By Abigail Sandra Delia. Kitchen Countertops. Published at Thursday, March 01st, 2018 - 13:34:56 PM.
The basics: Recycled paper countertops are composed of postconsumer wastepaper, nonpetroleum-based resins and pigments. This mix is heated and compressed into a dense, monolithic slab with a feel that’s often compared to a warm, soft stone — like soapstone. The primary manufacturers, PaperStone, Richlite, ShetkaStone and Kliptech, all offer several colors, though the material typically is available only in medium to dark hues, all in a smart-looking matte finish.
Disadvantages: The material is heat resistant only to 350 degrees, so — as with many kitchen surfaces — it’s best to keep trivets nearby. The color palettes tend toward medium to dark hues, though Kliptech (the maker of RecycleTop) has solved that in its similar recycled paper and bamboo product, EcoTop, which comes in lighter colors, including Snow White.
Advantages: Low cost and a myriad of choices are the boon here. Laminates come in a staggering array of colors, patterns and finishes: from eggplant to amber, maple to marble and high gloss to grained.
Concrete counters can be a terrific green choice if they are sourced locally or cast in place (transporting heavy slabs great distances consumes a lot of energy). Also, look for low-impact aggregates, such as increased coal fly ash, and recycled glass or paper.
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