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What’s new in green building materials
BEC Green is on a mission to help homeowners understand what green building materials are and where to get them. We also feature new green homes and speak with the wonderful builders, architects and designers who create them.
A Quick Basement Ceiling Renovation with Hemp InsuIation
As with most new homes built by developers, it came with an unfinished basement which the homeowners can opt to have finished or do it themselves. Ours came with a rushed finishing job that didn’t suit our needs.
A Passive House Plus Certified House Built In Brooklyn
Renovating to Passive House Plus standard creates a beautiful and low maintenance home in Brooklyn, NY. The home is warm in winter without standard HVAC.
Rating System for Water Efficient Toilets
The MaP rating system for toilets measures a toilet’s flush performance – how effective it is at doing its job. The minimum performance should be 350.
Havelock Sheep's Wool Insulation
Havelock sheep’s wool insulation is available in either batts or loose fill and has an R-value of 4.3. It stays resilient in humid environments.
IceStone Countertops: Recycled Glass and Cement
This post was updated on October 31, 2019. IceStone countertops are made from 75% post-industrial recycled glass, Portland cement and a non-petroleum-based binder in Brooklyn, New York. They look like a subtle terrazzo for your countertops. The company was...
Blu Homes Prefab Home Manufacturer Retreats From Canada (and everywhere but California)
Update as of October 29, 2019. I contacted Blu Homes this week to see if they were still offering to build homes in Canada. This is the response they sent me: We are currently not serving your geography and only available to build in California. If you do own land in...
The latest environment and green building news
Our Most Popular Posts
BEC Green posts about green building materials and homes our readers view the most.
NatureFibres hemp insulation is available in batts. The hemp used is grown mostly in Quebec and Ontario. The batts are made in Asbestos, Quebec. They have a better R-value than fibreglass batts, are mould, mildew and pest resistant, and are hygroscopic (water-loving).
Linoleum Flooring Guide
Linoleum flooring was a popular choice in homes until the invention of petroleum-based vinyl flooring. Linoleum is an all-natural flooring available in sheet or tile forms. It is made primarily from flax, combined with lime and wood flour and natural pigments.
Ontario's First Rammed Earth House
Reclaimed wood is a beautiful option for many homes that are either being renovated or built from scratch. Fortunately, in Ontario, there are plenty of choices. Reclaimed wood is often available in wider planks due to its coming from first or old-growth forests.
IceStone Countertops are made from recycled glass, Portland cement and a non-petroleum-based binder. The factory is located in Brooklyn, NY. The countertops come in a range of colours. Recently the company has upgraded the product so it is heat and stain resistant.
BEC Green Guides
Resource guides to help you navigate the complex world of better building materials, energy and water efficiency and more
Browse green building categories
Interior Finishes, Furniture & Lighting
- Paints and coatings
- Water fixtures
This category is all about materials used in the construction of the building envelope including windows, doors, roofing, wrap, cladding and rainscreens.
Building Materials & HVAC
- Adhesives & Sealants
- Drywall, lumber, etc.
- Heating & Cooling
Architecture & Design
A variety of information on green design including interviews with architects and contractors who specialize in designing and building green.
Prefab and Modular Homes
Prefab and modular homes are not only faster to construct, they can usually be made to higher environment standards. Further, because they are made off-site, they generate less construction waste than a standard build.
Green Building Techniques
There are plenty of ways to build green. Methods such as straw bale, rammed earth, and cross-laminated timber had fallen out of favour as brick and lumber-built methods became quicker, but they are getting a revival because of their postivie attributes.
- Energy efficiency guides
- Products to help your house become more energy efficient
Tips, tricks and product reviews for living a lower impact life. Articles cover waste management, green cleaning and more.
Gardening and Landscaping
- Landscaping for maximum energy and water efficiency
- Environmentally-friendly path and mortar systems
- rain-barrels and cisterns
- solar panels and residential wind turbines
Green Building Stores & Services
Where to buy green building products, hire green architects and contractors and track down strawbale builders, rammed earth builders and more.
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