Monday, March 28, 2011

Energy Efficiency and Carbon Reduction Initiatives Dominate the Agenda of Participants in the Construction Materials Industry

Industrial wastes are now being converted into basic building raw materials. Combinations of high-performance material are increasingly utilized as suitable alternatives to conventional raw materials. The environmental aspect, juxtaposed with the possible stringent regulations of various governing councils, has boosted the development of novel materials for building construction applications.

Environmental standards and energy-efficient ratings greatly influence modern design and product selection, ensuring sizeable reductions in maintenance costs, lower carbon emissions, and optimal usage of electricity. The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) ratings and other related green building scoring systems aim to address these issues and trigger significant environmental improvements.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (, Strategic Developments in Construction Materials Industry, finds that several opportunities are available in energy reduction and environmental benefits associated with the advancements in materials technology in the construction materials sector. Specifically, the demand for multi-functional characteristics will be the key to increase sustainability in this domain.

If you are interested in a virtual brochure for this study, please send an email to Sarah Saatzer, Corporate Communications, at sarah.saatzer[.], with your full name, company name, job title, telephone number, company email address, company website, city, state and country.

"The need for higher energy efficiency for buildings is a prominent factor spearheading growth in the construction materials industry," notes Technical Insights Industry Analyst Rajaram Vijayan. "It has been observed that the consumer demand for niche buildings is on the upswing due to the energy and environmental benefits associated with them in addition to the various subsidies provided by the government."

Although market prospects look upbeat, there are some challenges curtailing forward momentum. Production costs remain high for a majority of construction materials, such as glass, cement, steel, composites and others due to the high energy requirement and numerous environmental concerns surrounding their manufacturing process. As the construction materials domain is highly cost competitive, manufacturers are engaged in developing multi-functional materials using efficient waste recycle and waste reduction techniques.

Novel designs must offer enhanced durability and aesthetics with reduced maintenance and repair costs to be successful. It is imperative for manufacturers to ratchet down lifecycle costs and provide enhanced performance with good service life. Life cycle assessment (LCA) studies have proven that energy for heating, cooling, transportation, electrical and mechanical work along with water, repair and maintenance are the prime factors responsible for reduced efficiency. Hence, optimum resource management needs to be in place for lower embodied energy of products.

"The cement industry is a high volume production industry utilizing several million tons of alternate fuels and raw materials on an annual basis, thereby accounting for high carbon dioxide emissions," says Vijayan. "Consequently, even slight alterations in the production process will entail large scale measures to reduce the environmental footprint in this industry."

Portland cement clinkers could be replaced with industrial wastes such as carbon dioxide, fly ash and others to create environmental benefits for concrete usage. However, significant research initiatives need to be undertaken to optimize the commercial viability of such substituted products within this volume- and cost-competitive industry. There is a huge potential for application of automated manufacturing processes to reduce the dependence on manual labor and control emissions in conventional production facilities.

Strategic Developments in Construction Materials Industry, a part of the Technical Insights subscription, provides an analysis of the major drivers and challenges involved in the adoption of technologies in the construction materials arena. Further, this research service includes detailed technology analysis and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.

Technical Insights is an international technology analysis business that produces a variety of technical news alerts, newsletters, and research services.

About Frost & Sullivan
Frost & Sullivan (, the Growth Partnership Company, enables clients to accelerate growth and achieve best-in-class positions in growth, innovation and leadership. The company's Growth Partnership Service provides the CEO and the CEO's Growth Team with disciplined research and best-practice models to drive the generation, evaluation, and implementation of powerful growth strategies. Frost & Sullivan leverages over 50 years of experience in partnering with Global 1000 companies, emerging businesses and the investment community from 40 offices on six continents.

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