Green Building Products that are Blue
We all love living in our denim jeans. And as a young girl scout we used to recycle them into handy and utilitarian handbags. Now, instead of going to the landfill with the garbage we can find those jeans recycled and behind our walls, protecting us from the wind and cold. How about taking our favorite clothing item, one that has kept us comfortable for so many decades (think back to Levi Strauss making denim jeans for the Gold Rush!) to provide high R-value in our homes: Denim Insulation…a natural fiber material that installs easily.
Denim insulation is also mold and mildew resistant, and there are no off-gassing or VOC concerns. It also provides excellent sound insulation. This is a green product that needs no warning label! Touch fiberglass and you feel prickly, ichy for days. Not so with natural denim.
Denim has a high R-value, it is non-toxic. To gain fire retardant qualifications shredded denim fibers are treated with a Borate solution for non-toxic fire retardation. Though denim insulation is 15 – 20% more expensive than traditional fiberglass, it may well be worth it.
Who produces denim insulation? Idaho Blue and Ultra touch Bonded Logic are two manufacturers. The latter takes those post industrial scraps and adds it to recycled jeans harvested with a program put together with Cotton, Inc and the Gap stores (1000 across the country) –check out CottonfromBluetoGreen.org. Drop off jeans and receive a 30% coupon for the purchase of Gap’s 1969 Blue jeans.
In one year alone, 270,000 blue jeans were collected and sent out to Bonded Logic for the manufacture of Ultra Touch batting insulation AND 570 homes were insulated.
This one is a win-win-win: recycle your old jeans and get a discount for a new pair; keep usable/good material out of landfills; get a healthy, snuggly insulation product in your home.
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