An EPD is an internationally recognized, standardized tool that reports the environmental impact of goods or services.
An industry first for fiberglass building insulation in North America, the EPDs describe the environmental impact of the insulation products based upon an established set of product category rules and independently verified life cycle assessment (LCA) data from cradle-to-grave. Through the LCA process, products are evaluated on several parameters including raw materials production and transportation, product manufacturing and plant operations, product packaging, transportation and distribution of the insulation products, and end of life impact.
"The UL-certified EPDs for our EcoTouch® Unfaced and Kraft-Faced Batts and Unbonded LooseFill Insulation reflect our commitment to sustainability and our pledge to be transparent about our products' environmental performance through certification by credible third parties," said Gale Tedhams, director of sustainability for Owens Corning. "The EPDs are a valuable tool, providing the next-level of product information for architects, builders and specifiers to help them meet certain criteria for green building and make sustainable purchasing decisions."
The Owens Corning EPDs confirm how insulation is a key contributor to a building's overall energy-efficiency, helping to reduce the energy required to maintain a comfortable living or work environment. Typically, a pound of insulation saves 12 times as much energy in its first year in place as the energy used to produce it. That means the energy consumed during manufacturing is saved during the first four to five weeks of product use.
The Owens Corning EPDs confirm those energy efficiencies by calculating the environmental impact of the different ingredients and life cycle stages of the insulation products, including the energy consumed and greenhouse gas missions associated with each stage.
For example, the EPD for EcoTouch® Unfaced Insulation confirms that the energy saved for a properly insulated home in Chicago over a non-insulated home results in a 25.4-day payback, and a home in Arizona has a 41.4-day payback for the energy burden associated with not only the manufacturing of the product, but also the harvest of raw materials, transport and disposal. The insulation continues to save that amount of energy throughout the life of the home or building in which it is installed.
In addition to energy impact and global warming potential, other information reported in the EPD includes the effects on air quality through ozone depletion or smog creation; water use and the impact on waterways via eutrophication and acidification; and a description of the process and materials in the manufacturing of fiberglass insulation.
"EPDs help architects, designers, specifiers, and other purchasers make more informed purchasing decisions by providing them with the full extent of a product's environmental impacts," said Paul Firth, EPD product manager at UL Environment. "We applaud Owens Corning for demonstrating their commitment to transparency and disclosure."
Owens Corning EPD Insulation Offerings
EcoTouch® PINK® FIBERGLAS™ Insulation with PureFiber® Technology is ideal for a wide range of exterior wall, roofing and ceiling applications for both residential and commercial installations. The product is made up of more than 99 percent natural ingredients1 and has been certified under the USDA BioPreferred® label program. Owens Corning Unbonded LooseFill is utilized in multiple applications, including walls, attics, cathedral ceilings and floors in new construction and retrofit applications.
Both Owens Corning EcoTouch® Insulation and Unbonded LooseFill are verified formaldehyde-free2, are third-party certified for recycled content3, and are GREENGUARD® Children and Schools Certified(SM) 4. Both products help contribute to criteria for homes and buildings to achieve green building certifications including U.S. Green Building Council LEED®, NAHB Green Building Standard and ENERGY STAR® Qualified Homes.
To learn more about EcoTouch® PINK® FIBERGLAS™ Insulation with PureFiber® Technology, Unbonded LooseFill Insulation and the entire selection of building products from Owens Corning, visit booth #4247N during the 2012 Greenbuild® International Conference and Expo. For more information about Owens Corning's EPDs, visit http://sustainability.owenscorning.com/contents/products/Life-Cycle-Assessment-and-Product-Evaluation/.
For more information about Owens Corning's products and programs, go to www.OwensCorning.com or call 1-800-GET-PINK®.
About Owens Corning
Owens Corning (NYSE: OC) is a leading global producer of residential and commercial building materials, glass-fiber reinforcements and engineered materials for composite systems. A Fortune® 500 company for 58 consecutive years, Owens Corning is committed to driving sustainability by delivering solutions, transforming markets and enhancing lives. Founded in 1938, Owens Corning is a market-leading innovator of glass-fiber technology with sales of $5.3 billion in 2011 and about 15,000 employees in 28 countries on five continents. Additional information is available at www.owenscorning.com.
1 Unfaced insulation is made with a minimum of 99 percent by weight natural materials consisting of minerals and plant-based compounds.
2 Owens Corning EcoTouch® PINK® FIBERGLAS™ Insulation with PureFiber® Technology is verified to be formaldehyde-free by the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute.
3 EcoTouch® Insulation is certified by Scientific Certifications Systems to have a minimum of 58 percent recycled glass content, with at least 36 percent post-consumer recycled and the balance pre-consumer recycled glass content. Product recycle content for Unbonded Loosefill for all North American facilities as certified by SCS Scientific Certification Systems is 65 percent minimum overall and 41 percent from post-consumer.
4 GREENGUARD Children & Schools Certified(SM): A product certification program for low-emitting building materials, furniture, finishes, cleaning products, electronics and consumer products used in environments where children and other sensitive populations spend extended periods of time. All GREENGUARD Children & Schools Certified products meet the stringent GREENGUARD Children & Schools Certification requirements, including limits outlined in California's Department of Public Health Services Standard Practice for Specification Section 01350, and undergo both annual re-certification and quarterly quality monitoring to ensure ongoing compliance.