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PLASTIC BUILDING
PLASTIC BUILDING
RECYCLED PLASTICS IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY
HOLLY WELLES
The construction industry is one sector that continually adapts to fit societal interests and needs. Building materials change over the decades as useful innovations come out, and companies revamp their structural techniques to develop safer buildings.

As trends transform, more businesses are turning toward sustainable building materials to comply with consumer desires and LEED standards. Plus, their efforts contribute to a healthier environment.

Recycled plastic is one material catching on within the sustainable construction movement. With so much plastic already in existence, it makes sense to convert it to other uses rather than letting it sit in landfills or pollute waterways.

Several methods exist for integrating this material within commercial construction, and they provide benefits traditional materials don’t. More builders will begin using recycled plastic and other sustainable materials in the face of rising climate change.

How Does Recycled Plastic Work?

Recycled plastic is an innovative solution to construction, requiring less energy to create and releasing fewer fossil fuels into the environment. When it reaches the end of its life, builders can recycle it again, reducing the need to manufacture new plastic.

Builders should always consider the type of plastic needed for construction. All types function differently in various environments. Most of them react to changes in temperature, becoming brittle or soft, and construction workers must know which to use for the appropriate structure.

For example, one might avoid using plastic lumber on decks, as they reach high temperatures in the summer. Likewise, freezing climates can cause synthetic structures to become fragile.

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November 2019