Recycled Paper Solid Surface Countertops
So what other choices do you have for countertop options? We are all familiar with the ever popular solid surface countertop for kitchens and bathrooms but is there a similar product that is eco friendly? Today you can now find a solid surface countertop made from recycled paper!
These eco countertops are an outstanding option for the Sexy green home as they use very high levels of recycled content in their manufacture and use VOC free phenolic resins to create durable, long lasting and unique countertop materials. One of these recycled paper surface manufacturers who claims to be one of the "greenest" architectural surfaces on the market is a product out of Hoquiam, WA called "Paperstone"
These green countertops are made from 100% post consumer recycled cardboard or standard office paper and pressed with a proprietary petroleum free phenolic resin. The end result is an extremely durable, non absorbent, fire retardant surface for kitchens, bathrooms, outdoor areas.
ShetkaStone, is another manufacturer producing recycled countertops but they use 100% recycled paper, plant and cloth fibre, including wax paper, telephone books and glossy paper to create a slurry mixture that is then formed it into hardened slabs suitable for countertops, bathroom vanities, table tops, wall panels and custom tiles. Another manufacturer who specializes in paper solid surfaces is RichLite. They do not use as much recycled content as the others but their paper is sourced from sustainable resources, forests and suppliers. They also us a VOC free Phenolic resin in their manufacturing and does not emit any off gases.
Environmental Impact of recycled paper countertop surfaces
Paperston recycled solid surfaces are made from 100% recycled post consumer paper and mixed with a phenolic, petroleum free resin to make their surfaces. The Original series is made from 50% post consumer recycled cardboard and the "Certified Series" is made from 100% post consumer recycled standard office paper. Paperstone is certified by Smart wood, The Rainforest Alliance and The Forest Stewardship council.
According to Paperstoneproducts.com a 1" by 60" by 144" Slab of Paperstone "Certified Series" will save 1233 gallons of water, 2.03 million BTU's of energy, 131 pounds of solid waste, 254 pounds of petroleum based phenol and 22 pounds of natural gas based methanol compared to a regular phenolic composite manufactured with virgin fibre and commercial solvent.
Paperstone surfaces are also subject to color shifting as they do react to UV light but the coloring systems used for Paperstone Surfaces have been selected for maximum coloring stability. Paperstone Solid Surfaces can help building projects qualify for up to 9 LEED Credits
Health Impact of Recycled paper Solid surface countertops
Recycled Solid Surface countertops are extremely resistant to staining, are abrasive resistant, absorb very little water and they carry a Class A fire rating and are extremely fire resistant. They are extremely low VOC emitting and formaldehyde is non detectable. Paperstone and Richlite use phenolic surfaces, making the surface extremely durable, think billiard ball tough, and this phenolic process is used on some cutting board surfaces making them highly scratch resistant repelling bacteria and germs.
It is highly recommended that any Paperstone surfaces that may come in contact with food preparation should use the Paperstone finish on the surface. This Bee and Carnauba wax mixed with food grain mineral oil will help preserve the surface and make it suitable for food preparation. One 12 oz. Bottle of Paperstone Finish will cover approx. 120 Sq. Feet.
The Sexy Green Home Opinion:
We really like recycled paper surfaces for a sexy green home as it is high in recycled content, some manufacturers use a proprietary, low emission, petroleum free, phenolic resin, and the surfaces are extremely durable, making them versatile and usable in several capacities in the home.
Kitchen countertops, furniture, walls, cabinets and rain screening all require strength and recycled paper solid surfaces and composites are definitely tough products. They can be warm to the touch, extremely fire resistant and available in several colors to help you create a design that suits your needs. How can we not love this versatile eco product and hopefully you will too.