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Some materials provide a better alternative in an application dominated by products for which there are concerns about toxic constituents, intermediaries, or by-products. With the panoply of products made with polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame retardants, some products are green simply because they provide an alternative. Examples of this are natural wall coverings, drain and vent piping, and roofing membranes. Some green products are free of hazards common to the product category; for example, LED lighting is inherently free of the mercury found in fluorescent lighting sources.

However, it’s worth noting that without transparency about actual ingredients, there’s no guarantee that a product won’t have less common or less well-known hazards that the manufacturer isn’t talking about. We use Pharos’s Chemical and Material Library to assess less well-known hazards, and we encourage manufacturers to review the hazardous properties of all chemicals they use and seek out safer materials.

Some materials provide a better alternative in an application dominated by products for which there are concerns about toxic constituents, intermediaries, or by-products. With the panoply of products made with polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame retardants, some products are green simply because they provide an alternative. Examples of this are natural wall coverings, drain and vent piping, and roofing membranes. Some green products are free of hazards common to the product category; for example, LED lighting is inherently free of the mercury found in fluorescent lighting sources.

However, it’s worth noting that without transparency about actual ingredients, there’s no guarantee that a product won’t have less common or less well-known hazards that the manufacturer isn’t talking about. We use Pharos’s Chemical and Material Library to assess less well-known hazards, and we encourage manufacturers to review the hazardous properties of all chemicals they use and seek out safer materials.

