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The New Stone Age: ancient material: tiny carbon footprint

  • by JW

It’s cheaper and greener to use stone – as opposed to concrete or steel


Concrete is used everywhere – and its production creates a lot of carbon:

Alternatives to asphalt concrete

When it comes to building, there are other alternatives:

New advances in timber construction

And there is plenty of research going on for new materials:

BRE Centre for Innovative Construction Materials |


And the Guardian’s architecture correspondent looks at the latest ideas on a pretty obvious alternative to concrete::


The miracle new sustainable product that’s revolutionising architecture – stone!

It’s cheap, light, quick, fireproof and has a tiny carbon footprint compared to concrete. No wonder the ‘great forgotten material of our time’ is staging a comeback

“Stone,” says architect Amin Taha, “is the great forgotten material of our time. In 99% of cases, it’s cheaper and greener to use stone in a structural way, as opposed to concrete or steel, but we mostly just think of using it for cladding.”

Taha is on a mission to show the potential of stone beyond decoration. Together with stonemason Pierre Bidaud and engineer Steve Webb, he has curated an exhibition at the Building Centre that aims to reveal how this primal material, used to create shelter for millennia, has the potential to revolutionise contemporary construction as we know it. Brace yourselves for the dawn of the New Stone Age.

The New Stone Age is at the Building Centre, London, until 15 May.

The miracle new sustainable product that’s revolutionising architecture – stone! |


Of course, stone has been around a long, long time…

Devon is famous for its cob, but there are several stone structures – including innumerable flint walls:



Cedar Shade, Sidmouth from All Saints Road
Listed grade II, the house dates from the early 19th century; it became a hotel and then was divided into apartments. One of Sidmouth’s blue plaques is at the gateway

ar Shade, Sidmouth from All Saints… © David Smith :: Geograph …