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Aetna Helps Insure Health of the Environment by Recycling Old Acoustical Ceiling Panels


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Ceilings Walls Suspension Systems Trims & Transitions Building Perimeter Systems Drywall Grid Systems

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As a leading worldwide provider of health services, Aetna Inc. is uniquely aware of the environment and its effect on the earth's inhabitants. That's one reason why it recently recycled 60,000 square feet (approximately 30 tons) of old acoustical ceiling panels rather than dumping them in a landfill.

Headquartered in Hartford, Aetna decided to transform its nearby Windsor, Connecticut office facility into a call center. The 180,000-square-foot project was scheduled to be completed in phases, with the first phase comprising about 60,000 square feet of office space. As part of the renovation, contractors were to remove all existing acoustical ceiling panels and replace them with new panels.

In a renovation project of this type, old suspended ceiling panels would normally be removed, thrown into a dumpster, and eventually taken to a landfill for disposal. This project, however, was different.

When Aetna's facility management team learned of the Ceiling Recycling Program offered by Armstrong World Industries, they believed it was the way to go. By providing a means of recycling discarded ceiling panels rather then sending them to a landfill, the program fit well into the company's own environmental strategies.

The program itself enables building owners to quickly and easily ship old ceilings from renovation projects to an Armstrong ceiling plant as an alternative to harmful landfill disposal. Under the program, Armstrong even pays freight costs for shipping the old ceilings, which it uses as raw materials in the manufacture of new, high-performance acoustical ceilings.

The program involves three steps. First, building owners need to verify that their old ceiling tiles can be recycled. Neither the old nor the new replacement ceilings need to be Armstrong products to qualify for the program. At Aetna, the existing non-foil-backed ceiling panels were found to be recyclable and therefore eligible for the program.

Following verification, owners must then stack their old ceiling tiles on pallets and wrap them for pick-up. Once there is a full trailer load of old ceilings, the owner simply contacts Armstrong. The company will then work with the owner to arrange for a truck to pick up the material anywhere in the continental United States and transfer it to its nearest manufacturing facility.

In a recent time analysis, the process for recycling old ceilings proved to be nearly as fast as dumping them, so the program has little, if any, adverse impact on larger demolition schedules. It can also be less expensive than the cost of local handling, transport, dumpster and landfill fees.

To obtain additional information on the Armstrong Ceiling Recycling Program call 1-877-ARMSTRONG (1-877-276-7876) or visit www.armstrong.com on the Internet for complete product information.

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