Turning organic waste into building material

Can building materials be developed by upcycling food waste? In Arup’s new report titled ‘The Urban Bio-Loop’ they investigate this new paradigm…

Cover the urban bioloop Final1

Organic waste from our cities and the countryside, traditionally managed through landfill, incineration and composting could be diverted – at least in part – to become a resource for the creation of construction engineering and architecture products before being fed back in the biological cycle at the end of their service life.

‘The use of organic waste in construction would possibly allow the exploitation of its untapped value with a positive impact not only from an environmental perspective but also from a technical, social, and economic standpoint,’ researchers write in the 68-page report.

In addition to outlining the various environmental impacts of such an effort, the team also makes material recommendations. For example, they propose incorporating peanut shells into flat boards for interior partitions; utilising potato peelings and cork for thermal insulation due to their low conductivity, fire performance and water repellent capabilities; and integrating remnant fibrous materials from banana and pineapple harvesting that are both strong and lightweight into carpets and moquette.

Download the report

Source: www.proudgreenbuilding.com


 

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John Ackermann
Ilana Koegelenberg
Benjamin Brits
Paul Engelbrecht
Zeldalee Du Toit
Maxlee Marange
Timothy Sibuyi

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