Alcoa Helps Launch Green Products Innovation Institute Founded on Cradle-to-Cradle Principles

May 21, 2010

Kawneer C2C Certified Architectural Aluminum Building Products Manufactured at California Plant Using Renewable Energy Source

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--Alcoa, an early adopter of Cradle-to-Cradle (C2C) certification for its Kawneer architectural aluminum products, joined in the launch of the Green Products Innovation Institute (GPII), which took place yesterday at Google’s campus in Mountain View, California. The GPII is a nonprofit organization founded on the C2C program and principles defined by architect William McDonough and chemist Dr. Michael Braungart. California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger delivered the opening remarks at the inauguration of the Institute, which will be based in San Francisco.

C2C certification gives global manufacturers across industries a way to verify and market their products’ sustainability attributes and demonstrate environmental leadership. It takes into account five criteria across the creation of a product: material health, material reutilization, renewable energy use, water stewardship and social responsibility.

Today’s event marked the establishment of a new organization devoted to the C2C framework. MBDC, (McDonough, Braungart Design Chemistry), a consultancy organization, transformed industry by creating a design paradigm in 2005 in which materials are perpetually circulated in closed loops, which maximizes material values without damaging the ecosystem. Alcoa’s Kawneer business grasped the environmentally-intelligent design concept for several of its architectural aluminum building products and was on hand at the event to support the launch of the new Institute.

“Sustainability is at the heart of Kawneer’s product line, which is made up of aluminum, one of the earth’s most recyclable metals. C2C provides an important framework for selecting materials that are environmentally responsible. Several Kawneer products that are C2C certified are manufactured at our Visalia, California, plant using a renewable energy source – solar power,” said Eddie Bugg, Director, Sustainable Solutions for Kawneer.

Kawneer’s Visalia plant features a 588,000-watt, roof mounted photovoltaic (PV) solar-power system. In addition, more than 200 solar light tubes were installed to provide further daylighting and reduce energy cost.

The following Kawneer products, which have been C2C certified Silver since 2008, maximize energy savings, while reducing energy demand:

  • InLighten® Light Shelf reflects sunlight deep into the interior of a building by bouncing natural light up to the ceiling. Composed of an extruded aluminum chassis system and lightweight Aluminum Composite Material panel surfaces, the InLighten® Light Shelf is installed as an extension to the curtain wall. The assembled light shelf elements reduce requirements for perimeter artificial lighting and conserving electrical energy costs.
  • Kawneer's 1600 SunShade® can assist in achieving maximum daylighting while minimizing direct sunlight penetration and solar heat gain. 1600 SunShade® provides a variety of texture and design elements, which can be combined multiple ways for greater aesthetic versatility. It is pre-engineered and easily assembled, helping save installation time and money.
  • 1600 Wall System®1 and 1600 Wall System®2 provide reliability with versatile features. Both are stick-fabricated, pressure glazed curtain walls for low-to-mid-rise applications and designed to be used independently or as an integrated system to provide visual impact for almost any type of building.

About Alcoa
Alcoa (NYSE:AA) is the world’s leading producer of primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum and alumina. In addition to inventing the modern-day aluminum industry, Alcoa innovation has been behind major milestones in the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation, consumer electronics and industrial markets over the past 120 years. Among the solutions Alcoa markets are flat-rolled products, hard alloy extrusions, and forgings, as well as Alcoa® wheels, fastening systems, precision and investment castings, and building systems in addition to its expertise in other light metals such as titanium and nickel-based super alloys. Sustainability is an integral part of Alcoa’s operating practices and the product design and engineering it provides to customers. Alcoa has been a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for eight consecutive years and approximately 75 percent of all of the aluminum ever produced since 1888 is still in active use today. Alcoa employs approximately 59,000 people in 31 countries across the world. More information can be found at

About Kawneer
With more than 100 years of innovation and experience, Kawneer North America is headquartered in Norcross, GA, and is the leading manufacturer of architectural aluminum products and systems for the commercial construction industry. Kawneer is part of Alcoa’s global Building and Construction Systems (BCS) business unit. Alcoa BCS manufactures and markets architectural systems and products in North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Alcoa is the world’s leading producer and manager of primary aluminum, and alumina facilities, and is active in all major aspects of the industry. For more information on Kawneer or its products, please visit

Recent News

January 27, 2023
Howmet Aerospace Board Approves Common and Preferred Stock Dividends
January 13, 2023
Howmet Aerospace to Host Webcast and Announce Fourth Quarter 2022 and Full Year 2022 Results
November 17, 2022
Howmet Aerospace Board Approves Preferred Stock Dividend