Keep it green!
Construction companies like Rocket Projects are responsible for building the future, and part of that responsibility involves respecting our planet and its resources by making a conscious effort to use sustainable products and building techniques. As the situation with the environment becomes more of an issue, new concepts and products are being introduced all the time in an effort to make a difference. Here are some of our favourites:
Recycled steel: This can be used in commercial and residential projects, and reduce the energy needed to create steel beams by 75%. To build a 2000 square foot house, it would require no more than 6 cars' worth of recycled steel.
Insulated concrete forms: A form of reinforced concrete made with rigid insulation, which saves 20% of the energy consumed by wooden-framed buildings.
Eico paint: This paint has one of the lowest VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) ratings of any paint sold in the UK. The paints are manufactured using 100% acrylic which prevents blistering, cracking and permits colour retention. The same paints can therefore be applied both indoor and out. Paints are manufactured in Iceland using 100% geothermal and hydropower. Eico paints have been used on numerous hospital and school projects because they are APEO-free, so are the ideal choice for allergy and asthma sufferers. They are designed for longevity and durability, and all finishes can be washed over 2000 times.
Biofa paint: This company specialises in making paints and oils from natural ingredients. They focus on products that are good for human health, and good for the environment, so every single one of their products are free from harmful isothiasolinone chemicals.
Straw bales: This is a materials being used more and more in construction, especially in self-build projects that are focusing on reducing the environmental impact of the build. Straw bales bond well to stucco and plaster walls, and provide good insulation. They can last thousands of years if constructed properly, and around 300 are needed to build an average-sized home.
Waste disposal: Plasterboard can now be recycled and turned into entirely new plasterboard, in a closed production loop, which saves a huge amount of energy. Here at Rocket Projects, we ensure our waste is dealt with in the most eco-friendly way possible, by using companies with green credentials. Carpet tiles are also recycled, and there are many more sustainable materials that can now be used as an alternative, including Screed flooring, which is fast becoming a popular choice for our clients. We're proud to say that we recycled 93% of the waste from our sites last year.
LED lighting: This is such an easy way to make your refurbishment more eco-friendly, and save you money! LEDs give out the same amount of light as traditional fluorescent bulbs, but use far less power, therefore saving on electricity costs, and limiting your company's power consumption, which in turn reduces your carbon footprint.
Vacuum insulation panel: 1 inch panels that provide as much as 7x the insulation of traditional products. They are currently only available for the commercial refrigeration industry. but it could be very useful in other industries. The biggest current installation problem is the panel's fragile surface, which must be encased in a protective covering.
Cardboard office furniture: Flute Office have designed a revolutionary range of office furniture, by working with cardboard engineers and designers. They released a range of 20 desks, storage units and tables, following the shift in public perception that cardboard is a temporary material, and had good feedback. High-grade corrugated board production and clever design & engineering makes sure the products meet strict EU standards.
Case Study: Zaha Hadid Architects to build the world's first carbon-neutral all-wood football stadium.
A 5000-seat stadium built entirely from wood has been commissioned, and will be designed by the London-based firm set up by the late British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid. The stadium will be used by Forest Green Rovers, a football team based in Gloucestershire, and is part of a proposal that includes a £100m nature reserve, public transport hub and the restoration of the nearby Stroudwater canal.
The EcoPark development aims to be carbon neutral by generating its own energy onsite, and one half of the park will be dedicated to new sporting facilities. Training pitches and a sports science hub will accompany the new stadium, and the other half of the park will operate as a green technology business park.
Wood has been chosen first and foremost because it’s a natural material and has a very low carbon content. The design incorporates an undulating bowl made up of timber slats, with seats positioned to provide uninterrupted views of the pitch from every single seat.
Rocket Projects is introducing a new social and environmental strategy in 2017, centred around supporting charities involved with sustainability and the construction industry. We will also be continuing to make the effort to work with suppliers who care about our planet as much as we do, and who use products that impact the environment as little as possible, as well as investing in new concepts like the ones detailed in this blog. Keep an eye out on our Twitter, Instagram & Facebook feeds for more information and updates!