Reducing the carbon footprint of Europe’s construction
Sustainable construction is vital in the fight against climate change. Europe’s construction sector needs to reduce its carbon footprint in order to contribute to the fight against climate change. This requires a process of continuous innovation in the efficient use of resources that make up construction products, efficient use of energy in the production process, and improving the thermal properties of building envelopes.
AAC is a material of choice for sustainable construction. Strong but lightweight and easy-to-use, for outdoor and indoor purposes. It is made from naturally occurring materials that can be found in abundance, such as lime, fine sand, other siliceous materials, water and a small amount of aluminium powder (manufactured from a by-product of aluminium), and cement.
Thanks to continuous efficiency improvements, production of AAC demands relatively small amounts of raw materials per m3 of product, and up to a fifth as much as other construction products. There is no waste of raw materials in the production process and all production offcuts are fed back into the production circuit. The small amount of surplus material left over after curing is ground and recovered for other uses. Industrial-quality water is used and neither water nor steam are released into the environment.
AAC products contribute to the saving of energy
Compared to many other construction products, the production of AAC also has a relatively low energy intensity. The lightweight nature of AAC also saves energy during the transportation process. Moreover, AAC materials can be recycled up to 100%, reducing the need for new raw materials. This means that AAC products contribute to the saving of energy and lowering production emissions.
AAC building materials also improve the thermal properties of a building envelope. AAC’s cellular structure gives it a thermal efficiency 10 times higher than that of aggregate concrete and two to three times better than clay brick. Consequently, buildings made of AAC are warm in winter and cool in summer. Greater use of AAC in construction and renovation offers an immediate solution to cutting the energy consumption of residential and non-residential buildings across Europe.