In honor of Earth Day this Friday, Constructech presents five ways (one for each day this week) to go green in construction using technology. From recycling materials (and even your cellphone) to cutting out the paper, you may find that with a few tweaks to your normal routine you can help the environment.
#1 Save the Landfills
Look around your jobsite. Chances are you have material that can be of use to someone else. Rather than fill the landfills with your project leftovers, put them in an online auction instead.
Last week we reported on how the ASA (American Subcontractors Assn.), www.asaonline.com, Alexandria, Va., announced a partnership with ZamRay.com, www.zamray.com, Westminster, Colo., to allow subcontractors to place the surplus inventory into a construction-specific online classified advertising marketplace. Buyers can then search by material type, geography, or price.
#2 Get a Green Device
Next time you go looking for a new device for the field—laptop, smartphone, tablet—rather than swinging by the local phone store or big box retailer, try a greener approach instead.
Try a company like Gazelle, www.gazelle.com, Boston, Mass., which buys cellphones, laptops, and other gadgets—typically for about $20-$150, or ReCellular, www.recellular.com, Ann Arbor, Mich., a business specializing in used electronics.
#3 Document Management
Construction companies produce a lot of paper. There is really isn’t much more to say about that …
#4 Your Remote Base
The younger generation of workers performs work differently than what is traditionally accepted. Typically construction has embraced this out of necessity with field foreman and project managers at remote sites. But you could find yourself embracing remote workers in other areas too. Rather than incur the travel costs, set up a robust remote connectivity infrastructure.
#5 Keep Your Tools
Active RFID can provide construction with a realtime locating system, which uses a construction company’s existing wireless network. This can help provide realtime and historical location information for high-value or ‘niche’ items which are frequently misplaced or hoarded. In other words, no more spending money on new tools.
The technology can also produce event-driven email alerts when assets being tracked pass a particular checkpoint or remain in one place for too long.