At the heart of every Decra tile is steel, the most recycled material in the world, and this has been the case for around 150 years. All new steel manufacture relies on the introduction of high quantities of used steel to increase the efficiency of the furnaces and, therefore, it is practically unheard of for new steel to be virgin in content. In fact, new steel usually has a content of used steel in the region of 25%, a figure that compares very favourably with the negligible amounts of recycled material found in most concrete and clay roof tiles. And when, eventually, the Decra roof is decommissioned the steel can be recycled once again.
It is, of course, this inner core of steel that gives Decra tiles their ultra light weight and, consequently, their high volumetric efficiency.
Decra tiles pack together so compactly during storage and transport that more tiles can be moved around on fewer vehicles. It has been estimated that a single truckload of Decra tiles will cover the same roof area as 8 truckloads of concrete or clay roof tiles.
Decra reduces demands on the transportation infrastructure consequently reducing demands on fossil fuels and reducing emissions of CO2 and other green house gases.
The graphic above shows the volumetric efficiency of Decra tiles compared to traditional materials. The environmental and logistical benefits are obvious.
Volumetric efficiency (benefits To The environment & The UK transport network)
Because of the lightweight and compact nature of the Decra Roof System volumetric efficiency is greatly increased. Currently in the United Kingdom about 22% of national energy consumption is used by transport, high volumetric efficiency reduces demands on the transportation infrastructure consequently reducing demands on fossil fuels and reducing emissions of CO2 and other green house gases.
Volumetric efficiency (health benefits)
The compact nature of the Decra Roof System has additional health benefits; lower usage of heavy goods vehicles is a simple and effective way of reducing emissions of PM10 and NOx particles.
The Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions have stated in a recent article* “Cars have the most environmental impact, due to their greater number, but HGV’s are a significant source of emissions and are forecasted to become the primary source of both PM10 and NOx emissions from road transport”.
The detrimental effects of particles, especially on respiratory diseases are increasingly viewed as matter of growing concern. Particles most likely to be inhaled into the lung are usually below 10 microns in diameter (Known as PM10 particles). PM10 particles can pass the human larynx and penetrate to the deep lung causing lung diseases. NOx particles can have both acute (short-term) and chronic (long-term) effects on health, particularly in people with asthma –primarily due to NO2.
*Source (DETR) “The Environmental Impacts of Road Vehicles in Use, Air Quality, Climate Change and Noise Pollution” .