BETHESDA, Md. — The EPDM Roofing Association (ERA) has launched a comprehensive source of research results and analysis on cool, or reflective, roofing. The material is designed to provide a user-friendly and up-to-the-minute reference library to help guide building owners, architects, contractors and specifiers in the choice of the appropriate roofing material for a wide variety of climates. The source can be accessed on the ERA’s website.

“Our goal is to ensure that our current and potential customers have the information they need to choose and use our products successfully,” said John Geary, of Firestone Building Products and chairman of ERA’s Board of Directors. “The science behind the choice of a roofing material is changing rapidly, and it’s not enough to help create the curve of understanding. We want to always stay ahead of the curve.”

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the founding of ERA. During the last decade, ERA has provided the industry with up-to-date information on changing VOC regulations; roofing standards and regulations; and the emerging science of life cycle assessment and long-term service life measurement.

“We are proud of our ten-year track record of industry leadership at ERA,” said Ellen Thorp, associate executive director of ERA. “Our goal now is to build on those ten years of success and provide members of the building industry with a trusted, one-stop source of up-to-date information.”

Thomas W. Hutchinson, of AIA, RRC and FRCI, is principal of Hutchinson Design Group and a consultant to ERA. “Architects, engineers, building owners and roof system designers need to design roof systems appropriate for the building use, climate and contractor base. This means they have to look beyond the roof cover as a single-component solution, and instead focus on the provision of a high-performance system that can provide overall energy efficiency and withstand extreme weather conditions,” Hutchinson said.

“Our members — Firestone, Carlisle Syntec and Johns Manville — all make both reflective/white and dark-colored EPDM membranes,” Thorp said. “Our overriding goal is to provide information to the roofing industry that clarifies the appropriate use of our products. There is an EPDM roof for every climate, but not every single-ply product is appropriate for use in every climate without other considerations. It’s essential that we clearly differentiate the relative benefits of using white or black roofing.”

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