Diario Financiero | Sustainable construction advances with prefabricated systems

Apr 27, 2023

Reducing waste, thanks to detailed planning of the construction process, is just one of the benefits of this model, which is enabling companies in the industry to advance in good environmental practices.

Industrialized construction generates a series of positive impacts on productivity and cost reduction for companies, but it also promotes externalities that contribute to the development of sustainable practices in favor of the environment and the surroundings.

‘It is a transversal opportunity’, highlights Marcos Brito, manager of Construye2025, because productivity and sustainability are closely linked. Sustainability from the point of view of energy efficiency and thermal comfort is a quality factor of the highest importance; more sustainable housing -from this point of view- means better health and better quality of life for its inhabitants, in a significant way’, he points out.

On the other hand, they also generate less waste, as they are more efficient in the use of their resources and better planned in all their processes. Waste is in itself a clear indicator of unproductivity’, adds Brito. In fact, Daniela Quintana, director of the Master’s program in Applied Construction Technologies at the Universidad Autónoma, explains that serial construction seeks to make better use of materials and, in turn, by transporting these preconstructed products, waste at the construction site is reduced.

Antonio Boetsch, general manager of Boetek, adds that by working in more controlled and better planned environments, ‘better cubing is achieved, construction errors are avoided and surplus materials are recycled’. He also points out that by improving the quality of installations, buildings operate better, are more efficient and emit fewer polluting gases.

‘These innovations are an important contribution,’ says Quintana, in an industry where companies are incorporating sustainability as part of their environmental policies.

To massify good practices

Specialists believe that the massification of industrialized construction helps the industry to generate more and better sustainable instances. Its prior planning ‘involves the choice and selection of materials, construction systems and components, so that delivery is timely, affordable and of high quality, and where aspects such as passive solutions for energy efficiency and thermal comfort, durability, proper ventilation and minimizing the demand for energy for air conditioning, for example, must be addressed’, says Brito. This, he says, encourages fast, clean and low-carbon delivery.

For Boetsch, the most important thing is to be more innovative and be willing to increase their direct costs to lower administrative and operational costs: ‘It is a point that is very difficult to implement because it means a change in the conceptual management of companies. The results have proven to be very good, as in the case of prefabricated stairways and our modular boiler rooms’.

Álvaro Rosenblut, partner at albagli zaliasnik, believes that the construction industry should not limit itself to just adapting to new demands for green buildings and infrastructure, ‘but be proactive in creating value from new circular supply chains. It is about radically reshaping the construction ecosystem’.

In this regard, he notes that progress needs to be made on green initiatives such as adopting renewable energy sourcing strategies and new production processes, renewing fleets with low-carbon commercial vehicles and switching to low-emission heavy-duty vehicles.

‘New processes and tools must also be developed to measure carbon emissions and monitor progress towards carbon neutrality for both direct and indirect emissions,’ he adds, defining environmental KPIs and using technology to centralize and monitor such data, as well as moving towards full life-cycle management of buildings.

Source: Diario Financiero, April 27, 2023.

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