Material Transparency at Technoform
The U.S Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED® v4 rating systems have significantly influenced building product manufacturers to disclose the ingredients used and the potential effects that these materials may have on human health and the environment.
Therefore focus on material transparency is driving companies in the fenestration industry to look carefully at their supply chain and to evaluate the chemicals, and their associated hazards, used in their production. Determining a credible way for manufacturers to declare the ingredients of their products and their hazards poses a major challenge.
Material transparency can be accomplished through a “material health declaration.” There are many different types of material health declarations that can be used to qualify for the material ingredient disclosure option in the LEEDv4 Materials and Resources credit area. They do not all use the same rules for disclosure. The typical disclosures are Health Product Declarations (HPDs) or the “Declare” label from the Living Product Challenge. Neither provide an assessment relative to the risk of exposure to hazards of the ingredient once it is in its final form in the construction material. Moreover, both are self-disclosed, which unfortunately has resulted in misinterpretation of disclosure rules and led to inconsistent disclosures for similar products throughout the fenestration industry.
Third party verification of material transparency is essential to reporting accurate and reliable information. With this in mind, at Technoform, we decided to use the Cradle to Cradle® (C2C) Institute’s highly regarded third party verified product certification program to develop material health declarations for our warm edge spacer and insulating polyamide strip products. In addition to disclosing a product’s ingredients for the end-user’s awareness, C2C also helps manufacturers avoid using harmful chemicals, shift to using safer ingredients, and make a commitment to continual improvements. C2C Material Health Certification also rates the level of achievement concerning material safety with status levels of Bronze, Silver, Gold, and, the highest level Platinum.
For Technoform, the first step in the C2C Material Health Certification process was to review the material health requirements in the Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Product Standard. Next, we selected an Accredited Assessment Body which explored and analyzed our entire supply chain and determined the full set of ingredients present in our products. As a result of this third-party assessment, it was determined that Technoform not only met the requirements of the C2C Material Health Certification, but achieved the Platinum level for TGI®-Spacer and the Gold level for Technoform Bautec’s polyamide thermal break strips.
Technoform’s philosophy has always been to improve processes and products continually, to be one step ahead for our customers and to always be better than the competition. Both of our Cradle to Cradle Material Health Certifications illustrate that there is nothing harmful in our thermal breaks or spacers. It is a demonstration of our commitment to provide healthy materials for the buildings in which we live and work, and to help sustain the planet in which we all share.
Click here to view Technoform Bautec GOLD Material Health Certificate
Click here to view Technoform Glass Insulation PLATINUM Material Health Certificate