Welsh Company Builds Recyclable Homes
Imagine living in a home made of recycled waste plastic. Sure, it’s been done before, but Affresol takes it to a whole new level.
Backed by Welsh Assembly Government money, this “modular house construction company” launched a series of eco-friendly homes and four-ton modular, portable buildings. The awesome thing about these structures is not only do they have a house-life expectancy of at least 60 years, but most of the building elements can also be recycled once the house is ready to be torn down.
They started by creating a new material, called Thermo Poly Pock (TPR); which is a combination of recycled plastics and structural building materials. It’s also stronger and lighter than concrete, plus waterproof, fire retardant, rot-resistant and an excellent insulator.
Then, the TPR panels are bolted together to form the frame of the house. This frame can be externally surrounded by brick, block or stone. Internally, it is insulated and plastered like any other house. As for the roof, that’s also made from recycled materials.
Managing Director, Ian McPherson, claimed:
“Every country in the world has issues with waste and we now have an opportunity to turn waste into an enduring housing resource that is 100% recyclable.”
The company certainly wasn’t alone in their efforts. In fact, they spent the past 2 years working with the Building Research Establishment (BRE), Carbon Trust, and Cardiff and Glamorgan Universities to develop the product. Currently, they are awaiting BRE accreditation. After that’s obtained, Affresol plans to build 19 homes in Merthyr as their pilot project.
Another good bit of news for the construction company is they’re already getting orders from businesses. Worcester Bosch—a heating and water system company—ordered the first modular building. They believe that by supplying Affresol with plastic from recycled boilers, they’ll be able to achieve a zero waste policy.
I’m not sure what one of these homes or buildings would cost—you’d have to contact the company yourself to find out. What I do know is I’d certainly opt for a home that’s not only made of recycled material, but can also be recycled itself once its house-life comes to an end. That’s simply awesome in itself.
By Heidi Marshall