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Growing Bricks To Reduce Construction’s Nasty Carbon Impact

Growing Bricks To Reduce Construction’s Nasty Carbon Impact
[Image: Bricks via Wikipedia]

The world produces a lot of bricks: a scarcely believable 2.3 trillion every year, according to the Carbon War Room, an environmental nonprofit. That’s good for building houses and so on, but less good for the environment. Brick-making in just five Asian countries produces 1.2% of all carbon emissions.

That’s why Ginger Dosier wants to make bricks using a wholly different method. Rather then firing them, she wants to grow them. She grows her bricks in a bacterial gunk, using sand and greenhouses. “Since these bricks are not fired, they require sequential feedings of nutrients and minerals that provide the environment for crystal formation,” she wrote Co.Exist in an email.

See Dosier talk about her work in this TED talk from earlier this summer:

Dosier’s company Biomason is a finalist in the 2013 Postcode Lottery Green Challenge, a Dutch innovation competition that announces a winner soon.

Dosier won’t “name individuals or partners at this time,” but claims to be steadily reducing production costs. “The materials for the bricks are sourced from inexpensive supply chains, and are in an economic closed-loop system,” she says. “We are looking at waste-water, agriculture, and desalination brine as potential waste-streams.”

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