The following green-building news and information resources are provided by the Plastics Division
of the American Chemistry Council (ACC):
ACC News Releases/Blog Posts and Related Media Coverage:
Harvest Home: DC’s Submission For the 2013 Solar Decathlon
Vikings Stadium: Big, Bold, Glassy
New Interactive Case Studies Showcase the Chemistry Driving U.S. Energy Efficiency
Energy-Conscious Homeowners Choose Spray Polyurethane Foam
Perot Museum Achieves Green Globes Highest Possible Ranking for Sustainable Building Design
Fund A House That Shapeshifts With the Seasons
House Subcommittee Highlights Innovations Driving Greater Energy Efficiency
Chemistry Propels States in an "Energy Efficiency Race to the Top"
3D-Printed House Can Be Assembled in Just One Day
Free Spray Polyurethane Foam Health and Safety Training Programs Available in Spanish
ACC Supports Alliance Commission’s Goal of Doubling Energy Productivity by 2030
Energy Savings Found From Spray Foam in Side-by-Side Construction
As the use of spray polyurethane foam (SPF) insulation is increasing in both new and existing homes, prospective users often ask the question: “How much can SPF impact my heating and cooling costs?”
This paper summarizes a recent study and found that the use of SPF to create unvented attics can improve air-sealing and significantly reduce energy usage, which in turn reduces heating and cooling cost.
What is a Green Building?
Sustainable or “green building” design and construction is the opportunity to use our resources more efficiently while creating healthier and more energy-efficient homes. Although there is no magic formula, success comes in the form of leaving a lighter footprint on the environment through conservation of resources, while at the same time balancing energy-efficient, cost-effective, low-maintenance products for our construction needs. Click here to learn more about Green Building Guiding Principles. In other words, green design involves finding the delicate balance between homebuilding and the sustainable environment.
Watch Video on Plastics, Insulation, and Home Energy Efficiency
Jack Armstrong of BASF’s Global Building Materials, shows how energy efficiency can be enhanced by smart uses of the many varieties of plastic insulations, sealants, stabilization foams, window glazing, frame cladding and much more. Originally given at a press Conference on the Mall in Washington, DC for the Solar Decathlon, the subject matter goes to the heart of Near Zero Energy Homes.
How to Build Small Affordable Houses That Use 30% Less Total Energy in the Mixed-Humid Climate, Jeff Christian, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
This report describes how to build a high performance affordable house that will achieve 30% whole house energy savings using proven, commercially available technologies in the mixed-humid climate region.
Saving Energy Through High Performance Buildings
Eco-label rating systems based on checklists like Green Globes and LEED can detract from measures that will result in significant building energy savings performance. As a result, some eco-labeled buildings miss the mark in terms of improved and sustained energy efficiency performance.
Impacts of New ASHRAE Standards on Energy Usage and the Environment
A delay in implementing the ASHRAE 90.1-2010P requirements until 2015 would result in losing 1,900 trillion Btu in energy savings (equivalent of 328 million barrels of crude oil) and releasing of 134 million metric tons of CO2-eq. (equivalent to annual CO2 emissions from 29 coal-fired power plants).
Rigorous quantitative Whole Building Energy Analysis and Life Cycle Assessment methodology in this study shows how prompt adoption and enforcement of these enhanced standards will significantly reduce U.S. energy consumption and avoid substantive greenhouse gas emissions. Polyurethane insulation technology—if put in place—can help make these standards and requirements attainable.
290 Million Tons Of CO2 Saved Through Plastic Insulation
Plastics insulation uses a tiny amount of energy in its production compared to the savings made over its life cycle. Over its complete life time, 290 million tonnes of CO2 were saved through the plastic insulation installed in the EU in 2004—with only 1% of CO2 created during production. The production energy required to make one insulation panel is recovered after four months of use in a house.
Plastic Insulation: A Sustainable Solution
The building and construction industry has a major role to play in reducing energy use and hence the emission of carbon dioxide resulting from fossil fuel generation of energy. Over its lifetime, plastic insulation saves more than 200 times the energy used in its manufacture, and its very high thermal efficiency also adds to savings.
Energy and Climate Solutions Through American Chemistry
Building insulation materials save as much as 40 BTUs of energy for every BTU of energy consumed to make the material. House wraps save 360 BTUs of energy for every BTU used to make the material, and foam insulation can make a home up to 70% more energy efficient.