Why Steel is the Greenest Building Material

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Why Steel is the Greenest Building Material

Steel is the leading building material for infrastructure, the auto industry, housing and most forms of commercial construction, and as such it’s long been providing building and construction solutions. That’s not the only thing it’s providing, however – steel is also a leader when it comes to sustainability and preparing for the next generation.

At Wasatch Steel, many of our steel products directly encourage eco-friendly practices and help promote cutting-edge eco efforts. Let’s look at some of the ways steel functions as one of the greenest building materials out there.

Eco-Friendly Materials

It takes a lot of energy and resources to produce steel, but the industry has as a whole has been great about accepting its role in creating more sustainable practices. New technologies like the electric arc furnace have helped pave the way for a greener future.

According to the World Steel Organization, the electronic arc furnace has helped cut blast furnace production, coal and limestone use by orders of magnitude. Since 1960, steel producers around the globe have reduced the energy it takes to produce a ton of steel by 60 percent.

Quality of Materials

Steel provides the perfect combination of strength and reliability plus eco-friendliness. It has a higher strength-to-weight ratio than any other building material, which means fewer resources are needed for building a steel structure as other products would require for the same structure. Steel also doesn’t burn, warp or twist, and resist moisture and pests – all of which sacrifice the structural integrity of a building. This makes steel more reliable, conserving resources and leading to major decreases in carbon emissions over time.

Recycling Steel

Another major point of separation for steel from other building materials is the way it recycles. Steel is the most recycled material on the planet, with over 650 metric tons recycled every year – more than all other building materials combined.

Steel is more than just recyclable, too. It’s recyclable without losing a single one of its properties or an ounce of quality – this means steel can be used in what’s essentially a never-ending cycle, one that will heavily reduce production waste while conserving resources. Steel recycling saves over 3,000 pounds of iron ore, 1,600 pounds of coal and 250 pounds of limestone for every 1,200 pounds of new steel production.

Want to learn more about what makes steel the greenest building product, or interested in any of our custom steel services? Speak to the experts at Wasatch Steel today.