As social media acts as the so-called answer to our American Dream, the Huffington Post app on your iPhone has been making shockwaves in the next best thing of what is “trending” today: incinerator plants as art in European countries. Subconsciously, you are probably thinking “have we gone crazy with this Sustainable Revolution?” Wasn’t the 60s counter-culture revolution enough to take over our societal norms? Can anything exist long-term?
These new inventions are attracting architects and other creative thinkers internationally into absorbing links, networks, and cobwebs of solutions and answers in bettering our environments and infrastructures that are suffering.
The modernized incinerator plants are meant to burn waste by converting it into a new means of energy resource, called electrical energy or electricity. Electricity can creatively be produced from waste and cause less carbon footprint in dense areas. Transporting trash would result in shorter distances.
Modernism has predominately shifted the concept and look of these plants. For instance, these plants now have sophisticated devices for filtering away particles due to emission. The chemicals can be even recycled as well.
The more recycling, the percentage of toxins reduces to less than that of a cigarette butt.
These days, architects believe, that “these waste-to-energy plants are to have the same architectural treatment as any other building”, says Kirsten Lees, partner at Grimshaw in Europe.
For instance, The Sita UK plant in Suffolk County of England has an aesthetic approach and a better fit within the community. Louvers were to be designed to provide shading. A transparent skin wall cladding was construed to allow visitors to imagine how energy really can be transformed from wasteful products, an educational bonus point. Topographical contours of the brownfield area were manipulated onto the walls as a way to fit into the land as a sensible piece of work.
This is very interesting to envision “sustainable” plants as an advantage in helping control our environment and our natural “leftovers”, as opposed to existing as an “unpleasant factory” setback behind landfills. All buildings and structures, no matter what function or purpose, serve a purpose in acting as a significant factor in designing society, for the betterment as well as aesthetics.
ARCHITECT The Magazine of the American Institute of Architects, Trash As Treasure