The Weight and Impact of EcoBuilding Bargains
By Shelby Kuenzli, Digital Marketing EcoFellow
The Center for EcoTechnology is proud to say that we have successfully been making green make sense for the past 41 years. One of the many ways in which we make an impact is by operating our EcoBuilding Bargains store (formerly the ReStore Home Improvement Center). EcoBuilding Bargains is the largest used building materials store in New England. It supports CET’s mission by keeping thousands of tons of materials out of landfills – last year alone EcoBuilding Bargains kept over 300 tons of usable building materials from being dumped into landfills!
EcoBuilding Bargains accepts donations of high-quality home improvement materials and sells them to the public at low prices in a convenient retail setting. We make the process incredibly easy for donors by offering a convenient free pick-up service, tax deductions, and savings on disposal costs. Not only do these donations save the environment, but they can also save donors and customers a significant amount of money!
Some of the top donors of materials are contractors and homeowners who have surplus materials from construction or deconstruction of a home. Deconstruction is the careful dismantling of a building to use its materials for re-use, repurposing, recycling, and waste management.
In 2014, in the U.S., the EPA estimates that America produced 534 million tons of construction and demolition waste. The amount of construction and demolition waste that is produced in one year could build a 30-foot-tall by 30 feet wide wall that could enclose the entire coast of the contingent U.S. This is why deconstruction is so important. For the past 15 years, EcoBuilding Bargains has been making an environmental impact by encouraging deconstruction and keeping hundreds of tons of waste out of landfills. In 2016, we repurposed 308 tons of reusable material from donors. This careful deconstruction of homes to allow for the repurposing of building materials has many serious benefits to the environment:
- Deconstruction reduces climate-altering greenhouse gas emissions from landfills and incinerators.
- It reduces the need for more toxic landfills. More and more landfills are needed as construction and demolition waste is on the rise. This debris counts for over half of all the U.S. solid waste.
- It reduces harmful effects of natural resource extraction, transportation, and energy consumption for new building materials.
- It recycles useable material for reuse and creative repurposing.
- It keeps material local, reducing additional adverse harvesting, mining and transportation effects.
In addition to the impact of EcoBuilding Bargains’ waste diversion, the store is also making an impact by providing additional environmentally-friendly options for customers. For example, we sell a wide variety of LED light bulbs, which help customers save energy and money. There are also cost-effective and earth-friendly paint options available that are made from recycled latex paints.
EcoBuilding Bargains is continuing to flourish. Donations are at an all-time high, as are sales of repurposed material. We continue to make a significant environmental impact by reducing the amount of waste going into landfills and we are making a difference in Springfield by creating jobs, offering community programming space and activities, and providing quality products for customers at affordable prices. Stop on by the store to see what we’re all about and how you can be a part of making green make sense!
EcoBuilding Bargains is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
EcoBuilding Bargains is located at 83 Warwick St., Springfield, MA 01104.
For information about how to donate, click here. Visit our website to see a selection of what we have in stock, or call us at (413)-788-6900 if you have any questions. We can’t wait to see you!