By Francesca Dunbar, Group Marketing Director, McWane Plumbing Group The “green and sustainable” building movement has evolved from a marginal movement to fully evolving as an acceptable mainstream force. The increased adoption of sustainable building materials is having a positive impact as they have many attributes including; increasing energy efficiency, ensuring life safety and even Read more
By Francesca Dunbar, Group Marketing Director, McWane Plumbing Group
The “green and sustainable” building movement has evolved from a marginal movement to fully evolving as an acceptable mainstream force. The increased adoption of sustainable building materials is having a positive impact as they have many attributes including; increasing energy efficiency, ensuring life safety and even improving building air quality. Companies are continuously looking for ways to be “green” and the appearance to be friendlier to the environment. It’s just good business!
For many, “green” conjures up visions of the hippie counter culture movement with granola eating tree-huggers that adorn themselves with tie-dyed t-shirts and ugly sandals. No offense to those that live this lifestyle as they spurred the “green” movement and were way ahead of the curve as visionaries. Now, it’s widely acceptable to embrace our inner “GREENIE” in business by adopting strategies for a long-term sustainability plan. The scrap metal dealers also saw the future in sustainability as they carefully put in place a large network of yards to ensure a steady stream of scrap supply. Not only has the general public demanded change but the market has been the driving force in green and sustainable building practice. In the recent past, a number of state and local governments began to adopt regulations and initiatives focusing on green and sustainable building where new codes and laws have been put in place such as the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA 2007). But there are also standards such as ASTM E2432 Standard Guide for the General Principles of Sustainability Relative to Building and ASHRAE 189.1 Standard for Design of Green Building – these codes and standards ensure for optimization of energy use, building space and indoor environmental quality (IEQ). It is government regulation that will push this movement forward. Now, Builders, Developers and Contractors are taking a look at re-evaluating building materials and opting to use sustainable products that are not only non-toxic, but also non-combustible.
This is something companies such as AB&I Foundry, a leading American producer of cast iron pipe and fittings, has been doing for decades. Their products are made from 100-percent post-consumer scrap metal and even used pipe and fittings are recyclable bringing it back full-circle. They are basically a GIANT recycler diverting discarded waste such as engine blocks, wheels, and other scrap metals and then melt it in their cupola in order to make cast iron pipe and fittings. These materials otherwise would have ended up in landfills. There are significant advantages to recycling and repurposing metals as it can be sourced within 50-miles of the foundry and AB&I was one of the earliest pioneers of the upcycling movement. The advantages of metallic piping far outweighs the perceived benefits of low-cost plastic as cast iron is durable, it’s non-combustible and it’s 100% recyclable at the end of service life. The advantages of metallic piping far outweighs the perceived benefits of low-cost plastic as cast iron is durable, it’s non-combustible and it’s 100% recyclable at the end of service life. Whereas plastics are sourced from petroleum, continuously off-gas toxins and are combustible releasing toxins when burned.
The plumbing industry had a motto with the iconic plumber silhouetted by the moon “The Plumber Protects the Health of the Nation” – this is true as the lack of sanitation brought disease wiping out hundreds of thousands of people throughout history. The protection and conservation of water is paramount to today’s society and building owners and developers have implemented water efficiencies from low flow toilets to water efficient fixtures. Also measures are being taken to reclaim graywater through recovery systems using the non-potable water for toilet flushing and landscape irrigation.
Science is a driving factor in identifying ways to produce better materials. There’s a project called Materials for Life (M4L), researchers from the School of Engineering at the University of Cardiff, in Wales are undergoing tests for self-healing concrete technologies where shape-memory polymers can be activated by electrical current, one with healing agents made from both inorganic and organic compounds and another with capsules containing bacterial and healing agents. The goal is to develop an autonomous infrastructure for roads, tunnels, bridges and buildings that can self-repair without human intervention. A sort of A.I. for building materials – the creation of sustainable and resilient systems that continually monitor, regulate, and adapt and then repair themselves.
The construction of healthier buildings is driving owners and developers as they are realizing the benefits of healthier building and the attraction for occupants that are increasingly more aware of their environment. There are simple ways to eliminate the presence of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in building products that benefit not only occupants, but in a fire also reduce exposure to first responders. It’s no coincidence that schools and high-rise buildings use cast iron soil pipe and fittings for the drain, waste and vent plumbing systems as plastic is a known toxic product and life safety is paramount.
Products include; wall coverings, flooring and even upholstered furnishings. Many products continue to off-gas vapors and gases and these can affect occupants’ health from respiratory tract issues, headaches and dizziness and even long-term exposure that can cause organ damage. Green is not a fade, it’s a movement that is environmentally friendly and is here to stay. There was a movement to “get the lead out” of plumbing fixtures that was a known cause to contaminating drinking water.
Furthermore, In order to create more transparency in the manufacturing of building products, programs have been developed to declare that products meet certain environmental standards – Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) and Health Product Declarations (HPD). They concentrate on disclosing the product’s list of ingredients or recipe. While EPDs focus on the impact of the product on the environment from cradle to grave in their lifecycle. The EPDs focus on the Life Cycle Assessment or (LCA).
