top of page


Costruire a zero rifiuti

Strategie e strumenti per la prevenzione e l’upcycling dei materiali di scarto in edilizia.


by Paola Altamura + Serena Baiani, Eliana Cangelli, Fabrizio Orlandi, Giovanni Zannoni



Publication date


372 pages

Italiano -English

2015 04

21 x 28 cm

The use of materials in construction involves high environmental costs: consumption of soil and raw materials, CO2 emissions, and vast production of waste, which can only be avoided using closed-cycle resources, from cradle to cradle. The prevention and upcycling of construction and demolition waste materials and other supply chains are decisive for the ecological impact of the building, which can no longer be entrusted exclusively to energy efficiency during use.

The volume presents the features of an innovative design-operational approach to construction, with zero waste, to induce a rethinking of the logic of selecting materials. Alongside a framework of theoretical and regulatory references, the text illustrates the potential for reusing and recycling the most used materials. It presents seven international best practices useful for understanding various practical strategies.

Therefore, the volume proposes a systematic set of procedures and tools aimed at the three leading operators in the construction chain: client, designer, and contractor. Design principles, technical details, criteria for calls for tenders and tenders, IT tools to address innovative but substantially urgent questions:

- how to design with recycled components and materials?

- how to allow a zero-waste transformation or disposal of the building?

- how to build a tender specification favouring sustainable product procurement?

The book thus offers an in-depth investigation of efficiency in the use of resources in construction, which it attempts to transfer to Italy through technical and operational guidelines that meet the most up-to-date environmental requirements.

About the author

Paola Altamura, architect and Ph.D. carries out research activities at the PDTA Department of the "Sapienza" University of Rome, where she has collaborated with the chair of Architecture Technology since 2009. Her research on sustainable building concerns, particularly the design strategies for the end of the materials' life-cycle. He collaborated with the Resource Efficiency research team of the BRE in Watford (UK). She participated in the EU LIFE + LOWaste project with the prototype of a web platform to develop the aggregates recycling chain. She is the author of national and international publications on sustainable management of construction and demolition waste.

bottom of page