Corporate Sustainability Case Studies

Case Studies by Service:

CertainTeed Corporation - Life Cycle Assessment

The CedarBoards siding product line from CertainTeed Corporation is an excellent example of SSCís ability to quantify our clientís environmental impact reductions, provide a baseline for continual improvement, and effectively communicate resulting advancements. In 2007, SSC first conducted a sustainable product analysis and Life Cycle Assessment on the CedarBoards products made in Jackson, MI.

As part of this analysis, SSC recommended that CertainTeed develop an extended producer responsibility take-back program to increase the amount of recycled content in the CedarBoards product and get closer to a closed-loop system. CertainTeed acted on the recommendation, becoming the first company to develop a post-consumer collection and recycling program for vinyl siding. Using a network of recyclers to collect end-of-life vinyl siding and installation scrap, CertainTeed created a closed-loop system that reduces the need for virgin materials, which drastically reduces both environmental and financial impacts while protecting against future material price fluctuations. The program is a growing success, and now a significant percent of the CedarBoards product is made from recycled material. Based on this and other operational improvements, SSC updated the LCA in 2009 and helped CertainTeed publish the results in BEES Online*.

Following the LCA, SSC then developed Green Marketing materials from the BEES data which enabled customers to accurately compare building envelope product options. Between 2011 and 2012, SSC increased the accuracy of the CedarBoards LCA results by conducting an LCA of the PVC resin plant from which the CedarBoards resin is sourced. This information was used to update the CedarBoards LCA model and associated BEES record with the most accurate data.

Realized Results

*BEES stands for Building for Environmental and Economic Sustainability. It is a government-hosted database that includes actual environmental and economic performance data of products to help designers and builders select environmentally preferable building products.