuse, recycling, and waste management” (Cha). Examples and Advantages: Maximizes the recovery of valuable building materials for reuse and recycling Minimizes the amount of waste destined for landfills Alternative to demolition “Atypical 13,300 square foot commercial demolition project generates over 155 pounds per square foot or over 2 million pounds of waste;2 building-related projects in the U.S. alone generate an estimated 164 million tons of construction and demolition (C&D) material every year. Approximately 40%of this material is reused, recycled, or sent to waste-to-energy facilities, while 60 percent is sent to C&D landfills” Susquehanna project experimenting with “paneling,” where large sections of row houses are removed intact for disassembly and reuse. Unique architectural features such as a corner turret and radiators are retrieved from urban row houses and sold through local Susquehanna architectural salvage business. Images courtesy of OSWER Innovation Project Success Story: Deconstruction One Cleanup, Design for the Environment, and U.S. EPA. 2007. Draft Final Report, Waste and Materials Flow-Benchmark Sector Report: Beneficial Use of Secondary Materials—Construction and Demolition Materials.
3. Reuse “This subsector redistributes unwanted yet perfectly usable materials and equipment, including items from demolished structures” (Cha). Advantages Keeps goods and materials out of the waste stream Advances source reduction Preserves the ‘embodied energy’ originally used to manufacture an item Creates less air and water pollution than making a new product or recycling Saves money in purchase and disposal costs