On a national scale, between 1996 and 2014, damages in the United States due to hazards (hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, earthquakes, wildfires, etc.) totaled more than $377 billion, according to the National Weather Service. The Real Value of Resilient Construction, a new report from the Portland Cement Association (PCA), notes that reinforced concrete structures reduce recovery costs after disasters hit and the upfront costs of incorporating resilient concrete features may not be significant, and are likely to save money in the long run.
Through historical data, evidence from external sources, and comparisons of building materials, the report demonstrates that resilient design and construction built with concrete leads to longer lasting buildings due to the material’s ability to stand up to normal wear and tear and resistance to extreme weather events.
“U.S. taxpayers cannot afford to continue building and rebuilding the way we did in the past,” said Michael Ireland, PCA President and CEO. “Strong, robust structures ensure community continuity and provide long lasting value for scarce taxpayer dollars.”
The report also looks at how concrete buildings are the new green buildings. Structures that last longer reduce environmental footprint because their emissions, attributed to heating, cooling and operation, can be spread over many decades. Incorporating concrete can also contribute toward achieving points in the USGBC’s LEED program, the leading program for green building and communities worldwide.
The report and its executive summary are available online.