Is Aluminium Environmentally Friendly?
Aluminium: The Most Recyclable Industrial Metal
The common myth in the construction world is that aluminium is not environmentally friendly, however with such a heavy focus on the environment in recent years there is now extensive research to show otherwise.
Although there has been 1 billion tons of aluminium produced over the last 100 years, a huge 75% of this remains in use today.
We now know the majority of metals are naturally occurring and highly recyclable. In the context of construction metal materials are often associated with machinery or heavy industrial structures and this creates the assumption of a negative environmental impact. In fact, aluminium is one of the most environmentally friendly metals on earth, which is part of what makes this metal the most abundant metal element in the earth’s crust. Not only that but aluminium can be recycled infinitely to create the exact same product.
What are the other advantages of using aluminium?
Adding to the environmental value is the fact that aluminium is corrosion resistant. This eliminates the need to replace corroded or damaged metals, reducing installation revisits and material wastage. This factor is trusted and put into practice by the Empire State Building, much of which is made of aluminium.
The Empire State Building was the first architectural construction that used aluminium for such major structures. The metals strength, flexibility to accommodate complex configurations and corrosion resistance made it the leading option for the 1930 construction. It is now increasingly common for skyscrapers to swap steel window frames for aluminium, favouring the thermally efficient option.
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), one of the most widely recognised environmental building rating system in the world, endorses aluminium. The building certification programs help residential properties qualify as healthy, efficient, cost saving ‘green’ buildings.
There are a number of contributing factors that determine how a property ranks with LEED, materials used is a large contributor and aluminium helps buildings qualify for LEED’s green building status.
What are the colour options when choosing an aluminium design?
As well as having thermal efficiency on its side, aluminium presents a broad range of colour flexibility. Due to the colour and robust design being able to withstand more complicated structures than other materials, architects use aluminium for maximum creativity resources.
Polyester powder coating, the most popular frame finish for aluminium, doesn’t harm the environment as the process does not involve harmful pollutants being released into the air.
Speak to one of our sales team today on 01494 722 880 to find out more info on aluminium and its environmental benefits.
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