Bricks are still a major part of construction across the globe, and those bricks are most often fired at high temperatures for days, which require the burning of fuels that give off 800 million tons of greenhouse gases per year.
That is where a North Carolina-based company is stepping in with a process that essentially grows bricks using bacteria. The process uses microorganisms that produce a calcium carbonate to solidify and strengthen the more common aggregate materials into bricks. It is similar to the way that coral forms, and it is supposed to be a zero waste, and zero emission manufacturing process.
The company, BioMason, is aiming to use materials from renewable sources or even from industrial waste as an overall attempt to reduce pollution.
Their bricks can be grown to customer specifications, can be customized, and are part of a growing effort to find ways to grow materials for use in construction and other production methods.
BioMason is hoping to start marketing their new bio bricks sometime this year (2017) and they are pursuing further research in other areas of construction to help reduce the climate impact from the construction industry, which estimates put at up to 40% of all greenhouse emissions.