In the context of the struggling South African construction industry, extended and institutionalised knowledge about improving the durability of concrete structure is crucial to the competitiveness of the South African concrete industry. This is according to The Concrete Institute’s School of Concrete Technology senior lecturer, John Roxburgh, who makes the point that durability and sustainability of concrete are intrinsically linked.

“If you build a durable structure, it becomes more sustainable, as you don’t have to spend lots of time and energy repairing and maintaining it. The life-cycle cost is reduced, and that’s why durable concrete is so important,” says Roxburgh.

“At least 50% of concrete durability is the way you handle and look after that concrete. You can have a very durable mix design, but if you don’t place, compact, cure and protect the concrete correctly, it’s not going to be durable,” Roxburgh continues.

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