Volume 44, Issue 9 - September 2009

feature

Going, Going, Green!

Nominations for the First USGlass Green Design Awards




Although it may sometimes seem like we’re waiting for architects and other building professionals to catch on, members of the glass industry know already that glass is “green.” Today’s high-performance glazing is able to provide natural daylighting that lowers energy bills (and keeps building occupants happy and productive) while keeping out heat to help maintain a comfortable environment.

In addition to those benefits, a number of glass product manufacturers and fabricators are finding ways to make the production of their products more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly. With all of these contributions toward making our world a better, healthier place, we at USGlass want to take a moment to recognize these green companies with the First USGlass Green Design Awards.

Over the next 3 pages you will find a list of those companies nominated by USGlass editorial staff and readers of the USGNN.com™ newsletter for the ways in which they define green. When choosing the nominees, our voters took into account both what’s produced and the ways in which those products are manufactured. The following descriptions were provided by the nominees.

Upon reading this article, please visit www.usglassmag

to vote for a winner in each category. Votes are due by October 12, 2009. In-depth descriptions of the ways in which our winners define green will appear in the November issue of USGlass.

To nominate your company for next year’s Design Awards, e-mail mheadley@glass.com.


 

Arch Aluminum & Glass Co. Inc.
With so many questions about green building popping up daily, Arch Aluminum & Glass Co. Inc. in Tamarac, Fla., decided to create a standalone website to give the industry an avenue for green information and details. Located at www.archgreen.com, the website covers the basics of the various green building programs, as well as other information such as helpful links and news. The company reports that a major upgrade is currently occurring behind the scenes on the site and will include the latest changes to the U.S. Green Building Council’s program, as well as other green- and energy-related opportunities.


Azon USA Inc.

Several decades ago Azon USA Inc. in Kalamazoo, Mich., summed up its mission in three words: “Azon Saves Energy,” a motto that still rings. Methods to improve the energy-efficiency of aluminum doors and windows became the main purpose for its founding. Today, Azon is a supplier of thermal barrier technology to help window companies manufacture durable, energy-efficient, high-performance aluminum windows, skylights, doors and curtainwall. As a green building product, aluminum is proven to be a sustainable material, with the ability to be recycled indefinitely using less than 5-percent of the energy originally used when it is first made. Azon’s technology is used in manufactured aluminum building products that have achieved Cradle-to-Cradle Certification. In addition, manufacturing processes in Azon’s facilities utilize a closed-loop system to blend and transport raw materials. The company supports the purchase and use of environmentally sensitive supplies, including those that have been recycled and re-manufactured. Its corporate office was purchased and renovated in 2004 using the latest energy-saving technologies in the lighting, plumbing and building envelope, as well as re-manufactured interior furnishings. The company uses Forest Stewardship Council-certified paper in its promotional materials.

 

Edgetech I.G.
For more than 20 years, Cambridge, Ohio-based Edgetech’s Super Spacer® products have contributed to the energy-efficiency and long-term durability and sustainability of commercial and residential window systems. Through the company’s Super Spacer® SustainaView® Window Technology, customers are assured they will achieve optimal efficiencies using Super Spacer. Additionally, Edgetech’s commercial warm-edge spacer system—Super Spacer® TriSeal™—is a known contributor to LEED® certification for its energy-saving benefits and effects on indoor environmental quality. Beyond its products and services, Edgetech is committed to its mission of environmental stewardship by implementing waste-reducing initiatives, educating employees, customers and the industry about energy-saving practices, printing on Forest Stewardship Council-certified paper when feasible and encouraging employees to participate in environmental organizations outside of work.

 

EFCO
In addition to a long history of supplying quality products, there are a number of features that make Monett, Mo.-based EFCO green. Company officials report that EFCO has offered thermal product development since the 1970s. The company offers integration of thermal struts, sunshades, light shelves and photovoltaic panels. It also has strong environmental stewardship practices through recycling and waste reduction programs. Through its USGBC® membership, the company supports the LEED® certification rating system, provides client education through AIA-accredited courses, receives employee and sales force education and training and has LEED® submittal support. In addition, the company has had major reductions of fossil fuel usage and greenhouse emissions through daily use of locally sourced recycled aluminum billet; in-house extrusion and finishing processes; in-house insulating glass and tempering capabilities; accessibility from a centralized U.S. location; and by being a single-source supplier.

