From the moment our company was founded in 1994 (under the name of "TimberGrass"), we have been committed to developing and manufacturing beautiful bamboo products that:
* Reduce dependence on dwindling timber resources
* Rely on renewable-resource materials
* Adhere to stringent, environmentally sensitive specifications
* Promote green building
* Help neutralize our company's environmental footprint
Teragren products, green building and LEED® credits
As a pioneer in the bamboo flooring industry, Teragren has championed strict environmental standards. We have worked with the U.S. Green Building Council to promote their LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System™, a system that has become the national standard. Because bamboo is a rapidly renewable resource, all of our products contribute to LEED certification under MR Credit 6: Rapidly Renewable Materials. Two Teragren products—Synergy™ solid-strip strand bamboo flooring with Xcora™ technology and bamboo butcher block countertops—also comply with EQ Credit 4.4: Low-Emitting Materials. In addition, you may special-order most of our non-compliant products to be made with adhesives that comply with EQ Credit 4.4.* Please call 800.929.6333 or email for details on our EQ 4.4 Enhanced program. For more information about Teragren products and sustainability issues, refer to our Teragren: Material and Sustainability Report.
*Does not include Studio or Synergy™ floating floor.
Sustainably harvested Optimum 5.5® Moso bamboo
For Teragren bamboo flooring, stair parts, trim, panels and veneer, we use only Optimum 5.5® Moso bamboo (Phyllostachys pubescens) known for its dense fibers and grown in the Zhejiang province of China. We also require that the bamboo is sustainably harvested at maturity, every 5-1/2 to 6 years. With these specifications, we avoid product performance problems like cupping and warping associated with young, soft and often inexpensive bamboo that is harvested too soon. As a result, Teragren products are exceptionally durable and our source plants remain vigorous and healthy harvest after harvest.
Carbon sequestration: cleaner air, carbon offsets
In addition to relieving pressure on degraded forests, bamboo contributes to efforts to reduce global warming. Bamboo's leafy canopy releases 35 percent more oxygen than a comparable cluster of hardwood trees, especially when you consider that the bamboo re-grows and reproduces a canopy many times in its lifespan. In the renewing process, the plant grabs carbon from the air and holds it within its stalk and root system where, in nature, it is not released until the soil in which the plant decomposes is turned. Products made from bamboo take that carbon out of circulation. Teragren bamboo products harvested and manufactured correctly can last for many generations, keeping carbon locked up over the life of the products and helping to offset carbon usage that occurs in shipping our products to market.
Environmentally conscious specifications
Teragren specifications protect the environment around the world and in your home. The durable factory finish on our flooring is water-based and solvent-free. Teragren's proprietary manufacturing adhesive emits less formaldehyde than allowed by U.S. OSHA, European E0, CARB Phase 1 and CARB Phase 2, and Japanese JIS/JAS (F****) emissions standards. As a company, we are moving swiftly toward exclusive use of adhesives that comply with LEED EQ Credit 4.4 in all our products.
Positioned to do things right
As a manufacturer, not simply an importer, we control our production process from harvest to distribution. For 10 years, we have partnered with a single factory group in China that shares our commitment to quality, environmental responsibility, safety and sustainable business practices, including fair wages and safe working conditions. Our factories are ISO 9001:2000 and 14001-certified and the production process includes 11 quality-control inspection stations as well as spot checks by a quality control engineer.
Teragren is a member of Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). We follow the principles of The Natural Step program that focuses on applying basic concepts of sustainability. Every effort is made to reduce, reuse and recycle what we can. For example, we sell unused portions of each bamboo culm to manufacturers to make other bamboo products and we use shavings from our own milling process as fuel in other parts of our factories.
Measuring our environmental footprint
A core component of the Teragren mission is to measure our company's environmental footprint and work toward mitigating—and ultimately neutralizing—its environmental impact. This arduous process has been completed at our Bainbridge Island office, which is now carbon neutral, and is underway at our factories in China.
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