Sustainability and LSF

Steel construction provides the most sustainable and economic buildings, representing the most efficient use of resources. This longevity combined with the inherent value of an asset that can be  recycled or reused at end of life means that steel is not a cost, it is an investment.

Light steel sections are protected from corrosion by continuous hot-dip zinc coating, and the natural properties of steel prevents it from shrinking, warping or changing shape.
Galvanised steel does not suffer from fungal or biological deterioration and is not susceptible to insect infestation. 

Steel as a material is sustainable for a number of reasons:

1. Reduced Resource
The development of higher strength steels means that LSF structures are built using less steel. Less steel lowers upfront carbon, not just from the material itself, but also reductions in the transport weight, construction and foundation weight.

2. Durable and Long Lasting
Building with a material such as LSF that requires little or zero maintenance, and can meet design life requirements within three figures, meaning the utilisation of the resource is maxmised.

3. Well Suited to the Circular Economy
The durability and adaptability of steel enables:
• Modification and adaptation of existing buildings 
• Reuse of steel at the end of its initial use
• Deconstruction and ‘remanufacturing’ of the steel for another purpose
• Steel that is not reused in construction can be repurposed to form another steel product

4. Minimal Waste

Many of the by-products of the steel manufacturing process can be utilised in other processes or industries, significantly reducing wastage.


Thermal efficiency


 Embodied carbon reduction


 Reduced materials – load to weight ratio


 Productivity/speed of build reduced, having a positive environmental impact


Reduced transportation


 Reduced waste


Compatibility with renewable energy technologies


 Easily adapted/dismantled for re-use


 Steel is the most recycled product on earth after water


 End of life recyclability

Useful Documents:

The Steel Construction – Carbon Credentials supplement produced by Steel for Life and the BCSA.

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