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Clay brick and Carbon Footprints

The manufacture of building materials including bricks, gypsum wall panels etc. is responsible for at least 12% of all carbon dioxide emissions, directly contributing to global warming.

What is a Carbon Footprint?

Fuels are burnt in order to create energy for the process of manufacture and facilitate the use of equipment. This consumption of fossil fuels produces Carbon Dioxide emissions which contributes to global warming. The amount of carbon dioxide and other harmful gases which are emitted as a result of the activities of a group or individual are referred to as a carbon footprint.

Clay Bricks help to negate their own Carbon Footprint

Clay bricks are fired in kilns for up to 3days at incredibly high temperatures which are supplied by the burning of fossil fuels such as coal, natural gas is also sometimes used and has a lower percentage emission of the two.

Where clay brick makes up for its initial carbon footprint is in the qualities that the brick possesses which then allow the end user to minimise carbon emissions.

Clay brick has the following qualities:

  • Durability – Which means there isn't a need for replacement or rebuilding as the building will last for a long time
  • Thermal mass – Clay brick is able to absorb heat and allow it to dissipate as the air cools leaving the space slightly warmer than outside thereby reducing the need for heating and as such reducing the carbon footprint.
  • Insulation – The insulation provided by clay brick is high than that of a structure built out of raw natural elements like timber, meaning less need for heating.

These qualities allow for more energy efficiency and a decrease in carbon emissions both from the aspect of the clay brick maker and also inhabitants of the clay brick structures


TEL : 010 593-0837/8/9 | FAX : 086 572-2883 | EMAIL : sales@brickwarehouse.co.za | Office in Randpark Ridge, Johannesburg, Gauteng