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Environmental awareness by structural engineer Stephen Morley

Environmental awareness is growing.

A surprising amount of recycling takes place on almost every site today. Until recently there was a lack of awareness in seeing the value in what was carted away for landfill. Economics and a new focus on sustainable construction has changed all that. Now soils are retained, improved or cleaned and capped instead of being sent to the tip. New uses are found for by-products, such as blast furnace and power station waste, which is used in concrete.

Elsewhere glass is used in insulation and steel columns and beams are melted down and new components made - although we should try and find new uses for them in their original state.

We do well with bricks; in fact older bricks have a greater value and you can’t imagine crushing them down and heating them back up to form blocks.

We’ve made a good start with recycling but we need to raise the bar further if we want environmental awareness.

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