Materials Resources
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Essex County Greenbelt

Materials were recycled during construction wherever possible; for example, floorboards from the original 18th century building were used to construct office desks and conference tables; original Indian shutters were also reused as decorative features for the new office space.

Native New England woods were used for interior flooring and trim.

New office rugs made of natural fiber were installed throughout the building.

An on-site recycling center provides a repository for all papers products and glass and metal containers

Energy-efficient appliances (HVAC and EnergyStar) are installed in the staff kitchen.

New organizational policies instituted to use significantly more recycled papers and other materials for all publications, events and other daily operations.

New England Biolabs

100% of the total roofing on NEB's Ipswich headquarters is energy star compliant.

7% of NEB's laboratory building is composed of recycled material.

30% of the materials used in the construction of our new facility originated within 500 miles of the site.

Gloucester Residence

Existing siding was encapsulated with foam insulation, eliminating the need to remove and dispose of old siding material in a landfill or incinerator.

Closed-cell spray foam insulation is agriculturally-based and is derived from sugar beets.

HardiPlank siding is a composite material made from cement and wood waste products.

All aluminum storm windows and flashing removed from the building were recycled.

Roof shingles are lightest color available for maximum solar heat reflection.


EBSCO Publishing

All paper products used in bathrooms and kitchenettes made of 100% recycled paper.

Recycled paper used in most of our printers and copiers.

Use of Environment-friendly, non-toxic cleaning products and pesticides.

Cider HIll Farm
Through the adoption of a rigorous compost program, we have increased our average soil organic matter content from 2% to 8 - 10% over the last 20 years. This provides a healthy soil capable of sustaining our crops with less fertilization and actually helps with some disease control attributes.

Latitude 43
Kirei Board was used in construction. This new “plywood” is made from material that used to be thrown away. Stalks from the Sorghum plant are heat-pressed with a non-toxic adhesive to form a lightweight, strong, board where each one is unique. “Kirei” means pretty in Japanese.

Plyboo was used for tables. Plyboo is plywood made from 100 percent renewable bamboo. It is stronger than oak, yet lightweight and eco-friendly. Bamboo is a giant grass and one of the fastest growing plants in the world.

The granite in the fireplace and the harbor walk supports was quarried on Cape Ann. Less transportation means less CO2. Cape Ann became a major source of granite through the Northeast because of the short transportation distance between the quarries and deep water.

Recycled glass was used in kitchen tiles.

Carpet tiles around the sushi bar are recycled and recyclable. These Interface carpet tiles come from a company that takes in old carpet and turned them into new carpets.

6 Salvaged materials were used as often as possible. For example, the Rescue Boat Hull that hangs over the bar was once rotting in a shipyard. The bar itself has been refinished and put back in service from what was once abandoned. Some of the granite outside has been salvaged from a Boston fountain and an old boat slip.

Downriver Ice Cream
The milk we use for our ice cream is hormone and antibiotic free, and comes from New England farms

Our fruit is primarily locally grown and organic. Even our doggie treats for the Dog Bar Sundae will be all-natural and locally made.

We use compost-able plastic utensils and cardboard containers to serve our ice cream.

Innovation and Design Resources

Building for Environmental and Economic Sustainability (BEES)
Easy-to-use program for selecting cost-effective, environmentally preferable building products.

Environmental Building News
A monthly newsletter and website with comprehensive overview articles on materials choices and detailed product reviews.

Oikos Green Building Source
Features a database on green building products.

Green Seal
This nonprofit organization sets standards for green products and offers product recommendations.

Green Building Resource Guide
A comprehensive resource guide for environmentally friendly building materials.

Environmental Design+Construction Buyer's Guide
Database of resources and suppliers of green building materials.


Sustainable design strategies and measures are constantly evolving and improving. This page describes and depicts some of the strategies employed by Essex county individuals and organizations.