  • Ekla Home Furnishings
  • Ekla Home Furnishings
  • Ekla Home
  • Ekla Home Furnishings
    Ekla Home
    Ekla Home’s Organic sofas, chairs, and beds are made with FSC-certified wood; certified organic natural latex, wool, and cotton; and zero-VOC finishes. Ekla Home’s Organic textiles are from O Ecotextiles and most are either Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) or Oeko Tex certified, according to the company. These furnishings contain no chemical flame retardants.
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  • Fixit 222 Insulating Plaster
  • Fixit 222 Insulating Plaster
  • Fixit, AG
  • Fixit 222 Insulating Plaster
    Fixit, AG
    Fixit 222 is an insulating, lime plaster with granulized silica aerogel. It can be sprayed or troweled onto a wall and provides an insulating value of R-5.15 per inch (0.028 W/mK). Fixit 222 is permeable to water vapor and can be used indoors or, if coated with a harder surface plaster, used on the exterior as a stucco cladding. The composition is silica aerogel granulate, lightweight mineral aggregate, natural hydraulic lime, chromate-free white cement, and white calcium hydroxide (slaked lime). As a 100% inorganic material, Fixit is nonflammable without added flame retardants. Fixit is not currently distributed in North America.
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  • Gutex Ultratherm Roof Insulation and Underlayment
  • Gutex Ultratherm Roof Insulation and Underlayment
  • Four Seven Five
  • Gutex Ultratherm Roof Insulation and Underlayment
    Four Seven Five
    Ultratherm is a moisture-resistant, rigid roof insulation and underlayment made from 95% wood fiber, 4% polyurethane binders, and 0.5% paraffin. Manufactured in Germany, these panels are engineered with tongue and groove edges to improve weather resistance and ease of installation. These panels act as a subroof for pitches greater than 15° without need for taping the tongue and groove or sealing nails, according to the company. The 2-3/8"-thick, 86.6"-long, 29.5"-wide panels have an R-value of 3.4 per inch and a perm rating of 18. Custom sizes are available.
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  • Gutex Multitherm Weather Resistant Wood Insulation
  • Gutex Multitherm Weather Resistant Wood Insulation
  • Four Seven Five
  • Gutex Multitherm Weather Resistant Wood Insulation
    Four Seven Five
    Multitherm is a moisture-resistant, breathable, rigid insulation and weather-resistive-barrier made from 95% wood fiber, 4% polyurethane binders, and 0.5% paraffin. Manufactured in Germany, these panels are intended for use on exterior walls under rainscreens, and are engineered with tongue and groove edges to improve weather resistance and ease installation, since the panels do not have to line up with studs. The 1-9/16"-thick, 43.3"-long, 31.5"-wide panels have an R-value of 3.7 per inch (R-5.5 per panel) and a perm rating of 27. Custom sizes are also available.
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  • Ecocell Cellulose Batts and Blanket Insulation
  • Ecocell Cellulose Batts and Blanket Insulation
  • Cellulose Material Solutions
  • Ecocell Cellulose Batts and Blanket Insulation
    Cellulose Material Solutions
    Cellulose Material Solutions offers Ecocell batts and blankets that are made of 60% cellulose from recycled paper, along with cotton, and jute with a polyethylene binder. Ecocell achieves a Class A fire rating (ASTM E-84 Standard) using borates, which also prevent pest intrusion. Ecocell blankets are R-3.7 while the batts are R-3.6, with a density of 2.5 pcf. The batts also achieve an acoustical rating of STC 50. Batts are available in 16" and 24" widths (0.4m and 0.6m) and 94" and 96" (2.4m) lengths. Blankets are 48" x 96" (1.2m x 2.4m) or 48" x 108" (1.2m x 2.7m).
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  • Purline Eco Resilient Flooring
  • Purline Eco Resilient Flooring
  • Wineo
  • Purline Eco Resilient Flooring
    Wineo
    Purline Eco is a resilient flooring product that is free of chlorine, solvents, and toxic phthalate plasticizers. Rapeseed and castor oils are used as plasticizers to make the polyurethane permanently elastic. Purline is suitable for heavy industrial applications with a Wear Class of 43. The wear layer is antistatic, antimicrobial, chemically resistant, and a fleece backing is compatible with traditional adhesives for installation. The product is certified Greenguard Gold for low emissions. Purline eco is available in plank or tile format with a thickness of 2.5 mm supplied in rolls that measure 2 m x 20 m. A selection of 45 designs includes wood and stone patterns.
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  • Grow-In-Place Mushroom Insulation
  • Grow-In-Place Mushroom Insulation
  • Ecovative Design LLC
  • Grow-In-Place Mushroom Insulation
    Ecovative Design LLC
    Ecovative offers Grow-In-Place Mushroom Insulation for pre-fabricated, controlled conditions. The foam, which consists of mycelium (mushroom “roots”) bonded to agricultural byproducts, takes about a month to grow in a factory setting, according to the company. Then it is allowed to dry out, producing a solidified, airtight, structural wall assembly. The insulation is Class A fire rated without any added flame retardants, has an R-vale of 3.6 per inch, and a compressive strength of 0.3–6.7 psi at 10% (ASTM D695). Growing the insulation allows it to be self-sealing and reduces thermal bridging.
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  • Myco Foam Insulating Sheathing
  • Myco Foam Insulating Sheathing
  • Ecovative Design LLC
  • Myco Foam Insulating Sheathing
    Ecovative Design LLC
    Myco Foam insulating sheathing is an insulation board made of Ecovative's Mushroom Insulation bonded to Fortifiber's waterproof facing. The insulation board has comparable performance to foam insulation with a compressive strength of 0.3–6.7 psi at 10% compression (ASTM D695), R-value of R-3.6/inch (ASTM C518), and water vapor transmission of 0.02–0.03 perms (ASTM E96). The foam achieves a Class A fire rating with no added flame retardants.
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  • Polystar Polypropylene Pipe
  • Polystar Polypropylene Pipe
  • ISCO Industries
  • Polystar Polypropylene Pipe
    ISCO Industries
    Polytherm PP-RCT polypropylene pipe is a non-PVC piping that can be used for a variety of applications, including hydronic heating, ground-source systems, potable water, and graywater distribution. The polypropylene pieces are heat-joined in the field with an electric fusing tool to create truly monolithic plumbing systems without the use of solvents or glues. Polystar PP-RCT can function at higher temperatures and pressures than standard PP-R piping, according to the company. The company offers three pipe lines: CT-Red is for high temperature/pressure applications; CT-White is for non-potable applications; and CT-Blue for ambient temperature applications. Polystar is available in diameters from ½" to 24" and in lengths to 20'.
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  • CO2-Refrigerant Heat Pumps
  • CO2-Refrigerant Heat Pumps
  • Mayekawa USA Inc.
  • CO2-Refrigerant Heat Pumps
    Mayekawa USA Inc.
    Mayekawa manufactures three different heat pumps for commercial applications that use carbon dioxide as the refrigerant, rather than industry-standard HFCs. The EcoCute model is a water-to-water heat pump that provides both water heating (up to 194°F) and cooling from any water source, including waste heat or solar-preheated water, with a COP up to 8.0. The Eco Cute HWW-2HTC has a typical heating capacity of 270,000-410,000 Btu/hour (80-120 kW) and cooling capacity 80-350 kW. Typical hot water output is 4,000 to 7,000 gallons per day at temperatures of 150°F–194°F. This makes it feasible as an alternative to fossil-fuel-fired boilers.

