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Forest Service Helps Hollywood Go Green

Forest Products Laboratory, U.S. Forest Service
February 15th, 2013 at 6:45PM

Hollywood’s first 100 percent sustainable studio set was created for 20th Century Fox’s  comedy series “Raising Hope” thanks to the efforts of the U.S. Forest Service’s Forest Products Laboratory  and NOBLE Environmental Technologies, a long-term collaborator with the laboratory.

NOBLE Environmental Technologies’ patented ECOR® panels, which were developed in partnership with laboratory researchers, were used to create a modern hotel suite for a two-part episode of the show.  ECOR® is a recycled, lightweight panel product that is strong but weighs as little as one-fourth the weight of conventional wood product panels. The product is 100 percent, USDA-certified bio-based and made with 100 percent cellulose fibers including post-consumer paper, wood and agricultural raw material sources. ECOR® contains no toxic additives or adhesives.

“The ongoing use of tropical hardwoods in set construction is an environmental tragedy and this experiment provided a cost-efficient alternative to unsustainable forest products, said “Raising Hope” art director John Zachary.

Zachary and 20th Century Fox were committed to integrating environmentally friendly paint, wallpaper, glue and carpet to complete the sustainable set. Zachary hopes this leads to more environmentally friendly set construction.

All the panels used on the set were fabricated at the Forest Products Laboratory in Madison, Wis., shipped to ECOR’s San Diego, Calif., facility and built into the set. This was made possible under recently expanded federal authority that allows private companies to fabricate materials with government equipment for commercial purposes.

“The collaboration between the Forest Products Laboratory and ECOR Global is a perfect example of how government and industry can work together to meet society’s needs,” says laboratory engineer John Hunt. “By combining our unique capabilities, we were able to turn research results into tangible products.”