Environment Reports – 2017

bannerAt PFB Corporation, we are concerned with the future of the planet and the effects that modern  lifestyles may be having on climate change.

PFB Corporation is committed to conducting its operations responsibly, mindful of the economic, environmental and social impacts of its operations.

Sustainability Through Action

PFB Corp. has always been transparent with their sustainability practices. Each year, information on the consumption of Energy and the Management of Wastes and Amount of Emissions are being reported during the annual sales conference.

The following parameters are being discussed:

Waste
Waste is a significant issue for manufacturers like PFB both from a cost perspective and its environmental impact. PFB is continually looking for ways to reduce the generation of waste and, wherever possible, reuse and recycle. Total waste to landfill increased by 14% in 2015 over the previous year. This was caused by increased production levels and introduction of new products and processes. Efforts are underway to determine ways to optimize these processes and take action to reduce waste by diverting scrap materials to alternate recycling streams and by improving production yields. 

WasteToLandFill

Energy
Direct electricity and natural gas consumption in our operations increased slightly in 2015 over the previous year. The increase was due to an overall increase in production levels. Energy consumption has been a significant focus of our individual facilities as we work toward improving efficiencies through installation of energy efficient lighting, equipment and administrative controls for managing equipment operation schedules. 

Direct-Energy

Emissions
Our focus for the past several years has been to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by using fossil fuels more efficiently. Additionally, PFB has an initiative underway to substitute raw material inputs with materials that contains less VOC expanding agent. Since 2008 we have increased our usage of low VOC raw materials to 72% in 2015. This has resulted in an average annual VOC emissions reduction of over 100 tonnes.

VOC-Emissions-Intensity-2017

Corporate Responsibility

For the past 10 years PFB Corp. has reported the material impacts our activity has on the environment. We tabulate and report our emissions, energy usage and waste generated. Our focus continues to be on improving our performance through a process of continuous improvement.

Environmental conservation has always been a top priority as shown in the practices, products and processes, including energy efficient buildings.

To learn about PFB Corporation and their sustainability directives, visit http://www.pfbsustainability.com.

Designing Green Buildings with a focus on health

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 While Sustainable buildings are built for safeguarding the environment and helps save for energy costs, it should also benefit the overall well-being of the people living inside those buildings.

According to an article by Chris Hellstern of the website Daily Journal of Commerce (http://www.djc.com/news/en/12098663.html), the common practice for evaluating buildings was that several designers and building rating systems would focus mainly on a building’s performance.

But just recently, there has been a growing shift on how this is being handled as health and wellness for the residents of the building are now a significant part of the equation.

Hellstern has added that there is now real, hard data which suggests how important health considerations are during a building design process. Case in point: A 2016 study done by Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health discovered that better indoor environmental factors was linked to improved productivity and better cognitive function.

“These results suggest that even modest improvements to indoor environmental quality may have a profound impact on the decision-making performance of workers,” said Joseph Allen, lead author of the research.

The focus on health

As mentioned on the report provided by Harvard University, several noticeable improvements on health were found during the research period: “Measuring nine cognitive function domains, researchers found that the largest improvements occurred in the areas of:

  • crisis response (97% higher scores in green conditions and 131% higher in green+)
  • strategy (183% and 288% higher)
  • information usage (172% and 299% higher)

In addition, when researchers looked at the effect of CO2—not normally thought of as a direct indoor pollutant—they found that, for seven of the nine cognitive functions tested, average scores decreased as CO2 levels increased to levels commonly observed in many indoor environments.” (https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/press-releases/green-office-environments-linked-with-higher-cognitive-function-scores/ )

Although this directive is fairly new, it becomes important for builders to consider the health impact on occupants when designing sustainable buildings. When this is added to reductions in energy consumption, water consumption and environmental deterioration, then the chances for green buildings to be the main option for the future would greatly increase.

Supporting the benefits of green buildings

Health-focused parameters aside, buildings will play a major role in the sustainability of communities. There will be more reasons for adding health-based designs for buildings, and its benefits would be too hard to ignore.

