Environmental Performance of a Danish Precast Factory

Claus Vestergaard Nielsen

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Environmental Performance of a Danish Precast Factory

Article by Claus Vestergaard Nielsen, M.Sc., Ph.D. Danish Technological Institute, Denmark
Featured at 18th BIBM International Congress and Exhibition, Amsterdam, 11-14 May 2005.

The paper presents one of the leading precast factories in Denmark, Spæncom Kolding, who published an environmental statement in 2003. This statement included various environmental key figures regarding resource and energy consumption together with relevant emission figures.

Spæncom Kolding annually produces about 74,000 tonnes of concrete slabs, walls, beams and columns. The paper presents the environmental measures taken by the factory throughout the last 5 years regarding reuse of water and improvements in the working environment.

The paper also presents key figures since 1997 relating energy consumption and emissions to the annual production. These key figures only concern the precast production itself (mixing, batching, casting, curing). In order to put things into perspective they are compared with similar key figures including the embodied energy of cement and aggregates.

At Danish Technological Institute we are actively involved in the EU network ECOserve on sustainability issues associated with concrete production. Two of the important tasks within this network consist of establishing suitable environmental indicators and to identify the best available technology for sustainable concrete production. This paper is an attempt to illustrate how this may be done in a plausible manner.

Furthermore, it is expected that in the future environmental key figures will be an essential part of the product information alongside mechanical performance and price. Therefore, the issues raised by this paper concern all European precast producers.