By: Destiny Mouawad, The Pawprint, Staff Reporter
The construction industry currently sources nearly 100 billion tons of raw material each year, and because vast quantities of these materials are not used they get wasted and account for a third of our planet’s waste and nearly 40% of carbon emissions.
Reports have shown that a ton of discarded mobile phones contain “…300 times more gold than a ton of the best quality gold ore”, as well as some materials such as silver, platinum and palladium. Not to mention the billions of cables that are discarded worldwide which contain a much larger amount of reusable copper than the Earth currently has.
This has caused architects to reevaluate construction methods and whether or not we can consider a more sustainable route to avoid exploiting the Earth’s raw materials furthermore.
Architecture firms such as Rotterdam based SuperUse sourced nearly 60% of their materials second hand while building Villa Welpeloo in 2005, following them UK based architect David Baker Brown sourced 90% of his material from waste to build the Brighton Waste House, consisting of DVD’s, denim, toothbrushes and bicycle tubes.
Brown’s house is a “…live…” project to raise the public’s awareness of where their waste goes along with how it can be reused.