Plastics Energy and Greenhouse Gas Savings Using Housewrap Final Report

This study is an analysis of the energy savings and related reduction in greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the use of an exterior barrier to airflow applied to single family houses in the U.S. These products are commonly called housewraps, and are quite effective at reducing air infiltration. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has determined that about one-half of all energy used in heating and cooling homes results from the air infiltrating from the outside of a house to the inside. Thus, the blocking of that infiltration can produce significant reductions of energy use and associated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. However, this must be balanced against the energy and GHG emissions associated with the manufacture and installation of the housewrap products. This study is a “life cycle” inventory applied to put all of these issues into perspective.