Construction activity generates large amounts of waste materials every year. Rather than going to landfill, many of these materials can be reused in the form of recycled construction aggregates. This article explores the benefits of using recycled construction aggregates and how the industry is adopting this more sustainable approach.

What are recycled construction aggregates?
Recycled Construction Aggregates are materials produced by recycling concrete, masonry, rock, or asphalt from construction and demolition debris. Common sources include demolished concrete structures, asphalt pavements, crushed brick and concrete block. These materials are processed using crushing or other size reduction equipment to produce aggregates suitable for new construction applications. Recycled aggregates vary in quality depending on the source materials but generally meet the industry specifications for uses like road base, drainage fills, and even compacted structural fills.

Environmental benefits of using recycled aggregates
Using recycled aggregates provides significant environmental benefits by diverting waste from landfills. Concrete and asphalt recycling can reduce demand for raw stone aggregate extraction. It also conserves natural resources because recycled aggregates substitute for quarried or mined virgin aggregates. Landfill space is preserved and greenhouse gas emissions are reduced by avoiding decomposition of organic materials in landfills. Transport costs and energy use associated with extracting and hauling virgin aggregates over long distances can also be reduced when local recycled aggregates sources are used.

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