 

Guardian Glass
Producing safe and reliable products, operating a healthy workplace and assuring the efficient use and preservation of natural resources are all integral parts of Auburn Hills, Mich.-based Guardian Glass’ green philosophy. Guardian is committed to sustainability. More than 20 of its manufacturing facilities are ISO 14001 registered, and the company has invested millions in facility upgrades to create one of the cleanest, greenest float glass plants in the world. In addition, Guardian products are designed to conserve energy. SunGuard® advanced architectural glass can be used to reduce heating and cooling costs, a key element in obtaining LEED certification. ClimaGuard® residential glass products utilize a combination of patented technologies to block out the sun’s UV rays while maximizing natural light. EcoGuard® solar glass products harness the sun’s power and convert it to electricity and provide solar energy systems.

 

J.E. Berkowitz LP
In order to lessen its environmental footprint, J.E. Berkowitz LP (JEB) in Pedricktown, N.J., has partnered with the U.S. Environmental Agency (EPA) on the SmartWay™ Transport Partnership program for providing eco-friendly shipping. The SmartWay™ initiative was created in 2004 as a collaborative voluntary program between the EPA and the freight industry to address greenhouse gas emissions, fuel consumption, criteria pollutants and operating costs associated with ground freight transportations. In order to become a SmartWay™ Transport Partner, a FLEET model must be submitted that meets a series of criteria including emissions, engine idling, aerodynamics, tires, low friction lubricants and average speed. Once deemed a partner, a SmartWay™ company commits itself to improve its total point score by 15 percent per year over a three-year period. JEB is further looking to implement: adding eco flaps to the trucks (a rain/mud flap for vehicles that increases miles per gallon); using only SmartWay™ approved tires on trucks; reducing driving speeds by 5 mph, which will lower emissions by 7 percent; and decreasing truck idling while cranes are in use.

 

Kawneer North America
From its dedication to developing products that comply with LEED standards and promote whole-building design practices, to its daily operations, Kawneer North America in Norcross, Ga., defines itself as “green.” Company officials report that sustainability is the foundation of the company’s product line, which is comprised of one of the earth’s most plentiful recyclables: aluminum. Kawneer’s photovoltaic products help create onsite renewable energy, while its sunshade products help reduce solar heat gain. In addition, its 1600 Wall System®1 and 1600 Wall System®2, InLighten® LightShelf and 1600 SunShade® have been awarded Cradle to CradleSM Environmental Product Certification at the silver level. All products are offered in a range of solvent-free, powder coat paints. Kawneer also uses biodegradable packaging for its complete portfolio of products, utilizes reusable containers for chemicals and paints, prints collateral materials on 100-percent recycled paper and/or Forest Stewardship Council-certified paper and offers access to information online to encourage the reduction of printed materials. Through its actions, Kawneer is making choices that positively impact the future of the environment.

 

PPG Industries
Officials with PPG Industries in Pittsburgh note that the company aggressively advanced architectural glass technology with Solarban 70XL glass, featuring the industry’s first triple-silver low-E coating.  It reports that Solarban 70XL glass, with a light to solar gain value of 2.37, can increase energy savings in buildings by up to 15 percent. In addition, PPG was a pioneer in oxygen-fuel furnace technology. The company licenses this manufacturing technology, which reduces fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions, to international glass manufacturers. The first glass manufacturer to achieve Cradle to Cradle CertificationSM, PPG also was one of the earliest manufacturer members of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Star® Partner Program. As a result of these and other corporate initiatives, PPG was recognized last year by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) as a top S&P 500 company for corporate transparency and carbon emissions management.

 

Solar Innovations Inc.
Solar Innovations Inc. in Pine Grove, Pa., defines green through responsible use of resources during the manufacturing process and in the day-to-day office activities; continual efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle; and by making choices in favor of the environment rather than the company’s bottom line. Solar Innovations recently accelerated its green efforts with the completion of a new facility that integrates passive solar energy applications into the building. The facility also has been designed for future accommodation of photovoltaic panels. In addition, the company’s recycling program has been able to capture approximately 90 percent of all materials leaving the facility for recycling or reuse. Throughout the product development process, careful consideration is given to material selection, manufacturing methods and how consumers will utilize the product to ensure the process achieves the standards the company has established.

