The purpose behind Econovate's development is to radically improve the sustainability of construction materials. This objective has been achieved with the successful reinvention of one of the most fundamental and widely used building materials – the construction block.
What makes Econovate products different?
Econovate® product, the EconoBlok®, is manufactured from recovered unwanted waste fibre cellulose. This cellulose is used as its main aggregate and is bound by sustainable cement, which contains up to 80% of recycled raw materials within its mixture. The fibre cellulose that is diverted from landfills is unsuitable for paper mills due to its contamination. Therefore, this waste can be transformed into a product for the construction industry, giving it a second chance in a different industry.
The products are manufactured by a bespoke production process, where the focus is in its raw material preparation. Our aim is to achieve a high standard of material, regardless of the source or format of fibre cellulose. Moreover, we aim to deliver a product with the strength of any current block in the market, with enhanced performance of thermal and acoustic insulation. The second focus of this production is to have a low-tech low-energy consumption process while achieving a product.
Embodied energy, for comparison purpose, has been calculated on a cradle-to-gate carbon footprint of the wall specification, based on one square metre of wall. The embodied energy figure calculated is 1,890 MJ per cubic metre, with reductions of up to 89% when compared to the same standard lightweight concrete blocks.
The figure of embeded emissions calculated for the EconoBlok® is 88 kg CO2/m3. Due to high content of recycled material and taking into account the carbon sequestration, the carbon footprint figure for an EconoBlok® becomes -174 kg CO2/m3. This means that with the EconoBlok® product there is a 45% to 88% reduction on Kg CO2/m3.
When calculating the carbon footprint of the wall specification, based on one square metre of wall. The figure calculated is 88 kg CO2/m2 of wall. When the carbon credit due to sequestration is taken into account, the figure becomes 53 kg CO2/m2 of wall.
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) has been conducted by ARUP on the EconoBlok® product. This LCA is based on our current pilot plant setting. All the calculations have being conducted following an EDP (Environmental Declaration of Performance).