Why concrete?

If concrete production is such a large source of CO2 emissions, shouldn’t we stop using it? Unfortunately, there is no simple way to replace our use of concrete with something more environmentally friendly (at least not today). In fact, for its strength and utility, reinforced concrete is actually less energy intensive than most of the alternatives, and the raw materials required to make concrete can be obtained cheaply all over the world1. A global decrease in the use of concrete is therefore not anticipated in the near future.

However, the ubiquity of reinforced concrete also means that even a small efficiency in its use can scale up to have measurable global benefits. With this in mind, our research focuses on the following ways of improving the ways we use reinforced concrete: