Our manufacturing process combines heat and pressure to form a solid panel core. A natural polymer in the straw fibre is extracted during this process and acts as a natural binding agent. A water-based PVA glue is used to cover the panel in recycled Kraft liner paper. No additional chemical binding agents, glues or resins are added during the manufacturing process of our sustainable wall and ceiling panels. Our process also requires no water or gas, and produces zero toxic waste. Plus, Durra Panel can be recycled or composted at the end of its lifespan, making it one of the world’s most sustainable and eco-friendly building materials as it is 100% recyclable and 100% biodegradable.
Around 9km of Durra Panel was used to create the partition walls in the Media Centre during the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Once the Olympics had finished, the panels were taken down, shredded in a mulcher, and then used as compost throughout gardens across Sydney. Because they are 100% biodegradable, Durra Panels don’t end up in landfills at the end of their lifespan, and can instead be used as compost or recycled and used again. This avoids contributing to the millions of tonnes of waste that end up in landfills across Australia each year.
Durra Panel has an embodied energy content of only 12.6 MJ/m² throughout its entire manufacturing process. In addition, the straw it is made from grows quickly, making it an easily replenished resource. On the other hand, a stud and plaster wall has an embodied energy content of 153 MJ/m² and the timber used takes thirty years to grow, putting a much greater drain on resources.
To explain that in practical terms, it takes seven acres of straw to build a standard three-bedroom house with Durra Panel and that straw will regrow in a year as a by-product of harvesting wheat or straw. The 44 trees used in a typical stud-and-plaster-wall house on the other hand requires the clear felling of around half an acre of forest and takes around 30 years to regrow. Unlike building materials such as wood which is specifically grown for construction and takes such a long time to regrow, straw is a waste resource and provides a more eco-friendly alternative that can grow much quicker.
Another sustainable benefit of Durra Panel is its engineered biomass core, which extracts CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) from the atmosphere rather than emitting it. For every square metre of Durra Panel, 31kg of carbon dioxide emissions has been extracted from the atmosphere. And out of that 31kg, each panel of our sustainable ceiling and wall cladding contains 8.5kg of that stored carbon and locks it away, which helps to reduce carbon emissions.
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