Report by Liz White, UTI editor and Louise McHenry, UI staff
At the 2011 Ecobuild exhibition, held 1-3 March in the ExCel centre in London, visitors were faced with innumerable ways to help them construct energy-efficient homes, many of them rather quirky and not all of them noticeably sustainable.
But the polyurethane insulation industry was represented -and not just from the UK, see Icynene story and companies were keen to promote the green aspects of their various insulation products.
For the exhibition, the UK SIP Association, the trade body representing manufacturers of structural insulated panels (SIPs) in the UK, built a pair of dwellings which complied with Passivhaus’ standards.
Passivhaus is a European standard for energy-efficient constructions, in which minimal or no energy input is needed to heat/cool the building.
Interest in the technology is high, according to Peter Barr of the UK SIP Associa tion Ltd, who is also commercial director of SIP Co. Ltd, based in Widnes, in the north of England.
“In the UK, obviously the crash has affected business,” said Barr. “But this year we’ve seen a noticeable increase in inquiry levels right across all sectors from self-build through to developers,” he added.
Self-builders were the early adopters when SIP Co. started 5-6 years ago, but now the markets are more aware of SIP technology, Barr said. Some three years ago, architects/builders started to get more interested and become aware of it, he…