Recycled Building Material is Changing the Game
Did you know that building material accounts for about one-third of all waste in the United States? That’s literally thousands of tons of garbage that ends up in landfills or incinerators. Most of this waste is recyclable. Construction companies are now learning that recycling their waste and using recycled building material can not only have a positive impact on the health of the environment, but also have a positive impact on the bottom line.
What Are the Benefits of Recycled Building Material?
- Energy savings: Recycling construction material saves massive amounts of energy by decreasing the consumption of natural resources. According to Construction Business Owner magazine, if all concrete and asphalt pavement generated in the United States was recycled, we would save the energy equivalent of 1 billion gallons of gasoline. That would be like removing more than 1 million cars from the road.
- Financial benefits: For every ton of garbage diverted from the landfill, approximately $35 in disposal costs is avoided. Collection fees must still be paid when recycling, but the fee is often less than landfilling. Sometimes recycling high-value, clean materials, such as cardboard and metal can be sold to recyclers so you’re actually making money by recycling.
- Fewer landfills: Landfills are filling up fast, which means that it’s time to think of alternative ways to dispose of our construction waste that isn’t harmful to the planet. Recycling this waste is the perfect solution because not only will it be kept out of landfills, but it will be converted into another useful product.
- Community benefits: Recycling helps the local economy. For example, it’s estimated that for every 1,000 tons of material recycled, 2 local jobs are created.
- A competitive edge: Being an environmentally friendly company is no longer a nice to have, but a must have-especially when you’re bidding for state or local government contracts. Having a robust recycling program in place will give you a competitive edge over other companies who aren’t recycling. People care about the environment and want to see that you care too.
- Reduced shipping costs: Recycled building materials are produced and prepared locally. So, instead of shipping waste to a faraway landfill, you can send it to the local recycling center. Rather than transport raw materials across the country or overseas, you can get recycled materials that are much closer to the construction site.
What Building Materials Can Be Recycled?
- Metal: Steel, aluminum, copper, are in-demand materials that can be sold to local metal scrap yards.
- Asphalt pavement: Recycling leftover asphalt is a huge energy saver. It can usually be crushed up and turned back into asphalt. In fact, there’s no limit to how much asphalt can be recycled.
- Wood: Clean and untreated wood can be re-milled, chipped, or ground to make lumber, engineered board, boiler fuel, or mulch.
- Concrete: Concrete is one of the most commonly recycled construction materials and can be reused in countless ways.
- Glass: Certain types of glass from windows and tile can be recycled depending on the geographic location of the project.
- Paper/Cardboard: Paper and cardboard can easily be recycled and repurposed.
- Gypsum: Gypsum in drywall can be recycled into many different markets such as new drywall manufacture, cement manufacture, and agriculture.
The Value of the Right Partner
Don’t forget that your 3PL partner can also help you reduce your company’s total carbon footprint. For example, they can help you reduce overall paper consumption by incorporating paperless systems for invoices, billing, customs documents, and more. They can also help you set up efficient reverse logistics operations which includes earth-friendly practices for recycling, refurbishing, or disposing of products.
Now is the time to integrate recycled building materials into your construction business. Depending on your location, there will be different types of recyclers and resources. Once you identify your local recyclers and learn what is and isn’t recyclable, then get started. You’ll save money and the environment at the same time.
Taylored Fulfillment Services is a fully integrated third-party logistics provider specializing in wholesale, retail, and direct-to-consumer unit fulfillment. Established in 1992 and headquartered in Iselin, New Jersey, they operate 1.5 million square feet of warehouse and distribution space strategically located near the nation’s busiest ports, including Los Angeles, Long Beach, and New York. Since its humble beginnings in 1992, Taylored Fulfillment Services has grown to become a national leader in distribution, fulfillment and warehousing.