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Waste food waste to build future sustainable cities | Upload Recycling

Food Waste To Build Future Sustainable Cities

by: Moon Apple
food waste to build future sustainable cities | Upload

Construction is a big source of waste and pollution. The construction industry accounts for an enormous amount of CO2 and waste. Much of this waste can be attributed to the linear economy that runs the industry, built on a 'take, make, waste' model, tapping raw resources, and recycling little. 

Food Waste: Move To A Circular Economy

In fact, an estimated 90 percent of the industry's waste comes from the demolition of old buildings, and 10 percent is from the construction of new buildings.  

Facing this issue, the engineering firm Arup is advocating that the industry move to a circular economy, or "a continual feedback loop that aims to recycle as much as possible, throw away as little as possible, and use as few raw resources as possible," according to Fast Company. And the way they think this can happen is by tapping another major waste stream for material: food waste.
pine apples 

Half Of All The Food Produced In The World Ends Up As Waste 

About half of all the food produced in the world ends up in the trash, accounting for about 60 million tons of food. Applying circular thinking to this issue in conjunction with construction waste could mean pouring less produce into landfills while simultaneously making building materials recyclable to keep construction waste out of dumps. Meanwhile, some materials could be grown like crops, eliminating excess waste. In their report The Urban Bio Loop, the engineering firm sees our future buildings made from pineapples, potatoes, mushrooms, corn, oranges, bananas, and more. 

Recommended: Dumpster Diving: Hobby Which Combats Food Waste

"It is well known that the so-called 'business as usual' scenario does not represent a viable option for a sustainable future and that different development models have to be identified for our society to continue growing and prospering in the future," Arup writes in its report. "The construction industry must reflect this urgency of change–probably more than others. In fact, it is still permeated by several detrimental factors such as the use of high impact materials, non-reversible building solutions, low-efficiency processes, and manufacturing."

Several companies and designers are already experimenting with food-based materials for construction. MoMA used 10,000 bricks constructed from mushrooms to build an experimental tower. The startup that grew the materials, Ecovative, said the bricks could be tailored to different densities and substitute particleboard and Styrofoam for insulation. In Germany, Wood K Plus has been experimenting with a building material made from corn cobs, strong, insulating, and inexpensive. The boards could be used for lightweight walls, doors, and furniture. 
cluster of mushrooms

Then there's the company Enviroboard, which is making walls from compressed wheat; Leoxx, which is making biodegradable textiles and carpets from banana plants; Organoids, which is making acoustic panels from a blend of seeds, stalks, and leaves; Materia, which is creating a cork substitute out of potato peels, which is fire resistant, water repellent, and lightweight, and can be used for acoustic and thermal insulation.
Bricks from Mycelium, 3 holes, sky
The Hy-Fi Pavillon, designed by New York-based firm The Living, is built from bricks that mix corn stalks and mushroom mycelium. The bricks can be grown in 5 days and are completely organic and can be composted into fertilizer when no longer needed.

Recommended: Recycling Solid Waste: You Can Make A Difference

But it doesn't stop there. The Thai company Kokoboard uses waste material from sunflower crops to produce non-toxic, high-strength boards used for floors, ceilings, and internal walls. And in the leather-replacement space, Ananas Anam, a British start-up, uses pineapples to make upholster-worthy leather substitutes, and Orange Fibre, a start-up in Italy, weaves sustainable fabrics the cellulose fibbers of citrus peels, which could also be used for upholstery. 

Before you go!

Recommended: Solar Panel Recycling: Photovoltaics Rebirth

Like to write your article about food waste?
Send your writing & scribble with a photo to [email protected], and we will write an interesting article based on your input.

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I'm interested in everything that has to do with sustainability. My house is solar powered and I have my own water supply and filtering system.  I grow my own vegetables and fruit. Most of the time I go on the road by bicycle and for long distances I use public transport.

I'm interested in everything that has to do with sustainability. My house is solar powered and I have my own water supply and filtering system.  I grow my own vegetables and fruit. Most of the time I go on the road by bicycle and for long distances I use public transport.

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Food Waste To Build Future Sustainable Cities

Construction is a big source of waste and pollution. The construction industry accounts for an enormous amount of CO2 and waste. Much of this waste can be attributed to the linear economy that runs the industry, built on a 'take, make, waste' model, tapping raw resources, and recycling little.  Food Waste: Move To A Circular Economy In fact, an estimated 90 percent of the industry's waste comes from the demolition of old buildings, and 10 percent is from the construction of new buildings.   Facing this issue, the engineering firm Arup is advocating that the industry move to a circular economy, or "a continual feedback loop that aims to recycle as much as possible, throw away as little as possible, and use as few raw resources as possible," according to Fast Company. And the way they think this can happen is by tapping another major waste stream for material: food waste.   Half Of All The Food Produced In The World Ends Up As Waste  About half of all the food produced in the world ends up in the trash, accounting for about 60 million tons of food. Applying circular thinking to this issue in conjunction with construction waste could mean pouring less produce into landfills while simultaneously making building materials recyclable to keep construction waste out of dumps. Meanwhile, some materials could be grown like crops, eliminating excess waste. In their report The Urban Bio Loop, the engineering firm sees our future buildings made from pineapples, potatoes, mushrooms, corn, oranges, bananas, and more.  Recommended:  Dumpster Diving: Hobby Which Combats Food Waste "It is well known that the so-called 'business as usual' scenario does not represent a viable option for a sustainable future and that different development models have to be identified for our society to continue growing and prospering in the future," Arup writes in its report. "The construction industry must reflect this urgency of change–probably more than others. In fact, it is still permeated by several detrimental factors such as the use of high impact materials, non-reversible building solutions, low-efficiency processes, and manufacturing." Several companies and designers are already experimenting with food-based materials for construction. MoMA used 10,000 bricks constructed from mushrooms to build an experimental tower.  The startup that grew the materials, Ecovative, said the bricks could be tailored to different densities and substitute particleboard and Styrofoam for insulation. In Germany, Wood K Plus has been experimenting with a building material made from corn cobs, strong, insulating, and inexpensive. The boards could be used for lightweight walls, doors, and furniture.  Then there's the company Enviroboard, which is making walls from compressed wheat; Leoxx, which is making biodegradable textiles and carpets from banana plants; Organoids, which is making acoustic panels from a blend of seeds, stalks, and leaves; Materia, which is creating a cork substitute out of potato peels, which is fire resistant, water repellent, and lightweight, and can be used for acoustic and thermal insulation. The Hy-Fi Pavillon, designed by New York-based firm The Living, is built from bricks that mix corn stalks and mushroom mycelium. The bricks can be grown in 5 days and are completely organic and can be composted into fertilizer when no longer needed. Recommended:  Recycling Solid Waste: You Can Make A Difference But it doesn't stop there. The Thai company Kokoboard uses waste material from sunflower crops to produce non-toxic, high-strength boards used for floors, ceilings, and internal walls. And in the leather-replacement space, Ananas Anam, a British start-up, uses pineapples to make upholster-worthy leather substitutes, and Orange Fibre, a start-up in Italy, weaves sustainable fabrics the cellulose fibbers of citrus peels, which could also be used for upholstery.  Before you go! Recommended:  Solar Panel Recycling: Photovoltaics Rebirth Like to write your article about food waste? Send your writing & scribble with a photo to  [email protected] , and we will write an interesting article based on your input.
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