Recently, Jay’s dad started building on some property he owns in rural Virginia. The first structure built was the garage/workshop. Jay and I were eager for the chance to try out some green building materials as an alternative to the usual stuff. Before traveling over to the east coast for Turkey Day, we did some research along side his pops about what the cheapest, most green insulation material could be used (which could also be purchased at a major box store near by). We found that Recycled Paper Cellulose was the least expensive material you could buy, at 25 cents per sq. foot and it is available through most building material suppliers. The alternatives were The Pink Stuff, fiberglass rolls at about 50 cents per sq. foot. I was wary of using fiberglass because of its notorious itch inducing particles that will irritate not just your skin, but your lungs as well! If the particles ever become loose and get into your ventilation system, this can mean big trouble for your internal organs and cancer fighting immune system. Another recycled and mostly benign insulator are the trendy new denim rolls. These are made from recycled scraps from jean manufacturers. This was my top choice until I did a price check. This stuff goes for $1.00 per sq. foot. Yikes!
The price factor is still top priority when you have to build, those square feet can add up fast. And when you’re trying to convince a retiring baby boomer to go green even though it costs 4 times as much, they’re gonna laugh and buy the usual ‘Pink Stuff’. So we were happy to find an alternative that was cost effective and recycled. The only downside was the actual packaging of the material. It came in plastic bags, which most of you know, drive me crazy and can not be easily recycled or degraded. A would love to see this company really pull through and start packaging the product in, you guessed it, recycled paper!
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