    The Unimo air-to-water heat pump water heater produces similar water temperatures using the outdoor air as the heat source, while the Sirocco water-to-air heat pump produces output air temperatures of 176°F–250°F and offers water cooling. All Mayekawa heat pumps have 25 kW reciprocating compressors. Key markets include hotels, food processing, pasteurization, and thermal energy storage. The economics for EcoCute and Sirocco products will be most attractive where both heating and cooling loads exist and long run times are feasible.
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  • TCP A19 LED Replacment Lamps
  • TCP A19 LED Replacment Lamps
  • Technical Consumer Products, Inc.
  • TCP A19 LED Replacment Lamps
    Technical Consumer Products, Inc.
    Technical Consumer Products’ 8- and 11-watt omnidirectional A19 LED replacement lamps have the equivalent light output of 40- and 60-watt incandescent bulbs, respectively. Operating at over 72 lumens per watt for some products they are available in color temperatures from 2700K to 5000K with a color rendering index (CRI) of 82. These dimmable lamps are rated for a 25,000 hour rated life and come with a three-year warranty.
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  • Visio Chair
  • Visio Chair
  • Teknion
  • Visio Chair
    Teknion
    Teknion's Visio office chair is made of 50% recycled materials (11% post-consumer) and intended to be almost completely recyclable at the end of its service life. The chair's seat, arms, back, and headrest are adjustable in height and tilt, and the chair is available in five fabric colors. Visio is certified to BIFMA Level 2 and Greenguard Gold and is Living Building Challenge Red List Free.
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  • PrevaLED LED Modules and Light Engines
  • PrevaLED LED Modules and Light Engines
  • Osram Sylvania
  • PrevaLED LED Modules and Light Engines
    Osram Sylvania
    The PrevaLED line of modular LED light engines and modules are engineered for spotlights, downlights, and other applications. They offer CRI values over 80 and are available with outputs of 1,100, 2,000, and 3,000 lumens in color temperatures from 2700K to 4000K. The Cube Downlight modules and Core Spot light engines have efficacies as high as 106 and 116 lumens per watt, respectively. The PrevaLED HD (high definition) light engine is for use in high-quality lighting applications and comes with a control system that helps it achieve consistent CRI values over 90 (within a 3-step MacAdam ellipse) while still providing efficacies as high as 73 lpw.
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  • Soraa Vivid Galium Nitride LEDs
  • Soraa Vivid Galium Nitride LEDs
  • Soraa
  • Soraa Vivid Galium Nitride LEDs
    Soraa
    Soraa Vivid MR-16 LED luminaires are ideal for use where light quality is critical, such as art galleries or retail displays. Unlike other LEDs that use gallium nitride (GaN) crystals grown on a sapphire or silicon carbide base, Soraa uses GaN grown on a GaN base so the crystals have far fewer imperfections. Though less efficacious than some LEDs, Soraa MR-16s produce higher intensity, “full spectrum” light that rivals halogen bulbs, while operating at lower temperatures. They are available in 14-, 25-, and 36-degree beam angles.
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  • Thermory Decking
  • Thermory Decking
  • Thermory
  • Thermory Decking
    Thermory
    Thermory wood decking is thermally modified for durability without the use of chemical preservatives. Heated to approximately 400°F in a process Thermory has used in Estonia since the 1990s, the decking is strength-tested at 14,000 lbs/in2 and, according to the company, will resist rot and insects for at least 25 years. Most Thermory decking is made of ash harvested and milled in the U.S. and then shipped to Estonia for thermal treatment, so decking shipped back for use in the U.S. has added embodied energy from transportation. The company does not currently offer FSC certified wood. Thermory decking is available in various sizes.
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