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How Will a Materials Shortage Unite Us?

 

Construction Materials Shortage in the UK

How are we pulling together to help our construction industry?

How are we going to help construction in a time of crisis?

Why don’t we find ways to make our own, just as we did with face masks and hand sanitizer?

How about we increase the prices of buying bulk to other countries and help supply the UK’s needs instead to help rebuild our economy?

Could this shortage be what the UK needs to find more sustainably sourced materials or alternative materials from within to rebuild our economy and bounce back as a stronger and more united nation?

We developed a vaccine in record time. How? Attention was focussed on what was needed to keep the people safe, the ultimate outcome was a vaccine. Where focus goes, energy lows.

Do we need more materials, or practical alternatives from resources that we have on our own soil? What is the ultimate solution because, if we focus on it, we are clearly capable of making it happen, 2020 was the year like no other that said it all (not the song by Take That.)

Let Winston Churchill inspire us in saying, “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”

Reflection on the COVID-19 Crisis

Take time to reflect on the events that have unfolded during the pandemic. When face masks were in high demand, the supply was limited, which made them expensive to buy. The same with hand sanitizer and other protective PPE to help keep us all safe. But look at what companies, communities, and our amazing, and I mean incredible NHS staff have done to bring together the resources available and achieve what they have, it’s truly inspiring.

Companies have changed policies to keep people safe during the pandemic, adapted to working from home, investing in digital systems, and the biggest of them all, gone ‘virtual’ rather than meeting face-to-face. Whole organisations pivoted overnight to help to wage war on this invisible enemy, we now know as COVID-19. Companies started making face masks, bottling hand sanitizer, delivering gloves, donating food and other resources to those in need.

It was phenomenal, we all came together! What a creative and resourceful bunch of humans we are!

The Current Building Materials Shortage

But why is there now a building materials shortage?

Many factors combined make up this crisis which has dramatically slowed the progress on construction projects of all shapes and sizes. The investment in infrastructure and stamp duty holidays gives house buyers and house-builders more significant incentives, but with the UK relying a lot on importing goods, have we partially created our own problems?

How are we pulling together to help our construction industry? How are we going to help construction in a time of crisis? Why don’t we find ways to make our own, just as we did with face masks and hand sanitizer? How about we increase the prices of buying bulk to other countries and help supply the UK’s needs instead to help rebuild our economy? Could this shortage be what the UK needs to find more sustainably sourced materials or alternative materials from within to rebuild our economy and bounce back as a stronger and more united nation? We developed a vaccine in record time.

How?

Attention was focussed on what was needed to keep the people safe, the ultimate outcome was a vaccine. Where focus goes, energy lows. DO we need more materials, or practical alternatives from resources that we have on our own soil?

Porcelain Paving – A Functional Alternative

Some materials are being used as ingredients to products that have a functional alternative, which delivers the same and sometimes, a better result.

For example, porcelain paving instead of concrete slabs could mean more cement available for building.

It’s about finding ways to re-prioritize resources into (1) ingredients and (2) end products to find what can be used as alternatives to free up the essential resources to keep the UK building.

The options for porcelain paving as one resource are endless; LavelloAvonCharltonCarloGranitoCliftonCementoBostonRusticoCentoWaverleySargentTorelloTempletonQuarzoAltonAlnwick.

With a limited range of options comes the ability to still design and create form and functionality without the issues of finding those resources, being responsible for substantial overseas’ s environmental pollution, and gives us control over how we deliver our construction goals sustainably.