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Why Concrete’s Colossal Footprint is More Complicated Than You Think (and Why That Matters to Everyone)


When one complains about the environmental footprint of concrete, the main issue is usually the carbon footprint that comes from the production of cement. But cement is only about 15% of concrete; the rest is aggregate, the rock that the cement binds together. As this slide from The Highland Companies shows, concrete and aggregate is a big part of infrastructure. And just north of Toronto, in Melancthon, the company wants to dig a honking big hole covering 2,316 acres, over 200 feet below the water table, to supply aggregate to the Greater Toronto Area.

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