News

Posted on Nov 16, 2021 in General

Turn Black Friday GREEN

As Thanksgiving approaches, so does a range of retail-focused days, including Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. We all want our holiday gifts to be magical and memorable, but often these purchases have real human health and environmental impacts. Learn how you can make choices that are healthier and safer for your family and the environment.

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Posted on Nov 16, 2021 in General

Industry Leaders You Should Know: Simona Fischer, MSR Design

As registered architect, sustainable design professional, and associate with MSR Design, Simona Fischer has spent much of her career thus far developing and testing strategies for integrating sustainable design into the workflow of architectural practice. She was instrumental in the Living Building Challenge Petal Certification of MSR Design’s new downtown Minneapolis headquarters, which achieved the materials, beauty, and equity petals. We sat down with Simona to learn more and to get her perspective on the green building industry today.

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Posted on Nov 16, 2021 in General

New HomeFree Resource: How to Create Healthier Materials Guidelines

HomeFree is excited to announce a brand new resource designed to help architects, building owners, managers, and developers create materials guidelines that support human and environmental health in housing projects. Conceived as a complementary resource to HBN’s product guidance, this guide will walk you through how to institutionalize healthier material considerations across your projects and organization. 

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Posted on Oct 27, 2021 in General

Addressing the Plastics Crisis: Why Vinyl Has to Go

If we are to have any chance of addressing the global plastics crisis, Polyvinyl Chloride plastic (PVC), also known as vinyl, has got to go. In this article, HBN founder Bill Walsh explains the technical, economic, and behavioral reasons why.

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Posted on Oct 27, 2021 in General

What to Know When Selecting Water Pipes

Water intake pipes are different from a lot of other building materials as they are one of the only materials that come directly into contact with the water that we drink, cook with, and wash with everyday. HBN recently released a new Water Pipes Hazard Spectrum comparing the impacts of different pipe materials from a health perspective.

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Posted on Oct 27, 2021 in General

Two New Faces Continue Growth at HBN

HBN is thrilled to introduce you to two new staff members: Lindsy “LB” Bissonnette, Development Manager, and Anjanette Green, Senior Director of Product Transformation.

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Posted on Oct 27, 2021 in General

The True Costs of Toxic Materials

The reality of today's materials market is that some products can be sold cheaply because someone else is carrying the burden of the true cost. In this article, we aim to expand your thinking about the cost of materials to account for the costs borne by individuals and fenceline communities who are exposed to toxic chemicals every day.

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Posted on Sep 27, 2021 in General

Transparency Report - Leaders and Laggards

Materials transparency is foundational to improving the health and safety of building materials. Last year, we wrote about the growth we’ve seen in the past decade in the amount and quality of data that’s available. This year we looked a little closer, and it’s clear that some product categories are ahead of others. When it comes to transparency, who's leading and who's lagging?

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Posted on Sep 27, 2021 in General

Low- and No-Cost Ways to Start Using Safer Materials

It can feel daunting to know where to start prioritizing material health in your work. You may feel like you don’t have the time or budget to select materials that are free of hazardous chemicals. Fortunately, there are some relatively simple, low- or no-cost ways to start incorporating healthier materials into your projects right away. By focusing on a few high-impact product categories with readily available healthier products, you can begin the process of preferring and specifying healthier materials without making significant changes to your bottom line.

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Posted on Sep 27, 2021 in General

Health is at the Center of Harvard’s New Engineering Complex

Earlier this year, Harvard University dedicated its new Science and Engineering Complex (SEC), a model for green building and the largest project and first research laboratory to achieve the ILFI's Living Building Challenge Petal Certification. We sat down with Harvard's Chief Sustainability Officer Heather Henriksen to learn more about the project and how HBN's work has guided Harvard's green building leadership.

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