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10 Ways Hospital Construction Can Go Green

5

Green Materials

Does an area rug made of woven sea grass count as "green" material?
Does an area rug made of woven sea grass count as "green" material?
Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images

Using renewable materials is, again, good for the planet and the people. Are you sensing a theme here?

Take, for instance, the floor installed at Brigham and Women's in Boston. It's made of rubber, which is very renewable. It doesn't require harsh chemicals to clean it, which saves the lungs of the maintenance staff and the people who have to walk that hallway every day. It's also soft, which is just nice. It is not, however, like a bouncy house, which is disappointing. But I bet one of those little hard rubber crazy balls would go like nuts on it.

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There are tons of renewable materials that are pretty easy to find, and as green construction gains a foothold everywhere, these things are getting cheaper, too. "If there was a premium cost associated with a particular green product," John Messervy said, "it's negligible now." These materials include all the usual suspects, like bamboo, wool, linoleum and everybody's favorite, hemp.

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