Insulation Talk - November 2014
Welcome to our InsulationTalk e-bulletin. We hope you find our news informative and useful on keeping you up to date on our progress within product development and manufacturing as well as the latest news within the industry.
In this issue....
- Knauf Insulation highlights the benefits a political agreement on energy efficiency could bring to the UK
- Sponsors of this year's RCI Show 2014
- Earthwool OmniFit: Fitter Friendly' insulation
- Knauf Insulation invests in its manufacturing plant in Hartlepool
- SME housebuilders and zero carbon: we need actions as well as words
- Shortlist success for Knauf Insulation at the Builders Merchants News (BMN) Awards
Knauf Insulation highlights the benefits a political agreement on energy efficiency could bring to the UK
A new report from Cambridge Econometrics has revealed the huge benefits of a national energy efficiency programme and also shows up the gaps in party conference commitments, says Josh Robson, Head of Public Affairs at Knauf Insulation.
The cheapest and most secure energy available is that which we don’t use. However, as energy bills are a pressing concern for many families, and instability abroad continues to make energy supplies uncertain, the UK does not have a long term commitment to reduce the amount that we need in the first place.
Successive governments have sketched the aspiration for a ‘low carbon transition’, greater ‘energy security’ and to ‘end fuel poverty’, but to date no practical policies to deliver these aspirations have been fully developed.
Yet new research out this week from Cambridge Econometrics demonstrates just what a hugely positive story improving UK homes makes.
Insulating 6 million homes by 2025, as part of a wider energy efficiency plan up to 2030, will create 108,000 jobs. It will provide a threefold increase in GDP for every pound spent by government and grow the tax base too, returning £1.20 for every £1 government invests.
You can read the rest of Josh's entry on our Built on Performance blog.
We have also produced an infographic on the topic which can be viewed on ourVisul.Ly page.
Sponsors of this year's RCI Show 2014
Knauf Insulation was the official sponsor of the RCI Show 2014, which took place last week at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry.
Many visitors were attracted to its large stand to learn more about the new Fitter Friendly Earthwool® OmniFit range, which was specifically designed as an easy to fit, multi-purpose insulation solution for multiple applications. What’s more, with the chance to win two tickets to this season’s El Clasico game by answering a question on the new range, visitors were jumping at the chance to learn more about OmniFit Slab, OmniFit Roll andOmniFit Stud.
Throughout the two days, demonstrations on how to install its Earthwool Rafter Roll Ready Cut were also taking place to express how easy the products are to cut – using the perforated lines within the packaging – and ultimately, how easy it is to install.
Additionally, James Hulbert, Knauf Insulation’s Product Manager – Rock Mineral Wool, was also a key seminar speaker on the first day of the show, delivering an entertaining and informative speech on Building Envelope Solutions and BIM.
You can watch a snapshot of our time at last week's RCI Show by clicking the image below.
Earthwool OmniFit: A 'Fitter Friendly' insulation solution
Knauf Insulation responds to detailed feedback from trade specialists with the launch of a new insulation range: Earthwool OmniFit, specifically designed as an easy to fit multi-purpose insulation solution for multiple applications.
Following extensive research with builders, contractors and insulation specialists, the Earthwool OmniFit range has been designed for multiple applications and provides outstanding thermal, acoustic and fire performance across three products: Earthwool OmniFit Slab, OmniFit Roll and OmniFit Stud.
Steve Smith, Market Development Manager at Knauf Insulation commented: “Our research revealed some startling results; 89 per cent of installers surveyed would be keen to trial an alternative product to existing flexible slabs and rock mineral wool rolls, if it meant that handling would be easier and the products would be softer to touch. We realised that we had to fill this gap and therefore developed the new Earthwool OmniFit insulation range.
“Earthwool OmniFit also delivers exceptional environmental performance as it is manufactured using the innovative ECOSE® Technology - resulting in a softer, easy to cut and handle insulation product. What’s more, Knauf Insulation was the world's first company to receive the coveted Eurofins Indoor Air Comfort Gold standard for its glass mineral wool products made with ECOSE Technology - a characteristic that not only benefits the end user but also the installers fitting the product.”
