Posted by Blake Nijs on June 3 at 1:30 AM
Fiberglass has been used to construct the hulls of boats for many years. Unfortunately the only way to disposing of these boats, was to drag them to the closest dump where they would only be left to pile up in our landfills. Recently, Sandy Cove Marine of Ontario has developed a exciting new way to recycle these boats.
By grinding these less than seaworthy boats down to a pulp, Sandy Cove Marine is developing new products from the remains. One of the ideas is to mix concrete and fiberglass chips to create a more durable finished product. This new concrete is flexible and lighter, making it more resistant to cracking. So far the developer, Don Ford, has tried pouring pavers of this new fiberglass concrete and conducted testing on its properties. Lately Ford is working with Ryerson University to conduct more thorough testing, with the hopes of approaching the National Research Council to further this product.
This all reminds me of Pykrete, the incredibly strong, frozen combination of wood chips and water. Many people have heard of a mythical ship that was built out of Pykrete by the British Navy. Although never historically proven the Pykrete ship was doomed to fail due to the technological limits of the era, not to mention the balmy seas of the Caribbean. It seems this new “green” fiberglass concrete could be our modern day version of this long forgotten idea. This innovation when applied to building materials has the potential to be amazing. When looking at the amount of waste fiberglass that is disposed of each year and the amount of concrete we need for buildings and new construction, this green alternative can and should be the future.
Rightfully so Sandy Cove Marine is receiving the Georgian Bay Chamber of Commerce’s Business of the Year Award, as well as being recognized at the Safe Boating Awards for Safeguarding the Environment. Hopefully other companies around the world can start thinking outside the box, and start giving waste a second life.
Unknown, (2010). Sandy cove marine recyclers. Retrieved from http://www.sandycovemarine.com/Page.aspx/pageId/30181/Sandy-Cove-Marine-Recyclers.aspx
Johnathan, J.L. (2009, Feburary 19). Marine recyclers find practical use for old fibreglass hulls. Retrieved from http://www.boatingbusiness.ca/archive/article/8412
Topics: recycling, strategy, sustainability SHARE: