There are approximately 17 million shipping containers around the world, with only about 5-6 million currently in circulation. Often times, shipping containers are left stacked at their destination city, as it is cheaper to do that than to ship them back to Asia or Europe. These huge shipping ports are sitting on millions of unused shipping containers. So, what can we do with all of them? Is there an environment friendly way to handle all this?
One might say, “Couldn’t we just melt the shipping containers down and reuse the metal?” Well that would take an absurd amount of energy (about the same amount as an average household in America uses in a year), which would not be efficient and certainly not eco-friendly.
What are some other options? Well, shipping containers are currently being repurposed for all sorts of interesting projects (read our last blog to see some of these), but most widely they are being recycled to build container homes!
Those who build their homes out of shipping containers are literally living inside a recyclable. They are utilizing the pre-used steel and giving the shipping container a new purpose. Additionally, by using recycled materials, they are reducing the overall demand for other resources that would be used to build a home from the ground up, like concrete, wood and bricks. Some estimate that it takes around 2 acres of trees to build the average American home!
Many people see shipping containers as an important player in our future of sustainable and eco-friendly architecture! Here at CargoHome we think using shipping containers to build homes is a viable way to reduce deforestation and excess production. What do you think? Leave your answers in the comments below!