Concreting Solutions – Making Concrete More Sustainable

Concrete is one of the most ubiquitous building materials in the world, but it is also among the most carbon-intensive. That is why when 196 parties signed on to The Paris Agreement at the end of 2015, attention focused on finding low-emission paths to concrete production.

As a result, concrete producers around the globe have been experimenting with a range of new technologies to help lower its embodied carbon footprint. Some have introduced a carbon-star rating system that provides a simple way to measure, report and specify the specific CO2 intensity of concrete mixes. Others have created geopolymer concretes, which use slag and fly ash or natural pozzolans Mandurah Concreting Solutions to replace the cement in traditional concrete recipes without adding much extra gypsum. The concrete industry has also been working on reducing its overall energy demand by using alternative sources of heat, such as waste biomass fuels, and developing innovative ways to recycle the material at the end of its lifecycle.

Moreover, construction professionals can play a crucial role in helping to make concrete more sustainable by changing their approaches to design, specification and construction. For example, FPInnovations has been working with concrete manufacturers to develop wood pulp fibres that can be used in concrete recipes. Such a solution would reduce the amount of concrete needed, while simultaneously cutting its emissions and boosting its whole-life performance.

Then there are innovations like self-healing bio-concrete, which uses a type of bacteria that fills cracks with concrete and closes them. The current formulations have a production cost that is almost twice as high as regular concrete, due to the need for calcium lactate as a nutrient for the bacteria (European Patent Office). However, active research is underway to find alternatives that could lower the cost to match or even come closer to conventional concrete.

As a full-service testing lab, Concreting Solutions is committed to supporting the efforts of builders and designers by providing them with timely inspection services. Our professional engineers and technicians are ACI, AWS and NICET accredited with years of experience and in-depth knowledge of a wide range of materials. Our state-of-the-art laboratory can provide the precise testing services required by your project to ensure its success.