Master Builder

Winter 2021

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BY JAMES SLONE CONTENT SPECIALIST MBAKS Think Global, Build Local T he Puget Sound region is leading the nation when it comes to green construction, and local certification programs like Built Green are codifying what it means to be truly sustainable. Just this year, the U.S. Department of Energy awarded a quarter of its Housing Innovation Awards, an honor that considers builders from all 50 states, to Washington builders. But there is always more to learn in the fast-advancing field of green construction. One of the best places to find companies and products that think outside the box is, well, outside the box of national borders. When you look abroad, you'll find hundreds of exciting new ideas, brands, and technologies that represent both the latest in science and centuries of accumulated wisdom from the cultures that developed them. Sonja O'Claire, manager of Built Green, explains that "while local materials have historically been the greenest option, the positives of adopting carbon-reducing innovations from around the planet can sometimes outweigh the negatives of global transport." But, she adds, "before buying international products, green builders should perform a life cycle assessment to weigh costs and benefits." With that in mind, let's take a brief tour of some of the best products the world offers. A Brief Tour of the Latest in Sustainable Building Products From Around the World When you look abroad, you'll find hundreds of exciting new ideas, brands, and technologies. A bright bedroom arranged atop Amorim WISE cork flooring. 45 WINTER 2021 | master BUILDER FEATURE STORY

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