Since 2008, the global economy has sputtered along. Jobs are scarce, cost of living is rising and millions of people are left to figure out how to maintain their quality of life. This task becomes particularly difficult if one is a believer in the green movement. In the presence of such tricky circumstances, Shawn Turner, owner of Able Home Performance, a small business specializing in energy efficiency and weatherization, chose to incorporate sustainable elements on his own home renovation in Seattle. A few years of recession can turn many into do-it-yourselfers. And, when it comes to green renovations in the home, a hands-on experience from a professional in the field is certainly an interesting project to follow. While the home is still very much a work in progress, Turner was kind enough to offer a list of eco-friendly products that he installed in his home. In the “recycled materials” department, Turner used Bedrock Industries glass tiles in the bathrooms. Bedrock’s tiles are pigment-free and 100% recycled. In fact, for Turner, there couldn’t have been a more eco-friendly option, since Bedrock is also based in Seattle. Bedrock goes further, too — as any truly sustainable business should — by not just using green-themed materials, but by heavily investing in the community as well. The company website offers the following:
We have established and continue to operate several community-based programs including a bottle drive, student tours of our plant and a special bottle drive for the parents and students of a local elementary school. Earnings from the school drive have helped to pay for student field trips and other educational activities.In the coming months, weatherization is key in the notoriously drippy Pacific Northwest, so it seems a no-brainer that Turner would support housing features that both protect from the elements and save energy (and money) in the process. In this manner, Turner decided to install an aluminum roof from Classic Metal Roofing Systems. Sure, that’s not wildly innovative in anyone’s book, but much of the green wave is actually founded on old, reliable technologies that promote efficiency and longevity. I have touched on the boundless environmental benefits of aluminum before, and yet again, this endlessly recyclable metal has made its way into the spotlight. Due to its malleability, aluminum can be stamped, shaped or cut to look like almost anything else. For Turner, this came in handy in making it looking like wooden shakes. The sustainability of a long-lasting aluminum roof is even addressed in Classic Metal Roofing Systems’ Frequently Asked Questions. See FAQ #9. In addition to the recycled tiles and aluminum roof, Turner applied a host of other ecologically sensitive materials — too many to detail, in fact. As an abbreviated list, he also utilized formaldehyde-free molding, low- or no-volatile organic compound paints, structurally insulated panels, soy-based foam insulation, renewable bamboo flooring and more. All in all, Turner decidedly practiced what he preached when remodeling his home.
For many, the “green” option when making purchases is cost prohibitive. Fortunately, though, many companies are recognizing the growing importance (and market interest) of products and technologies that help, rather than hurt, the natural environment.