AAMA’s Vinyl Material Council Publishes Sustainability White PaperMarch 26th, 2012 by DWM Magazine
The Vinyl Material Council (VMC) of the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) has released a new white paper on sustainability, “Sustainable Vinyl: One material, virtually endless possibilities.” According to AAMA, the overall goals of the paper are to dispel myths and confirm truths about vinyl as a sustainable material, as well as outline the material’s durability and sustainability.
“Ultimately, this document highlights the critical role vinyl plays in sustaining the environment, as well as its versatility,” says Hallie Smith-Petee (PolyOne), chair of the VMC Sustainability White Paper Task Group.
According to the announcement, the paper discusses several merits of vinyl in fenestration as well as in other applications, from safety and longevity, to its recyclable nature and reliable historical performance.
Significant portions of the white paper explain how vinyl measures up in terms of four conditions for sustainability:
• Carbon neutrality — the consideration of the amount of carbon released into the atmosphere as a result of the manufacture and use of the product in its intended application;
• Controlled waste management system — the minimization of the amount of material going into the waste stream and the avoidance of a concentration of material not naturally occurring; includes considerations for product longevity, scrap recycling and post-industrial recycling;
• Zero-emissions — the assurance that persistent organic compounds from the whole life cycle do not result in systematic increases in concentration in nature; and
• Zero accumulation of toxic materials in nature — the assurance that no accumulation of toxic materials occurs in nature as a result of the product life cycle.
Wrapping up the paper is a section addressing myths and truths about vinyl in which topics such as environmental impact, recyclability, low dioxin releases and fire safety are discussed. The white paper is available for free download in AAMA’s online Publication Store.