Category Archives: Materials

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Green Materials Report – Wall Coverings

Bark House Poplar Bark Panels

This post is part of the Green Materials Report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes it green, and any green product certifications that it has earned.  We…

Fiberglass Windows Are More Energy Efficient

For making energy efficient windows, fiberglass composites offer many advantages over wood, aluminum and vinyl. Wood warps and rots over time, allowing air infiltration that undermines the insulating power of the glass. Aluminum conducts heat and cold into the interior of buildings. And vinyl can weaken with age leading to a breakdown in insulating power. Fiberglass…

Pre-Cut Steel Buildings Snap Together Like Legos

Architects admire steel framed house

The flexibility and simplicity of steel framing systems draws many clients because there are no interior load-bearing walls, so remodeling or reconfiguring rooms when needs change is a snap. “When children leave at 28, you can easily knock down walls.  And when they return at 32 you can erect them again,” BONE founder and president…

Which Is More Green – SFI or FSC Lumber?

The two main sustainable forestry certification programs (Sustainable Forestry Initiative, SFI, and Forest Stewardship Council, FSC) have been fighting for years to determine which is better.  SFI has struggled to gain a foothold in the industry, and has been working to be approved by the US Green Building Council’s LEED green building rating system.  In an…

Waxed Cardboard Insulation Comes From Produce Boxes

Students at Portland State University have developed a new insulation material made from shredded waxed cardboard produce boxes.  The insulation helps local grocery stores sustainably dispose of the boxes and could provide low-cost energy savings. PSU assistant architecture professor Margarette Leite heard that many local grocery stores were looking for a way to sustainably dispose…

Bamboo, Plastic Bottles Make Eco-Friendly Greenhouse

Hanoi architecture firm 1+1>2, in collaboration with Action For The City, has designed an eco-friendly greenhouse that protects growing plants from the elements, provides a place for farmers to rest and a offers a creative play space for children to learn more about their environment. It also offers a break from the visual sameness of…

Green Materials Report – Low VOC Paint

low voc paint

This post is part of the Green Materials Report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes it green, and any green product certifications that it has earned.  We…

Sustainable Forestry Initiative Recognized By BREEAM

Sustainable Forestry Initiative lumber

The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) has been recognized by green building rating system BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) for its ability to allow the construction industry to responsibly source forest products. Their efforts to make one of the greenest building elements- wood!- even greener are definitely worth taking notice of! According to the…

Green Materials Report – Wood

This post is part of the green materials report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes green materials green, and any green product certifications that it has earned. …

Green Materials Report – Smog Eating Roof Tiles

This post is part of the green materials report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes green materials green, and any green product certifications that it has earned. …

Green Materials Report – Fiberglass Insulation

Fiberglass insulation from Owens Corning

This post is part of the green materials report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes green materials green, and any green product certifications that it has earned. …

Green Materials Report: Metal Roofing

Metal roofing

This post is part of the Green Materials Report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes it green, and any green product certifications that it has earned.  We…

Green Materials Report: Cork Flooring

Cork flooring

This post is part of the Green Materials Report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes it green, and any green product certifications that it has earned.  We…

Exterior Sheathing System Improves Energy Efficiency

C-SIS exterior sheathing system

Composite Panel Building Systems announced the introduction of a new sheathing system that can improve the energy efficiency of existing buildings and homes, as well as new construction projects.  The C-SIS exterior sheathing system combines insulation, an air/water barrier, structural components, and a water drainage plane into a compact panel that can be installed easily…

Green Materials Report – Air Cleaning Drywall

CertainTeed air cleaning drywall

This post is part of the Green Materials Report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes it green, and any green product certifications that it has earned.  We…

Treehouse in Memorial City, Both are More than a Name Suggests

As cities re-develop and re-define themselves in new urban and sustainable ways, mixed-used mini-cities are becoming popular oasises in the midst of traditional metropolitan areas. In Houston, Texas, one of such, ‘city-with-in-a-city’ exists and is called Memorial City. It is 7.6 million SF of a place that intertwines the living, shopping, working and play parts…

Green Materials Report: Wool Carpet

Wool carpet

This post is part of the Green Materials Report series.  GBE is providing information on various building materials and what makes them green.  Each post focuses on one material.  We will be looking at the ingredients in the material, how it is used, what makes it green, and any green product certifications that it has earned.  We…

Cradle to Cradle Founder Addresses PVC’s Future

PVC vinyl flooring tile

Dr. Michael Braungart, scientific director and founder of the Environmental Protection & Encouragement Agency (EPEA) and co-founder of Cradle to Cradle (C2C) design framework, spoke recently at a seminar during the NeoCon Design Expo and Conference in Chicago. The conference, which was attended by several leading architecture and design professionals, provided a platform for Dr. Braungart to explain the…