GO Lab, Inc., a building products manufacturer in Belfast, closed on its purchase of the former Madison Paper Industries mill, along the Kennebec River in Madison.
The company said Aug. 22 it will make three wood fiber insulation products at the facility: EM Board, EM Batt and EM Pack, all under the brand name Timber Pure Technologies.
GO Lab has been working for months with its engineering and construction partners on plans to retrofit the mill, install a line of manufacturing equipment purchased from Germany and begin production at the facility in the second half of next year.
“With closing on the mill and having a concrete location, people can see that this project is actually happening,” said Josh Henry, GO Lab’s president, in a news release. “It allows us to focus, specifically, on how the equipment we purchased from Germany will operate in that space. It’s a major step forward.”
Once fully operational, a local workforce of more than 100 employees will process more than 200,000 tons of softwood chips at the facility, annually, the release said.
Wood fiber insulation has been a product in Europe for more than 20 years.
By becoming the first company to produce and sell it in the U.S., GO Lab will be introducing a renewable, recyclable, non-toxic insulation that performs better and costs the same or less than the other, less environmentally friendly products that dominate the construction insulation market, the release said.
Worldwide, buildings account for 44% of global CO2 emissions, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the release said.
The names of GO Lab’s new subsidiary, Timber Pure Technologies, refer to the company’s commitment to giving its future customers affordable, superior insulation products that also contribute to the fight against climate change.
“The ‘EM’ part of the product name refers to embodied carbon, embodied energy,” said Henry. “These products require little energy to manufacture. When you cut down a tree and it’s turned into a manufactured product, that is a carbon sink for the future. As long as those products are in place, that carbon is not being released into the atmosphere.”
Timber Pure Technologies (TPT) first product will be EM Pack, a blown in, wood fiber insulation. The company plans to begin producing EM Pack for the commercial market in second half of 2020.
GO Lab, Inc. is a privately held, Maine-based building products corporation founded in 2017 to develop and manufacture innovative, environmentally responsible, wood fiber insulation for the residential and light commercial construction market. GO Lab is a spin-off of OPAL Architecture and design-build firm GO which, has been instrumental in bringing Passive House—an ultra-energy-efficient building design approach—to the U.S.