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Understanding Recycled Content Reporting

You deserve to have confidence in the recycled-content claims of the products you select. LEED has made it easier than ever to obtain the truth with its latest ruling. This document will help you understand this new ruling on recycled content, giving you the assurance to select the right insulation for your job.

The Recycled Truth
A new LEED Interpretation Ruling (LIR) released on October 1, 2012, ruled manufacturers can no longer use an average of multiple places of manufacture when reporting recycled-content claims.

This new interpretation ruling could have a big impact on some architects and designers applying for, and specifying products for LEED credits. While the specificity and more clearly defined criteria will offer validity to sustainability claims, some manufacturers will no longer be able to benefit from a North American or system average for recycled-content claims.

The good news is CertainTeed Insulation customers will not be affected, because the North American manufacturer has already been reporting recycled-content claims on a by plant, by product basis. Truth in numbers is already on their side.

CertainTeed meets or exceeds all performance standards required for insulation products in the U.S. and Canada — and that's exactly what you get when you partner with a sustainable leader.

Why the Change?
Many products, such as insulation, are manufactured at multiple locations throughout North America and worldwide. Typically, there are differences in regional infrastructure and the availability and economics of various recycled materials across manufacturing locations. Although the same company is producing similar products, these variances can result in a specific project location receiving actual products that are significantly different than the original recycled-content claim.

Therefore, a product known to have zero recycled-content may have been unduly benefiting from the recycled-content of the manufacturer's other products and/or facilities.

You Should Know
Reporting on a by plant, by product basis provides you with accuracy and assurance that you and your customers or occupants deserve when striving for LEED performance.

Rather than hide behind a convoluted numbers game, CertainTeed Insulation realized early on the benefits of reporting on a by plant, by product basis. As the only major insulation manufacturer to employ independent third-party certification of recycled content in the manner as ruled by USGBC, CertainTeed Insulation has been reporting this way since 2009.

CertainTeed Insulation believes accuracy and transparency will always win out in the end and is committed to walking the walk in the ongoing effort to improve its overall environmental footprint.

Be Certain™
Product selection is largely the architect or specifiers' responsibility and selection of truly sustainable building products can be difficult. Considerations of cost, performance and aesthetics are critical. They must perform significant research or verification that the product is both suitable and code-compliant. Truth in reporting from manufacturers is the key to making the product specification process easier.

When selecting a CertainTeed insulation product, architects and specifiers can be sure the recycled-content information they're receiving is accurate and straightforward.

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Averages vs. Minimums
Under the new ruling, it is important to ask the manufacturer if the certificate provided is for the manufacturing location from which their actual product will come. Specifiers should also be sure to ask if they have an independent third-party certifier.

When it comes to insulation, it's also important to know if the manufacturer is certifying glass batch, or the recycled content percent by total weight of the entire product. Beware of certifications for the recycled content of a single component of the product and not the entire finished product.

CertainTeed Insulation recycled content claims are reviewed by GreenCircle Certified, LLC, an independent third-party certifier. GreenCircle works directly and with the people in the plants to secure the recycled-content data.

Because CertainTeed insulation also certifies their product minimums, not unweighted averages, specifiers can be sure the products they receive are at the very least the claimed percentage or possibly better than specified.

Closing the Loophole
While the change associated with this new ruling may seem inconsequential at first glance, the impact it could potentially have on the industry is anything but inconsequential.

CertainTeed Insulation has led the way with reporting of recycled-content claims, believing a by plant, by product basis was and is the right thing to do. Thanks to this new USGBC ruling, manufacturers are required to follow in the footsteps of CertainTeed Insulation as it continues to improve on providing the industry with sustainable products.

Commitment to Sustainability
CertainTeed Insulation is dedicated to Building Responsibly™ with fiber glass insulation products that are engineered, produced and shipped with the commitment to minimizing environmental impact and improving energy saving.

You can Be Certain you're getting quality and sustainability with CertainTeed Insulation. Visit SustainableTruth.com, call 800-233-8990, or contact your local CertainTeed Insulation Representative for additional information.

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