Companies such as PFB Corporation are committed to conduct operations that affect environmental and social trends and recognize the importance of being transparent with their sustainability efforts. Environmental conservation has always been their top priority as shown in their practices, products and processes, including energy efficient buildings.

To learn about PFB Corporation and their sustainability directives, visit http://www.pfbsustainability.com.

 

 

 

Importance of Green Buildings to Cities

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It is predicted that by year 2050, almost 70 percent of the global population will be residing in cities. This means that buildings will play a vital role in sustaining urban growth. With the problems concerning health and environment posed by cities, it becomes important for builders to consider more environment-friendly ways in building new structures.

The Urban Expedition series, a collection of articles from National Geographic that tackle green solutions to cities around the globe, just published an educational info graphic style “by the numbers” view on green buildings and its sustainable benefits. It highlights what comprises a green building and what positive impact it provides to both its residents and the environment – and what eventual influence it brings to the cities of the future. (http://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/urban-expeditions/green-buildings/benefits-of-green-buildings-human-health-economics-environment/)

The environmental issue

Cities are a main source of emissions and waste, currently accounting for an astounding 70% of greenhouse-gas emissions. With 30% of those emissions coming from buildings, improvements on the way buildings are built and operates are very important for it to become more sustainable. And then there are also other issues that relates to health, water and energy use.

The Green building alternative

Due to these concerns, builders from around the world have started to implement a more green approach in building new structures for cities. Thus, more and more green buildings have been built.

Through the LEED certification that ensures that a structure meets the green building standard, a green building is usually designed to use up less energy costs and water, as well as make air quality better. The article has also stressed that building methods that are sustainable has clearly several benefits over traditional ones.

Benefits of Green buildings

The post has also mentioned the benefits of green buildings, some of which include:

  • Energy efficiency from improved insulation building materials
  • Mitigation of the Urban Heat Island Effect
  • Water Conservation from systematic consumption reduction
  • Environment-friendly building materials that decrease emissions

The positive effects brought forth by green buildings have resulted in producing an encouraging stat: green buildings in the U.S. have now reduced carbon emissions by 34%. Although this number may not mean a lot now, as this positive trend continues, so can the potential for green buildings to provide some lasting impact to communities and contribute to urban sustainable directives in the near future.

Supporting sustainable buildings 

The improving direction brought forth by green buildings provides not only the environmental benefits and long term gains for future generations, it could also help propel other organizations to pay more attention that possibly leads to positive action.

Companies such as PFB Corporation are committed to conduct operations that affect environmental and social trends. Environmental conservation has always been their top priority as shown in their practices, products and processes, including energy efficient buildings.

Insulspan is an excellent choice to construct energy efficient buildings because of its energy efficiency features and ability to reduce energy consumption in buildings. Insulspan’s sustainable system and its ability to withstand natural disasters better than other construction methods makes it a top option for energy efficient buildings.

To learn about PFB Corporation and their sustainability directives, visit http://www.pfbsustainability.com

To learn more about Insulspan SIPs, visit the Insulspan website at: http://www.insulspan.com

Greenery: timely color for 2017

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Color of the Year

For 16 years now, Pantone Inc., a company known for its proprietary color space Pantone Matching System (PMS) that helps standardize colors used mainly by manufacturers for printing purposes, has selected a specific color that would carry the honorary title of “Color of the Year”.

Based on the Pantone.com website (https://www.pantone.com/color-of-the-year-2017), this year’s Color of the Year is Greenery. The website notes: “The more submerged people are in modern life, the greater their innate craving to immerse themselves in the physical beauty and inherent unity of the natural world. This shift is reflected by the proliferation of all things expressive of Greenery in daily lives through urban planning, architecture, lifestyle and design choices globally.”

Greenery’s link to sustainability

The color green has long been associated with sustainability and symbolizes nature for obvious reasons. From plants and trees to leaves and fields, a good part of our natural environment bear the familiar hues of the color green. While green is also linked to other good things such as wealth and progress, no association is as evident for the color on nature and the environment.

