Here’s an interesting concept- buildings that clean up after themselves. Sounds odd, but it seems Alcoa , who makes aluminum panels for the construction industry is on to something…
good.is: Alcoa recently announced a new coating with the overwrought brand name Reyobond with EcoClean. When applied to aluminum panels, the titanium dioxide coating interacts with sunlight to break down the smog-causing compound nitrogen oxide into an innocuous substance that washes off the building in a rain. Alcoa claims that 10,000 square feet of coated aluminum would have the air-cleaning effects of 80 trees.
Sounds hopeful, but does it really work?
As Nadav Malin, president of BuildingGreen.com, says, “you’d have to have a lot of this out there in the built environment to make any dent in air pollution.” But panels with EcoClean will only cost 5 percent more than their regular counterparts, and every little bit helps. Besides, the general idea of developing buildings that clean the environment themselves has thrilling potential.
Which begs the question, what’s Alcoa really coming up with here? A new product that can give Alcoa some sort of perceived environmental clout or just a new way to make extra money? And if it really does come down to environmental concerns- what’s wrong with just growing 80 trees adjacent to the building, or at least somewhere within proximity?