Towards a Circular Future in Construction

At BAM, we strive for sustainability in our operations, but achieving this goal is a real challenge. The construction industry is showing growing interest in circular concrete and steel, but different clients have their own varying requirements for these materials. This creates a growing need for uniform procurement standards. 

Reusing three thousand tonnes of steel. It is happening in the renovation of Rotterdam's Van Brienenoord Bridge. It is unique to deal with steel in such a circular way, as well as with concrete. For instance, concrete rarely gets a high-quality second life and often disappears as debris under new roads or buildings.

Klaas-Jan Visser, commercial manager at BAM, emphasises the value of retaining materials in the construction chain, not only from a sustainability perspective, but also from efficiency considerations. With the expected increase in replacement and renovation projects for bridges and viaducts in the Netherlands, conserving materials is of great importance. 

low-cement bridge

Although we are not alone in our commitment to circularity, many parties in the construction industry are running into challenges. Clients often struggle to procure circular concrete and steel products due to the various requirements. 'A lot of energy and time is lost in the process, while the solution does not become more sustainable as a result,' thinks Klaas-Jan Visser.

On behalf of Dutch builders, he is closely involved in the Concrete Agreement.  Vissers has long stressed the need for uniform procurement rules to address these challenges and promote sustainability. This will allow the construction sector to take steps towards a more circular future, despite the challenges ahead.