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Environmentally Friendly Substitute for Cement

Posted Nov 11 2010 11:57am
This month’s Green Moms Carnival is about cement. If you are like me, you never had a thought to cement. One of the Green Moms, Lisa of Retro Housewife Goes Green , lives near a cement plant in Oklahoma. She is hosting this month’s carnival and has had plenty of knowledge and experience with cement plants.

Did you know that cement manufacturing is the number two source of CO2 in the atmosphere? Only vehicles produce more CO2. Most of the CO2 production comes from burning coal to make cement. It is released in several of the chemical reactions that occur in making cement.

Concrete is the most common building material used on earth. Concrete contains cement plus sand or gravel. Personally, I did not even know they were different!  The demand for cement is expected to be huge in coming decades.

Cement production is one of the most energy intensive of all industrial manufacturing processes. Cement production takes about six million Btus for every ton of cement

Besides CO2 both cement and concrete production generate huge quantities of dust and other chemical pollutants like sulfur dioxide and nitrous oxide. Water pollution is also a concern during the production of cement. To minimize the environmental impact of cement manufacturing, we need to find alternative materials that are environmentally friendly.

I learned about FilterPave Porous Pavement at an environmental conference recently. It can be used for sidewalks, driveways, parking lots and other similar structures instead of cement. It is porous and allows rain to sink in rather than run off into storm sewers. An average-size parking lot and one inch of rain can produce 27,000 gallons of storm water runoff. With modern rampant development, many parking lots and lots of rain hitting impervious cement equals flooding. With FilterPave, the risk of flooding is much less.

It is made with recycled glass, granite, and recycled plastic. Up to 90 glass bottles are ground to make one square foot of pavement. The glass is processed to have rounded edges plus it is considered safe for plants and marine life. It comes in several colors and it requires almost 100% less de-icing materials.  We need more environmentally friendly alternatives to cement. Learn more about cement by reading the other blogs at Green Moms Carnival.  I know I certainly learned at lot about a substance that I took for granted.
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