Associating this color to the branding of organizations who are sustainability-focused has also proven be a good association for better representation of their core values and objectives.

Helping spread environmental awareness

With Greenery selected as 2017’s Color of the Year, there is a favorable possibility for increased awareness towards the environment and the issues it face. As companies and communities become more and more conscious of their carbon footprint and impact to the surroundings, this selection provides another opportunity to make more green choices on a fresh start.

Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute says it best: “Greenery bursts forth in 2017 to provide us with the reassurance we year for amid a tumultuous social and political environment. Satisfying our growing desire to rejuvenate and revitalize, Greenery symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another and larger purpose.”

In support of sustainability in 2017

New start, continued commitment. Sustainability directives from various sectors both private and public are gradually picking up steam at a time when environmental concerns require immediate attention.

Companies such as PFB Corporation are committed to conduct operations that affect environmental and social trends and recognize the importance of being transparent with their sustainability efforts. Environmental conservation has always been their top priority as shown in their practices, products and processes, including energy efficient buildings.

To learn about PFB Corporation and their sustainability directives, visit http://www.pfbsustainability.com.

Sustainability in 2017

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The year 2016 brought forth several milestones for accomplishing sustainability goals. From the increase in sustainable awareness with support coming from different corporations to more energy-efficient buildings being built, this year was a good one for the green movement.

With 2017 just around the corner, we face another year with some questions in mind. How will 2017 fare in terms of green initiatives and how would it impact us on a local and global scale?

Thomas Singer from the sustainability website GreenBiz (https://www.greenbiz.com/article/4-reasons-be-excited-about-sustainability-2017) had posted a very insightful article on the issues that we face in 2017 and why we should remain optimistic despite the challenges sustainability is expected to face.

As mentioned in the post, below are some of the reasons to be excited in 2017 for sustainability, which includes climate governance, sustainability financing and urban leadership.

Taking the lead in climate governance

Doubts surrounding the next U.S. administration in terms of prioritizing environmental directives means that the door is open for other governing bodies to step in and take the helm in the green movement. The biggest question is whether emerging markets such as China would decide to accept the daunting task.

Green financing gaining momentum

Green investments have steadily grown and has helped tremendously in both accomplishing climate goals and modernizing systems. As 2017 arrives, this positive momentum should remain to be the focus and aid in continued growth.

Sustainability leadership from urban areas

Rightfully becoming stewards of environmental conservation, cities have been championing the green movement, even more so than their government counterparts. The motivation in doing so remains obvious: obtaining less air pollution, having healthier communities, natural disaster control etc. Despite possible lack of support from governing bodies, cities must strive to implement sustainable practices.

In support of sustainability in 2017 

Sustainability has come along way in the last couple of years. While there is still so much that needs to be done in order to have a significant and lasting impact, the seeds of growth have been planted. The key now is to keep these directives going and maintain green consciousness.

Companies such as PFB Corporation are committed to conduct operations that affect environmental and social trends and recognize the importance of being transparent with their sustainability efforts. Environmental conservation has always been their top priority as shown in their practices, products and processes, including energy efficient buildings.

To learn about PFB Corporation and their sustainability directives, visit http://www.pfbsustainability.com.

Going Green for the Holidays

Christmas tree
The Holiday season is here once again; that time of the year when decorating, choosing gifts and shopping are on top of our to-do lists.

In making our Holiday choices, we can choose to Go Green and influence our decisions that leans towards sustainability.

The following are some Holiday Season tips that are helpful in being able to have a Go Green Holiday Season:

 


Energy-efficient decorating

– Purchase a living tree that you can plant outside – or keep as a houseplant once the holidays are over.

– Go for freshly-cut trees; these are recyclable. When the season is over, see if you can find tree-recycling pick up days in your community. Otherwise the trees you throw away in the trash bin ends up in a landfill.

– Own an artificial Christmas Tree that you can have for many years to come.

– Plan on having less Christmas lights or none at all in your holiday decors. LED Christmas lights are capable of saving more than 95 percent of energy in no time.

