Is it time to change our use of plastic in construction?
January 29, 2021
As questions continue to be asked about the suitability and safety of existing building materials is it time, not only to outlaw the use...
January 25, 2021
Changing Streams has partnered with Arup’s Liverpool office to help drive forward its mission to reduce the use of plastic across the construction industry.
The partnership will bring together Arup’s sustainability experts and Changing Stream’s researchers to identify where sustainable plastic-free alternatives can be used in the construction industry’s supply chain to help the sector tackle its plastic problem. The teams will also explore circular economy principles to ensure that existing materials are being repurposed and reused when plastic use is unavoidable, reducing the amount of new plastics going into the system.
The construction sector is the second largest producer of plastic waste in the UK, after packaging. It is estimated the building trade generates 50,000 tonnes of plastic waste each year, 40% of which is sent to landfill.
Established by building entrepreneur Neal Maxwell, in partnership with The University of Liverpool, Changing Streams aims to reduce the use of plastics in buildings and throughout the built environment supply chain.
Neal Maxwell, founder of Changing Streams, said: “Arup shares our vision for creating a better world for future generations, and we are delighted to have them on-board. We are already discussing a series of exciting joint research projects which will help catapult Changing Streams into the next phase and hugely accelerate our growth and impact on the industry”.
Arup Liverpool will also support Changing Streams’ new workshop programmes, which focus on implementing behavioural and educational changes across the sector. They aim to help people understand the problems associated with the current and future forecasts of the use of plastic, and recognise how they can help make a difference.
Garry Banks, Arup’s Liverpool Office Leader, said: “Changing Streams is such an important initiative within the construction sector where the use of plastic has been embedded into building processes and products for many years. More research is needed to identify non-plastic alternatives and to find ways of minimising use where plastic cannot be eradicated. We hope that through working in partnership with the Changing Streams team, we can help support this research.”
Arup works with organisations including the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development to innovate and accelerate new approaches and business models to help the world decarbonise. The firm is also working with The Resilience Shift and the Global Resilient Cities Network to enhance the resilience of cities and communities to increasing shocks and stresses resulting from climate change, including drought, water scarcity and food supply disruption.
Changing Streams wishes to engage with companies and individuals who are passionate about bringing about positive transformations to make the world healthier. The website provides information about how anyone can contribute by either becoming a member or by making a donation to strengthen the research it can conduct.