With a thermal conductivity of 0.035W/mK across all thicknesses – an improvement on existing flexible slabs available in the market – Earthwool OmniFit Slab is suitable for both timber and metal stud applications and is available in either 400mm or 600mm wide variants.
Earthwool OmniFit Roll, has been designed specifically for loft insulation, internal partition walls, internal floors and separating floor applications. With a thermal conductivity of 0.040W/mK, the product has a density in excess of 10kg/m3 in order to meet compliance with acoustic Building Regulations.
Earthwool OmniFit Stud is a roll product designed with a high level of thermal performance – 0.034W/mK, ideal for use within rafters and both timber and light steel frame walls. It has a 1200mm width allowing installers the flexibility to cut the product on site to suit the application.
The multi-purpose Earthwool OmniFit range will be available to purchase from a variety of stockists around the country. Please call 0844 800 0135 or visit www.fitterfriendly.co.uk for more information.
Knauf Insulation invests in Hartlepool
Knauf Insulation is delighted to announce that it is investing in a new extruder facility for its extruded polystyrene (XPS) manufacturing plant in Hartlepool, Teeside.
Despite recent challenging market conditions within the insulation industry, Knauf Insulation is dedicated to delivering robust and innovative insulation solutions for specifiers and customers.
We are also committed to the local community and our employees, and recognise that substantial investment such as this is essential to help grow the local economy and safeguard the future for our employees.
Stuart Bell, General Manager at Hartlepool, comments: “This is a really exciting time for us all here at Hartlepool. We plan to have the new equipment in place by the end of 2015 creating additional capacity to meet the growing demand from the commercial building sector, and through this investment we hope to demonstrate our commitment to help boost the local economy.”
The XPS products manufactured at Hartlepool are known as Polyfoam ECO insulation. A range which has been extensively tested by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) and is the only range of extruded polystyrene (XPS) products to have been independently assessed to achieve a Certified Green Guide Rating of ‘A’. This in turn allows for specifiers and installers to have the utmost confidence that the products provide a proven sustainable solution.
SME housebuilders and zero carbon - we need actions as well as words
While the debate on how to tackle the UK’s housing crisis rages on, there have been suggestions from a number of quarters that smaller housebuilders could play a significant role in meeting the challenge. As part of his independent review of housing policy, Sir Michael Lyons has proposed an annual target of 200,000 new homes across England. Crucially, he has emphasised that small- and medium-sized developers could prove vital in helping us to achieve these aspirations.
Similarly, a recent report from the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE) titled Increasing Diversity in the Housebuilding Sector – published in July 2014 – argued that smaller housebuilders should be empowered through national and local initiatives to build more and better homes. The report cited advantages that smaller companies can offer over their national counterparts, such as the ability to produce locally focused developments and more energy efficient housing.
Working with SME regional housebuilders, the team at SIG360 NewBuild has certainly noted a steady increase in interest over the past few months from smaller companies starting to develop new sites. However, in spite of the support voiced by Sir Michael Lyons and others, current market conditions are making it much more difficult for SME housebuilders to compete with large housebuilders for a greater share of the sector.
You can read the rest of Andrew's entry on our Built on Performance blog.
Shortlist success for Knauf Insulation at the Builders Merchant News (BMN) Awards
For this category the judges were looking for a supplier that has done the most to help and support their merchant customers. Knauf Insulation wholly demonstrated this throughout its award entry as it endeavours to collaborate and create effective working partnerships with its merchant customers.
Providing dedicated support to their merchant customers Knauf Insulation understands the importance of delivering bespoke customer service.
Strong relationships are key to an effective supply chain and in particular the ability to listen and respond accordingly to customer feedback. Knauf Insulation continually reviews products and processes with its trade specialists and most notably this year, developed a brand new insulation range – Earthwool OmniFit®- in direct response to merchant customers.
On the 21st November Knauf Insulation will join other shortlisted companies at the BMN Awards ceremony at the Lancaster Hotel in London, where the winners will be announced.