In 2014, the WELL Building Standard was launched with the mission to enhance the health and well-being of building occupants. This newly implemented standard not only measures, certifies and monitors occupant health and well-being but it also addresses key areas including; air, water, nourishment, light, fitness and comfort — taking the green and sustainable practices to their highest level. In a recent study conducted by Booz Allen Hamilton for the USGBC, they expect green construction spending to increase from $150.6 billion in 2015 to $224.4 billion in 2018. The study also predicts that between 2015 and 2018, green construction will generate $303.4 billion in Gross Domestic Product (GDP), support 3.9 million jobs and provide $268.4 billion in labor earnings.
Now, isn’t it time to embrace the “green” movement and start reducing the toxic load of buildings?
About Francesca Dunbar
Francesca has been the Group Marketing Director of McWane Plumbing Group since 2012. She has a diverse background building and promoting companies with innovative and strategic leadership. In 2016 she was recognized as Industry Leading Ladies. She has spent decades building a respected reputation with major corporations and non-profit foundations. Her roots were deep in leadership for a high-tech industry before departing corporate life in 2000 to launch her marketing consulting career. She is also passionate about giving back and served on several non-profit foundation boards. As an officer on the board of directors for The National Brain Tumor Foundation, she was an integral member of the team that led a successful merger. Dunbar is also a published writer of industry articles and technical papers, and previously a contributing editor for a lifestyle magazine. Dunbar is a member of ASA, American Society of Plumbing Engineers and trained Installer of fire protection products.
Sloan announces the release of a white paper, Gaining Perspective on Water Efficiency Through LEED v4.0, discussing and clarifying the significant modifications in the water efficiency category pertaining to indoor water use. “The Water Efficiency credit category in LEED v4 is critical as it addresses not only the initial design and construction of the building Read more
Sloan announces the release of a white paper, Gaining Perspective on Water Efficiency Through LEED v4.0, discussing and clarifying the significant modifications in the water efficiency category pertaining to indoor water use.
“The Water Efficiency credit category in LEED v4 is critical as it addresses not only the initial design and construction of the building, but also provides a foundation for the building’s future water use,” says Mike Gipson, Flushometer Product Line Manager for Sloan. “As such, Sloan is in a position to provide solutions to reach sustainability without sacrificing performance.”
The white paper reviews the changes made from LEED 2009 to LEED v4 and presents the difference in an easy-to-understand table. Further explanation notes the differentiating factor from previous versions of LEED, which is the requirement to use products certified under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) WaterSense® program. This requirement applies to the prerequisite and carries over the indoor water reduction credit criteria.
The white paper continues to provide high-efficiency solutions for a variety of situations. Sloan’s position is that regardless of which High-Efficiency Toilet (HET) is chosen, the best case scenario is achieved when the flushometer and fixture are optimized to work together in order to guarantee the flush volume of the flushometer is reached. Flushometers and vitreous china fixtures are sold both separately and as packaged products from many manufacturers, and professionals need to choose which approach best suits their needs.
To help you navigate through your LEED v4 Water Efficiency criteria, download a PDF of the Gaining Perspective on Water Efficiency Through LEED v4.0 white paper at http://www.sloanvalve.com/%5CWhitePapers%5CSLV3685_LEED_v4_White_Paper_final_042315.pdf
For more information, contact: Sloan Valve Company, 10500 Seymour Avenue, Franklin Park, IL 60131, visit www.sloanvalve.com, call 800-9-VALVE-9 (800-982-5839) or fax 800-501-3989.
Chatham University’s, an internationally recognized leader in sustainability, Eden Hall Campus is the first in the world built from the ground up for the study of sustainable living, learning and development and using the latest in environmentally responsible technology, design and innovation. Eden Hall, designed to accommodate 1,500 students, is self-sustaining in every way Read more
Chatham University’s, an internationally recognized leader in sustainability, Eden Hall Campus is the first in the world built from the ground up for the study of sustainable living, learning and development and using the latest in environmentally responsible technology, design and innovation. Eden Hall, designed to accommodate 1,500 students, is self-sustaining in every way by producing zero carbon emissions and more energy than it consumes.
“We congratulate Chatham University and its pioneering efforts, the first in the world from the ground up for the study of sustainability, to minimize energy consumption throughout the campus for their “zero energy” project,” says Matthew Beasley, director of sales for Wilo USA. “We are proud to be a part of this ground breaking endeavor with our adjustable energy-saving Wilo Stratos Class A pumps with EC motors.”
“Pumps often go unnoticed in the pursuit of energy savings, using high-efficiency pumps like Wilo’s can yield energy-savings of 80% or more. Important when you realize pumps can account for 20% or more of a building’s electrical energy usage,” says Beasley.
“Furthermore our Energy Solutions Division can help colleges like Chatham save energy by providing energy assessments, utility rebates, incentive services, life cycle cost analysis, ROI, and remote monitoring and service contracts. We back up our confidence in our pumps with an industry-leading four-year warranty,” concludes Beasley.
