WHY STEEL IS THE GREENEST
All UK steel windows are now manufactured from recycled steel. And when they come to the end of their useful life, perhaps centuries from now (steel does not warp, rot or degrade), they can be recycled again!
The steel window industry is now recognised as amongst the greenest building product manufacturers and its only environmental crime is that it fails to promote its green credentials as strongly as it probably should.
“It’s a huge advantage in this market, in this environment that we are in at the moment,” said SWA President Matthew Hahn, “but we don’t shout about it enough. We are producing a new Specifiers Guide and will be including information about how steel is recycled, but we should make more of it.”
The SWA is also employing a consultant to study the life cycle of the steel window. The report produced is designed to help local authorities and others comply with new building codes demanding life cycle analysis of materials.
All Steel Window Association members get their bars or profile, the basic lengths of steel the windows are made of, from a single company in Switzerland called Montanstahl.
“The raw materials we use to roll steel window sections at are 100% recycled,” said Michael Stumm, managing director of Montanstahl.
About 97% comes from post consumer used waste (like scrap cars). Montanstahl’s electric arc furnaces are tuned to use waste. Every tonne of recycled steel saves about a tonne of iron ore, 600kg of col and 50kg of limestone.