Kenaf Essay

1020 words - 5 pages

There is no doubt that the world and the environment which we live in today has been dramatically altered. Rolling plains and lively wetlands that once covered the earth are now replaced with bustling, populated cities. With the rise of industrialization, urbanization, and population, it has become clear that our limited energy supply won’t be able to support us for much longer. Regardless, there is no need to revert to the standards of living before the Industrialization Revolution. There simply needs to be greater efficiency and sustainability with energy supplies in the future. Applying sustainable energy sources and materials to green buildings attacks the problem at its roots; it provides a foundation for a cleaner future that is reliant not on coal and fossil fuels, but on renewable energy sources. The future undoubtedly features further urbanization and growth, but that does not necessarily have to put a strain on the environment. Ideally, they can coexist with minimal damage.
The main strategy to maintaining sustainability in green buildings is to reduce energy demands while increasing energy efficiency. Energy efficiency is greatly affected by building materials. Building materials determine thermal performance, which is a primary factor in energy efficiency. Thermal insulation materials are helpful when it pertains to energy performance. In today’s market, insulation materials range from inorganic fibrous materials such as glass wool to organic foamy materials such as polystyrene (GhaffarianHoseini et al. 5). However, biomaterials are quickly rising in popularity. Biomaterials tend to have less environmental impact than resources previously mentioned and multiple purposes. A notable example would be kenaf, which is used for thermal insulation and energy efficiency and preferred for its ability to absorb high quantities of carbon dioxide.
Grown in Mediterranean countries and used principally in thermal insulation and energy efficiency, kenaf is relatively sustainable throughout its life cycle. When farmed, it is not detrimental to the soil and does not require fertilizer to produce a substantial yield. It takes relatively little effort to cultivate and is a viable option for rural communities to build a local economy upon (“Kenaf Based Building Material Shows Promise"). Kenaf has a variety of uses including textile, paper, and building insulation boards. There are three main steps to kenaf being manufactured into insulation boards. First, there is the cultivation, then there is the cleaning and refining, and lastly, there is the manufacturing. Kenaf leaves are packaged in bales and transported, where they are analyzed for quality, and then cleaned. During the process, the cortical and ligneous parts are removed. The rest are compressed into pellets and cleaned. At the end, thermo-fusible polyester resins are added as a binding agent and the result is put into the furnace. The manufacturing of kenaf isolation material has a relatively...

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