DELANO, Minn.—Industrial Louvers, Inc. (ILI) is pleased to announce that its painted sunshades have received recognition as one of BuildingGreen’s Top 10 Products for 2019. By receiving this honor, ILI joins an exclusive list of innovative companies that show leadership in developing products that significantly improve upon business-as-usual practices. Throughout the award’s 17-year history, BuildingGreen’s independent team of editors has rigorously evaluated products in a wide range of categories and selected 10 each year that best save energy and water, contain fewer hazardous materials and promote material transparency.
Brent Ehrlich, products and materials specialist at BuildingGreen explains: “Truly sustainable products have life cycles that positively impact our communities as well as our buildings. That is why we gave Industrial Louvers Custom Aluminum Sunshades a BuildingGreen Top 10 Award this year. Their sunshades save energy, improve occupant comfort and contain no red-list chemicals. Moreover, the company has also earned an ILFI Living Product Challenge Petal Certification and a Just Label for its positive overall environmental and social impacts.”
As part of the Living Product Challenge project, ILI’s team performed a life-cycle assessment of their painted sunshade and calculated the corresponding savings in energy, water and climate impacts to measure the point at which the products become net positive. In hot climates, the products reach net positive threshold in just two years. The manufacturing process is also net positive after implementation of a rainwater catchment system that collects all of the water required to manufacture its sunshade products.
“We knew that the products provided environmental benefits in buildings. But energy, water and climate are only part of the equation,” explains Jo Reinhardt, president and CEO of ILI. “Pursuing the Living Product Challenge provided a structured and holistic lens with which to evaluate all our operations,” she adds.
ILI evaluated policies and performance related to diversity, equity, safety, worker benefits, community benefits and stewardship, which allowed them to be the first U.S. manufacturer to earn the International Living Future Institute’s Just Label. The company was also the first in its market sector to fully disclose the material ingredients in its products by publishing Health Product Declarations (HPDs) and Declare Labels.
“Through the disclosure process, we were able to target and eliminate certain chemicals of concern, including hexavalent chromium and heavy metals. One of our goals was to show leadership in the industry, “ explains Lisa Britton, director of sales and marketing/sustainability champion. “By teaming with key suppliers, including Valspar (now Sherwin-Williams) and DuBois Chemicals, we created a process that is completely free of chrome and heavy metals. We proved it can be done and challenge other manufacturers to follow suit.”
ILI’s sustainability efforts are not limited to their sunshade products. The company implemented the same manufacturing and finishing process they use for sunshades across all product lines. Learn more about ILI’s commitment to sustainability by visiting their website at www.industriallouvers.com.
About Industrial Louvers, Inc.
ILI is a customer-focused, woman-owned and -operated manufacturer of custom architectural metal products, including architectural louvers, equipment screens, decorative grilles, sunshades and column covers. Since 1971, ILI has been helping meet the needs of designers, contractors and subcontractors across all segments of the construction industry. The company’s position as a leader in the industry is based on its reputation for manufacturing products of the highest quality and craftsmanship, and providing unmatched customer service.
About Building Green
BuildingGreen helps architects, designers and sustainability professionals make their projects greener and better for our environments. Since 1985, BuildingGreen has been the trusted source on healthy and sustainable design and construction strategies. They support building professionals with membership websites at BuildingGreen.com and LEEDuser.com, and with customized consulting and training services.
BuildingGreen’s focus is on helping professionals design and build from a whole-systems perspective. They support teams that use an integrative process that reduces ecological impact—or even provides regenerative support for ecosystems—and that maximizes return on investment, both financially and in benefits to people.