Replacing PIR Insulation
PIR insulation is what makes up much of the insulation used currently in all types of construction. To manufacture it, we have to develop and sustain a number of chemical industries. It is effectively a plastic which is manufactured in massive quantities with a number of industrial chemicals in its supply chain. The supply chain often uses factories in far away places with little or no effective regulation. Some of the chemicals in the supply chain of PIR insulation include:
Aniline (toxic by inhalation of the vapour, ingestion, or percutaneous absorption; has the odor of rotten fish; largest producer in 2019 was the Wanhua Chemical Group from China; implicated as a possible cause of forest dieback)
Formaldehyde (toxic; volatile; poses a significant danger to health, well known and well documented)
Hydrochloric Acid (one of the strongest acids in existence)
Now, all of these are not dangerous in the final product as installed in walls. But we are sustaining the industries which produce and use these chemicals in continuing to use PIR and other unnatural insulations.
These chemicals themselves are manufactured with more chemicals in their supply chains. This involves mining, transportation, and more on a global scale as well throughout the entire supply chain. The implications of this are huge for all of us.
So what can we do? Replace this insulation in our building projects!
Straw bales are one example of what we can use for insulation instead of these types of insulation.
And horses can eat what's left over!
But the first step is recognising that we need to stop using this stuff.