The seafood and aquaculture industry produces tons and tons of waste seashells. Looking to make something from all this waste, a design firm called Newtab-22 has used them to develop a sustainable material that resembles concrete.
Named Sea Stone, the material is made by grinding down shells that are destined for landfill before combining them with natural, non-toxic binders. This grants the Sea Stone a terrazzo-like aesthetic.
According to Newtab-22, Sea Stone could become a sustainable alternative to concrete in the design of small-scale products, as the two materials share similar properties. This is because seashells are rich in calcium carbonate, otherwise known as limestone, which is used to make cement – a key ingredient of concrete. The material is currently being developed further for commercial purposes and has so far been used to make products such as decorative tiles, tabletops, and vases.