UL Environment Releases New Industry-Wide Sustainability Requirements for Gypsum Wallboard

United States Gypsum Company First Company to Earn Gold Sustainability Certification for SHEETROCK® Brand UltraLight Panels

Oct 25, 2010, 14:48 ET from UL Environment, Inc.

NORTHBROOK, Ill., Oct. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- UL Environment, Inc., a global leader in environmental evaluation and certification, today announced the publication of ULE ISR 100 which sets standard requirements for environmentally preferable gypsum wall board and panels. United States Gypsum Company, a subsidiary of USG Corporation and a leading manufacturer of gypsum wallboard, is the first organization to earn certification to the requirements for the development of SHEETROCK® Brand UltraLight Panels. USG's SHEETROCK® UltraLight Panels, manufactured in the East Chicago, Ind., plant, have attained the Gold Level Certification indicating superior environmental and human health attributes against the requirements.

"Sustainability standards are the foundation for identifying environmentally preferable materials that help develop greener buildings and releasing the initial requirements is an important first step towards developing consensus-based standards," said Stephen Wenc, president of UL Environment. "UL Environment is building on more than a century of experience to address today's need to protect public health and the environment. We are committed to incorporating sustainability into standard development to create a win-win solution for businesses, people and the planet."

Over the past 15 months, UL Environment has conducted research into appropriate requirements and has recently led a collaborative effort to refine those requirements using input from a UL Environment Standards Technical Panel (STP) comprised of stakeholders representing a range of interest groups.

ULE ISR 100 contains categories which evaluate the product through the lens of materials management, energy use, water use, manufacturing and operations, health and environment, product performance, product stewardship and innovative practices which would lead products to achieve Silver, Gold or Platinum certification for superior achievement. The points are weighted in areas of highest impact. For gypsum board, some of the higher impact categories include energy use and materials management.

"These requirements provide the industry with a framework for developing innovative and sustainable products which help us achieve our broader sustainability goals. We are proud to be the first to carry this certification for gypsum wallboard," said James S. Metcalf, President and Chief Operating Officer, USG Corporation. "UL Environment conducted independent, scientific testing to prove the sustainability of SHEETROCK® UltraLight Panels, and the credibility of UL Environment enhances our position as a sustainability leader."

SHEETROCK® UltraLight Panels are up to 30% lighter and stronger pound-for-pound than standard 1/2" drywall. The lightweight panels are easier to carry and install than standard drywall, which helps reduce fatigue and reduces likelihood of injury. UL Environment previously validated environmental claims for this product which helped contribute points to the certification process. These claims include: SHEETROCK® UltraLight Panels are made with up to 95 percent recycled content, offer up to a 20 percent reduction in transportation energy, conserve raw materials by up to 15 percent, and qualify as a low volatile organic compound (VOC) emitting material.

Products tested and certified to meet the new requirements are eligible to carry the UL Environment Sustainable Product Certification Mark on the product and associated marketing, technical, and packaging materials along with the level of certification obtained.

Products certified to the gypsum wallboard sustainability requirements can be found online at www.ulenvironment.com. For more information on USG SHEETROCK® UltraLight Panels, please visit www.theweighthasbeenlifted.com. UL Environment will also be on site at the 2010 International Greenbuild Show in Chicago, IL November 17-19, 2010.

About UL Environment, Inc.

UL Environment (ULE) is a full-service environmental solutions company. UL Environment is helping support the growth and development of sustainable products, services and companies in the global marketplace through standards development, independent third-party assessment and certification and knowledge services. UL Environment is a wholly owned subsidiary of Underwriters Laboratories, a global leader in conformity assessment that has been testing products and writing standards for more than a century. UL Environment currently offers Environmental Claims Validation (ECV), a service testing and verifying manufacturers' self-declared environmental claims and Sustainable Products Certification (SPC), a service evaluating and certifying products to accepted industry standards for environmental sustainability and Energy Efficiency Certification (EEC), a service testing and verifying product compliance with mandatory and voluntary energy efficiency regulations and programs. UL Environment is developing additional environmental standards, as well as training and advisory services to support organizations in the sustainable products and services industry. More information is available at www.ulenvironment.com.

About USG

USG Corporation is a manufacturer and distributor of high-performance building systems through its United States Gypsum Company, USG Interiors, Inc., L&W Supply Corporation and other subsidiaries. Headquartered in Chicago, USG's worldwide operations serve the residential and non-residential construction markets, repair and remodel construction markets, and industrial processes. USG's wall, ceiling, flooring and roofing products provide leading-edge building solutions for customers, while L&W Supply center locations efficiently stock and deliver building materials nationwide. For additional information, visit the USG Web site at www.usg.com.

SOURCE UL Environment, Inc.