The only thing the world consumes more than concrete is water. Construction workers lay 3 metric tones of concrete every year per person in the world. Unfortunately concrete production creates the third highest CO2 emissions in the world, following only the energy and transportation industries.
Though many environmental activists might be privy to this information, the average person might not realize how much of an environmental impact this plain, sturdy, blank slate that makes up so much of our world; (our driveways, our roads, our parking lots, our buildings etc.); is actually affecting the world around us. Concrete seems so unassuming, yet it’s essential.
A UK company, however, offers some hope in reducing the dramatic carbon footprint this essential material is leaving on our world. The David Ball Group just released a new product it’s been developing for many years. Cemfree is a new cement free concrete product. It’s as durable as traditional concrete so it’s still useable in traditional construction projects without any massive changes in application. Cemfree concrete is composed of ground steel slag instead of cement and aggregate.
Steel slag is one of the safest byproducts of metal production and has many applications across many industries and verticals.
Reasons Steel Slag Is an Ideal Cement Replacement
- Manufacturers already use slag in many portland cement based concrete mixes to make it more durable, more environmentally friendly and more cost efficient.
- Recycled steel slag’s skid resistance makes it a superior material for roadway application.
- It’s skid resistance also means it resists polishing, so it’s friction level never degrades.
- Some state regulations already require its use in roadways for these safety reasons.
Many people in the construction industry already understand that producing cement uses up a lot of energy, and even a lot of water. However, according to the David Ball Group, this cement free steel slag concrete produces a 95% smaller carbon footprint than traditional concrete, which accounts for 5% of global carbon monoxide emissions. These are significant numbers, so the release of Cemfree is an exciting advance for everyone.