In order for buildings to earn the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED for Existing Buildings Operation and Maintenance certification, facility managers will need to implement a green cleaning program.

The green cleaning prerequisite requires the use of green-certified products and equipment, including general-purpose, floor and carpet chemicals, paper products, vacuums and carpet extractors.

In addition, cleaning providers are responsible for promoting and improving hand hygiene with soaps and hand sanitizers; safely storing, handling and disposing chemicals; and developing plans for reacting to hazardous spills. Hard floor and carpet cleaning must also be done with vulnerable building occupants in mind.