Wilo Stratos Commercial High-Efficiency Circulators powered by EC motor technology deliver up to 285 USGPM while reducing energy consumption up to 80%. Stratos is the world’s first high-efficiency circulators. Operation is simple: a “red button” controls all essential functions. The Stratos is the first electronically controlled wet-rotor circulator for heating that is also designed to avoid condensate, making it available as part of a cooling water systems for air conditioning and industrial refrigeration.
(Uponor) announced it has purchased a minority position in Upstream Technologies, a New Brighton, Minn.-based company. Upstream Technologies is involved in the stormwater management market and has introduced innovative products that significantly improve process and efficiency in these areas. The opportunity came to Uponor through its recently launched subsidiary Uponor Innovations LLC. “We are excited Read more
(Uponor) announced it has purchased a minority position in Upstream Technologies, a New Brighton, Minn.-based company.
Upstream Technologies is involved in the stormwater management market and has introduced innovative products that significantly improve process and efficiency in these areas. The opportunity came to Uponor through its recently launched subsidiary Uponor Innovations LLC.
“We are excited about this opportunity and although it is outside Uponor’s core strategic focus, Upstream Technologies’ products align with our sustainability goals and our vision of enriching people’s way of life,” says Bill Gray, president, Uponor North America. “Uponor believes companies play a special role in leading sustainability initiatives by producing products and services that make it convenient, affordable and effective to do the right things for the environment.”
One of Upstream Technologies’ products to make waterways clean in an affordable way is the SAFL Baffle. Developed out of the University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering’s St. Anthony Falls Laboratory (SAFL), this product keeps sediment pollution out of lakes, rivers and oceans.
“Urban runoff hits the road, goes into the storm sewers and ends up in receiving water bodies such as lakes and rivers,” says John Gulliver, a professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering and co-inventor of the SAFL Baffle. “Cities are required to treat urban runoff and are trying to figure out how to deal with this in times of limited funding.”
Jay Schrankler, director of the University of Minnesota Office for Technology Commercialization, says, “Uponor’s commitment to University of Minnesota start-up licensee Upstream Technologies further cements the SAFL Baffle’s place as an affordable tool to keep our waterways clean.”
A.J. Schwidder, CEO of Upstream Technologies, is very excited with Uponor’s investment in the company. “Uponor has a reputation of creating innovative and green products to save energy and ensure safe water — with a focus on reducing our carbon and water footprint locally and globally,” he says. “Their investment is an endorsement of our products, our company and our vision of improving the quality of our water in an affordable way.
The Upstream Technologies story has been an outstanding example of the good that can come from government, academic and corporate collaboration. “Uponor’s commitment to Upstream, along with the Minnesota Department of Transportation and the University of Minnesota’s St. Anthony Falls Laboratory, makes them a member of a group dedicated to improving our waterways,” Schrankler says. “With Upstream and Uponor behind the SAFL Baffle technology, we believe adoption will be accelerated for the good of our environment.”
Greensource CDi Series SM Model heat pumps available in packaged & split systems Split models separate condenser & fan coil for application flexibility Up to 33 EER (Part Load) – 24 EER (Full Load) with split model Condenser section can be installed outside the home The Bosch Greensource CDi Series SM Model residential geothermal heat pump Read more
- Greensource CDi Series SM Model heat pumps available in packaged & split systems
- Split models separate condenser & fan coil for application flexibility
- Up to 33 EER (Part Load) – 24 EER (Full Load) with split model
- Condenser section can be installed outside the home
The Bosch Greensource CDi Series SM Model residential geothermal heat pump is now available in a split system for applications seeking to separate the condenser unit from the fan coil.
A split system allows the installer to separate the condenser section up to 75 feet away from the fan coil section to isolate sound, vibration and unwanted heat from the conditioned space. The condenser may be located indoors or outdoors.
The highly efficient CDi Series SM Split Model geothermal heat pump system comes equipped with Bosch’s commitment to quality, including up to 33.0 EER (part load) and up to 24.0 EER (full load) GWHP. Greensource CDi Series SM split models use a Bosch communicating thermostat that displays alerts and controls not only air temperature but also humidity levels.
Greensource CDi Series heat pumps – packaged and split models – are designed and built in Bosch’s ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 certified facilities in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. They serve as a platform for renewable energy products in a residential comfort control system.
Both packaged and split models are ENERGY STAR rated and are awarded
ENERGY STAR 2014 Most Efficient product recognition. The new CDi Series meets ENERGY STAR Tier 3 requirements, making it eligible for up to a 30% tax credit. (See BoschGeo.com for details.)
Advantages for the installer include configurability – return air can be customized for the job, either left side, right side, or back or top of unit.
Encased in a white prepainted steel cabinet, each unit is equipped with scroll compressor technology for two-stage operation, a patent pending floating base pan, stainless steel drain pan, and an evaporator coil with tin-plated hair pins for durability and reliability. With an operating sound level as low as 52 dB, CDi Series units are some of the quietest in the industry.
Bosch provides 10-year parts and labor limited warranties on the CDi Series SM Model and split systems.