The threat climate change poses is existential, and buildings are hugely responsible. Taking climate action in buildings and construction should be a global initiative. In the U.S. alone buildings consume some 40 percent of the energy annually, and they emit nearly half of the carbon dioxide CO2.
PSI has developed a suite of Sustainable, Green, Safe and Economical building products vertically integrated to create and provide Dignified Housing for the future occupants while protecting our environment. PSI structures do NOT utilize any organic materials.
PSI takes great pride and serious responsibility in every effort made to protecting the environment. Whether it be in the manufacturing process or the finished product, PSI takes the appropriate measures to ensure that each step is as environmentally sound as possible.
There are many environmental benefits associated with the manufacturing and use of Expanded Polystyrene (EPS). EPS is considered to be resource efficient as there is little energy used in the manufacturing process. This process includes the use of steam, that is collected once condensed, and then reused on a repeated basis.
The materials are also naturally free from dangerous ozone-depleting substances and lend themselves to recycling. These are environmentally friendly, inert, stable substances that are not harmful to the ozone layer. EPS is easily recyclable, be it from a post industrial/consumer waste stream, the manufacturing process or waste at a construction job site. It can not only be granulated and turned into new EPS products, it can also be thermally re-processed into new resins for a variety of applications.
When EPS products are used in items like Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs) or Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) the environmental protections are only multiplied. A home built with SIPs or ICFs create an airtight building envelope. This reduces air leakage and heat loss, thus reducing energy consumption and CO2 emissions in our atmosphere more than a home built with 2x dimensional lumber. The use of EPS in both commercial and residential construction is proven to reduce green house gas emissions as well as energy consumption, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
ICF structures provide dramatic savings in energy consumption. These products reduce things like heat loss and air leakage far better than traditional building supplies by creating airtight spaces and continuous insulation wall detail. An insulating material’s resistance to conductive heat flow is measured in its thermal resistance and this measurement is known as an R- value. The higher the value, the greater its effectiveness. EPS, across the board, has more stable, long term retention (LTR), and a higher R-value per dollar invested than other insulation.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development compared ICF and wood-frame house constructions and found that ICF wall construction provides a 20 to 25 percent savings in annual heating and cooling costs. Other reports put that number as high as 70 percent. ICF structures provide 75 percent reduction in outside air infiltration, reducing dust and allergens while being five times more quiet than traditional wood-frame homes. Particularly appealing to environmentalists is the fact that buildings with ICF saves at least 10 trees per home.