Sustainability ENews Vol 11 #17 Better Recycling

The Masonry Society


Sustainability E-News

Better Recycling

September 15, 2019



Volume 11, Number 17




From The Editor

It is probably no surprise, but I am a big fan of recycling. At a recent neighborhood event, I was disappointed to see so much trash in the recycling bins and so many recyclables in the trash - I could barely tell them apart! After talking with friends, I've come to believe the issue often stems from confusion over what is or is not recyclable in a local community, and a lack of knowledge as to the consequences of tossing in something you think is recyclable but is actually not. For manufacturers to move toward a more circular economy, as a nation we need to do a better job of providing them with recyclable materials not contaminated with stuff that is not recyclable. This article by National Public Radio (NPR) discusses the challenges that many communities are facing in keeping recycling a viable effort. By doing our own part to properly recycle, we can help our local communities. This link is the best I've seen at showing generally what is and is not recyclable and why. As the saying goes, 'when in doubt, throw it out!'


Christine "Tina" Subasic, PE, LEED AP


NOTE: Inclusion in this newsletter is not an endorsement of the products and materials featured, nor have these products been evaluated by TMS or the editor. Furthermore, the views expressed in the articles featured are those of the article authors.






Transforming waste into something useful requires attention to detail and thorough planning - whether that involves recycling streams or deconstructing a building. Read more in the links below. ~Tina


The tool to demystify the circular economy


No two people will likely define circular economy in the same way. It’s a term that can be hard for businesses to know how to put into practice. That’s why Edge Environment created a tool to help suppliers and designers understand how their products contribute to the creation of a more circular economy, and the potential steps they can take to move their products further in that direction. Read more.


USGBC releases new brief on city deconstruction, salvage and reuse policies


A new brief now available from the USGBC Advocacy and Policy team, "From Demolition to Deconstruction: City Salvage and Reuse Policies," outlines important considerations for policymakers thinking about a deconstruction policy. Deconstruction is an innovative process that can salvage waste from demolition. Read more about it here


Architizer highlights five eye-popping CMU residences


Architizer recently highlighted five designs that rethink CMU construction and detailing. As versatile units, the blocks can double as structural frames and base systems for veneer applications. Showcasing how concrete masonry can be used throughout low-rise buildings, the projects celebrate contemporary CMU design. To view them, click here.  



Health Product Declarations (HPDs) are one of the easier transparency reports for manufacturers to complete. The link below discusses them and the LEED v4.1 system. ~Tina


How to earn LEED v4.1 credit with HPDs


Health Product Declarations (HPDs) offer an easier path than ever to LEED credits under LEED v4.1. The HPD Collaborative (HPDC) has published new guidance for LEED project teams and manufacturers looking to earn points under the new version of the rating system recently released by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). Click here to learn more.


Residential Research Quarterly: June 2019


See the second-quarter roundup of the top research on residential green building here.


Economics are an integral part of sustainability. The article below discusses how improving supply chain transparency can yield economic benefits as well. ~Tina


Revenue is a benefit of supply chain transparency


Making supply chains visible and transparent helps companies gain consumers' trust, which can improve revenue, according to a research study. "Even small investments in supply chain visibility can make a big difference for a company," said Y. Karen Zheng of the MIT Sloan School of Management.



Register Now for The Masonry Society Annual Meeting

Registration is now open for the TMS Annual Meeting to be held in Scottsdale, AZ November 6 - 9, 2019. Join us for Educational Sessions on a variety of topics including LEED v4.1, as well as the meeting of the new Building Performance Committee. For more information and a full schedule of events, visit the TMS website.


Survey: Calling all engineers and architects


Researchers at The Pennsylvania State University want to know, what should graduating engineers know about masonry? Share your thoughts by taking this short survey.

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