– To save on electric bills, attach your indoor/outdoor lights into a timer. That way you can turn it off in times when it is less required. As an example, make sure lights are turned off once you go to bed – no one is out there admiring those lights at 3 in the morning.

– Start being creative: Use natural materials that you can find in your home for decorations.


Resource management

 – When looking for electronic gadgets for both home and office, check to see if it has the Energy Star label on it. These products are energy-efficient, meaning they are turned off when not in use.

– Plan ahead when going shopping. Instead of having several trips, strive to have it all done in one day to save on gas.

– Shop for gifts that are recyclable, energy-efficient and naturally produced.

– Rather than buy shiny rolls of paper, use recycled paper when wrapping gifts. Another option is wrapping gifts in wearable items like scarves.

– Instead of sending Christmas cards by mail, save on costs by e-mailing holiday cards and Christmas invites.


In support of an Eco-Friendly Season 

Celebrating the Holidays doesn’t mean putting all our green initiatives on hold. Going Green is possible with the right planning and action.

As companies and communities continue to recognize the importance of energy efficiency this coming Holiday Season,  so does the rate of its positive impact to the environment.

Companies such as PFB Corporation are committed to conduct operations that affect environmental and social trends and recognize the importance of being transparent with their sustainability efforts. Environmental conservation has always been their top priority as shown in their practices, products and processes, including energy efficient buildings.

To learn about PFB Corporation and their sustainability directives, visit http://www.pfbsustainability.com.

Building code changes support energy efficiency

New building codes based on the National Energy Code of Canada for Buildings (NECB) and Section 9.36 of the Alberta Building Code for the province of Alberta, Canada now come with requirements that support energy efficiency.

Established by the National Research Council and Natural Resources Canada as part of its energy efficient and greenhouse gas emission reduction directives, the NECB constitutes a wide area of building systems and materials and would take into effect on November 1st, 2016. For the province of Alberta, this is the first  time that energy efficiency requirements were implemented to its building codes with minimum standards applied to large buildings.

Impact and building code compliance

The building codes affect building layouts and construction methods and now takes into consideration a more energy efficient approach that also aims to decrease greenhouse gas distribution. Insulation, windows, ventilation, and lighting are among the areas affected by the requirements.

For proper compliance, several options are available for builders to select: prescriptive, trade-off, and performance.

Prescriptive – usually the simplest route to follow, although may not be suitable for all types of buildings. Checklists of this option are able to assist applications in knowing certain articles in the code. If requirements are not met for this path then another compliance selection should be chosen.

Trade-off – This option provides more flexibility on the building layout as it permits trading elements with the similar aspect of the energy code without necessarily meeting each and every requirement outlined in the NECB. Guidelines for the limitations of selecting this path however, should be referenced accordingly.

Performance – For the most adjustability, this is the option to choose. This path could permit trade-offs between building structures, and in some cases may be the only option around for particular types of buildings.

Long term benefits

For single family houses, code requirements stress minimum efficiency on the furnace,  heater, windows, walls, roofs, etc. And while costs for houses and buildings affected by the new building codes are considerably higher than older structures, the long term impact translate to lower utility bills since less energy would be produced due to the added insulation; energy savings basically means financial savings for the daily functions of the home.

The significant long term advantage of more energy efficient buildings impacts the environment as a whole. With more and more green initiatives being implemented and buildings becoming more sustainable, public awareness on energy efficiency is greatly increased for the better.

In support of energy efficient buildings 

Aside from significant savings and reduction in energy consumption, energy efficient buildings support one very significant objective: sustainability.

As companies and communities continue to recognize the importance of energy efficiency in constructing buildings, so does the rate of positive impact to the environment.

Companies such as PFB Corporation are committed to conduct operations that affect environmental and social trends and recognize the importance of being transparent with their sustainability efforts. Environmental conservation has always been their top priority as shown in their practices, products and processes, including energy efficient buildings.

To learn about PFB Corporation and their sustainability directives, visit http://www.pfbsustainability.com.

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