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Green Building & Sustainable Development

Sustainable Vinyl Featured at Green Building Expo

Vinyl's numerous energy-saving, environmental and health benefits are on display this week at the nation's principal green building expo.

The three-day GreenBuild International Conference & Expo in Denver features green and sustainable products ranging from non-slip flooring made from 100 percent recycled vinyl to insulated vinyl forming systems for building foundations, energy-saving vinyl windows and roofing, and huge PVC sewer pipes made with recycled content.

Architects and designers are increasingly finding that vinyl's infinite flexibility, durability and well-established, energy-saving qualities represent one of the most effective ways of meeting the evolving standards for green buildings, noted Vinyl Institute president Tim Burns.

An increasing number of home-building and major construction products are also now using recycled vinyl, Burns said. The Plastic Pipe and Fittings Association booth at GreenBuild features sections of sewer pipe made with post-consumer vinyl content, including recycled vinyl siding.

Oscoda Plastics of Oscoda, Mich., is showing its "Protect-All" slip- resistant, fire and water resistant specialty flooring made from 100 percent recycled vinyl. Protect-All flooring resists mildew and other bacterial growth and is non-corrosive, even when exposed to chemicals or grease.

John Rouse, national sales manager of Oscoda Plastics, said the company recycled six million pounds of post-industrial vinyl from the automotive and roofing industries last year alone to produce Protect-All flooring. The non- slip flooring is ideal, he said, for building entrances, gymnasiums, locker rooms, industrial kitchens, pool decks and automotive service garages.

Also of special interest to builders at this year's expo is Energy Edge, the new, energy-saving vinyl insulated edge forming system for slab construction. Made by Energy Edge of Wichita, Kan., the system saves time and labor, conserves natural resources and helps buildings qualify for the Green Building Council's LEED points, noted vice president Casey Barbour.

"We are being sought out by every aspect of the building industry because we are the first to provide a product that effectively and efficiently insulates the slab edge, completing the building envelope and meeting code," she said. Building and home owners not only enjoy significant energy savings, but a reduction in molds, mites and mildews that often build up in traditional floors.

Energy Edge was formally introduced at the World of Concrete in January of this year.

Learn more about vinyl from The Vinyl Institute.

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