Believe it or not, after nearly a century, an American company has come up with a new drywall technology, called EcoRock. Breaking away from the age old traditional gypsum drywall, used extensively for construction purposes, Serious Materials, the California based firm, has come up with this energy efficient eco-friendly building material.

EcoRock is the first of its kind that uses 80% of post-industrial recycled material including wastes from steel and cement plants minus the gypsum. It outperforms all other mould-resistant drywalls by 50%, and is termite free at the same time. Ecorock significantly reduces the amount of air contaminators produced indoors over any other drywall. It produces 60% less dust and is supposed to produce absolutely no side effects of airborne mercury as opposed to the production of other wallboard material. Used just like gypsum drywall, its cleaner, smoother score and snap comparatively. Meeting 100% of ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) C1396 physical drywall properties, it can contribute up to 8 LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) credits, a major surpass in ecological efficiency.

It can be used as a ph additive (potential hydrogen) in soils, to check its alkalinity and the acidity for plant growth. It is also reused as a raw material for its own production and other building materials of similar nature. It produces no mercury and requires 80% less energy in its production resulting in 80% less CO2 emissions. The material is so green that it congeals without heat but with water.

Conventional Drywall on the other hand is made of Gypsum, by heating it in 500 degrees of kilns, producing 20 billion pounds of green house gases. , Although the cost of the “green” material is supposedly high, costing approximately around $14-$20 per 4×8-foot sheet, as opposed to $8-$9 per –foot sheet. But since, gypsum drywall is wasted in its installation, resulting in usage of larger quantities, than estimated with the added cost of disposal, as it cannot be recycled unlike EcoRock, which also happens to have a better hold than the material , all adds up to be less economical in comparison.

The firm that had spent a fortune to come up with the new technology received the 2008 Popular Green Tech Award. They basically work for the development of sustainable green building materials that bring about spectacular changes in the climate by reducing the pressure off these substances that are the major source of waste in the environment It has come up with materials like Serious Windows, high-performance insulated windows and glass, which can reduce heating and cooling energy costs and emissions up to 40%.

But all’s well, till the life altering substance hits the market, that we would truly be able to decipher its true susceptibility when it comes to use. However keeping in mind the overall assessment of the material the product seems promising so far.

Ankita Deb