 

Syracuse Glass Company Inc.
Syracuse Glass Co. Inc. in Syracuse, N.Y., has recently upgraded its truck fleet to improve energy efficiency. The company replaced its steel truck bodies with lighter aluminum ones, and added computers that govern speed, calculate fuel efficiency, shut the truck off after 10 minutes of idling and suggest the most fuel-efficient gear for the driver to select. Its diesel fuel supplier comes to the company’s shop and fuels the trucks at night, which is saving the company time, idling and fuel expenses. Syracuse Glass also recycles or reuses glass, aluminum, cardboard, office paper and wood—even old equipment gets cut apart and the components recycled when possible. Syracuse officials say they are on track to cut the company’s landfill trash bill by half again this year.

 

Technical Glass Products
Technical Glass Products (TGP) in Snoqualmie, Wash., is making the earth a priority in both its product offerings and daily processes. All of its glass and steel cut-off waste is recycled, while its FireLite® products incorporate recycled and reclaimed glass. Whenever possible, its fire-rated and architectural packaging uses recycled cardboard materials instead of timber or plastic crating. In addition, TGP’s new headquarters building streamlines operations and is pending LEED certification. The building relies heavily on recycled and reclaimed finish materials and incorporates a strong daylighting design to maximize use of natural light and reduce energy consumption. It also uses reclaimed water for irrigation, has an energy-efficient electrical design and HVAC systems and uses low VOC content building materials. The company’s community transit programs encourage employees to reduce the number of vehicles on the road. TGP also offers an AIA-accredited continuing education course on daylighting practices to provide architects and designers with resources on effective sustainable design.

 

Tempered Glass Inc.
Atlanta-based Tempered Glass Inc. (TGI), a part of United Glass Corp., says it focused on scrap and energy reduction long before it was chic to be “green.” For years, the company has reduced glass usage and waste by incorporating glass optimization and reject-tracking software into its operations. To insure glass consumption was kept to a bare minimum, the company purchased a glass remnant system for remnant storage and retrieval, which eliminated the need to cut low-yielding layouts and rejected lites from virgin inventory. This automated, computerized control of remnants insures minimal square footage of glass in the dumpster. Additionally TGI has reduced energy consumption by utilizing automated machinery interfaces to maximize performance. TGI has enlisted Georgia Power for a complete energy audit, encompassing everything from lighting to flexible energy usage hours based upon peak demands. Although “lean and green” is the goal of most companies today, TGI United Glass Corp. took innovative steps years ago to conserve raw materials and help protect the environment.

 

Truseal Technologies Inc.
Representatives from Truseal Technologies Inc. in Solon, Ohio, note that the company provides the industry with the lowest U-value warm-edge spacer system on the market, enabling manufacturers to produce the highest energy-efficient window systems. Lower U-values translate into lower energy demands, thereby reducing carbon dioxide emissions and saving the environment one window at a time. Truseal also is actively involved in promoting a green message to window producers and consumers through involvement in educational outreach, industry conferences, the Energy Star® program and other activities.

 

Wausau Window and Wall Systems
Wausau, Wis.-based Wausau Window and Wall Systems’ new manufacturing center and office building recently earned LEED Silver-level certification. The facility preserves and enhances the natural environment, and showcases energy-efficient and sustainable building products manufactured in its own facility. Wausau’s fixed and project-out awning windows were configured in tall, continuous strips for natural daylighting and fresh air in office areas. Window and curtainwall systems with thermal barriers provide condensation resistance and reduce conductive heat loss. Exterior sun shades block solar heat gain in summer and redirect visible light further into the facility’s open plan office areas. Recycled and regional materials were preferred throughout the building. Designed for durability and longevity, Wausau anticipates its facility will remain flexible to continued improvements, serving its customers for many decades.

 

YKK AP America Inc.
Austell, Ga.-based YKK AP America Inc.’s ISO 14001 environmentally certified plant in Dublin, Ga., recycles 100-percent of its aluminum waste onsite and captures 93 percent of all solvent emissions from its paint line. The plant uses advanced waste water treatment methods and has reduced gas usage. The company has goals for further emissions reduction. Company officials also note that YKK AP was the first fenestrations systems producer to receive Cradle to CradleSM certification of a product, and is the only industry company to win a 2009 IDEA design award for combining energy efficiency with aesthetics. In addition, YKK AP encourages employees to earn LEED AP credentials and a company study group helps them achieve certification. Through its products and business practice, YKK AP has contributed to LEED certification for numerous projects.

 

 


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