Steel for a Greener World

Sep 2011

In the current world and economy, more and more people are seeking greener alternatives for everything from the food they eat to vehicles they drive.  And the choices both consumers and builders make when constructing new buildings or remodeling old spaces is no different. Builders and consumers are looking for materials that will be long lasting, yet leave less of an imprint on the environment.  And choosing US steel allows both those needs to be met.

What Gives US Steel the Green Advantage:

1.  Longevity

When compared to the strength to weight ratios of other building materials, steel wins by far.  It will not break, rot or deteriorate like other materials.  Steel does not off-gas toxins during its long lifespan.  And it requires little to no maintenance.  That equals less waste in landfills and less toxins in our environment over the life of those structures.  The steel from buildings that are dismantled have such longevity that they can be used again in new structures.  Those that cannot be reused can be recycled.

2.  Recyclable

Should steel used in a structure outlive its design concept or original purpose, that steel can be recycled.  Steel is the most recycled and recyclable material in the United States.  It can be recycled over and over again into new steel products.  Powerbilt buildings, for example, are made with 80% recycled steel.  And by-products of producing steel can be used in things like road maintenance.

3.  Design Flexibility

Steel structures allow for design flexibility that structures constructed from other materials do not.  That means that more energy efficient elements can be incorporated by architects than if limited to only traditional building concepts.  Steel building frames offer lots of space for easy insulation, since less beams and studs are required.  And Powerbilt’s Energy Star Compliant Green Building even offers color options to reflect heat.

4.  Resources to Transport

In this country, purchasing US steel buildings or products means that less resources were used to ship those materials.  That steel did not guzzle fossil fuels to cross an ocean.  It was made close to home.

5.  Proactive Industry

In an era when many industries have been reluctant to make more environmentally conscious decisions, the US steel industry has been proactive in adapting more energy efficient practices that reduce greenhouse gases.  Powerbilt, for example, operates under the Enivornmental Protection Agency’s aggressive Energy Star guidelines.  That means that you can be confident that your steel buildings are not only designed to help you be a better steward of the environment, but were manufactured under guidelines that respect it.


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