I realize that “green cleaning” has to do with the entire cycle of cleaning which includes using post-consumer products, safer chemicals, different processes and training staff to perform work in such a way that there is minimal impact on the environment. The medical axiom: “Do no harm” comes to mind. I prefer “green friendly” since I am not quite ready to give up my gasoline powered automobile (although it has a catalytic converter) or flying on airplanes for distance travel or giving up a disinfectant that is definitely not green when it comes to killing pathogenic organisms that would love to kill me if given the chance.

I recognize the absolute importance of the front line custodian in not only providing the last line of defense against an ever growing army of contagions but also applaud their commitment to using best practices to protect the environment for future generations. A “clean” office area, shop, school, airport or other area populated by human beings is essential to productivity and the continuation of our society as we know it. In fact, history shows us over and over again the catastrophes generated by poor sanitation. The proliferation of rats (fleas), polluted sources of water and poor disposal of refuse resulted in millions dying during the Black Death in Europe where ignorance of cause and effect was rampant. We are only a few mistakes (ignorant budget cuts) away from such disasters happening again, at least on the local level.

When I think of lost productivity, I think of headaches, rashes, asthma, eye/nose/throat irritation, poor attention span, fevers, coughing, sores and transmission of diseases simply due to poor cleaning and poor hygiene. Most people have no real appreciation for the simple action of washing their hands correctly and/or avoiding cross contamination.

To me, green friendly cleaning is providing the safest environment possible with the least impact on the environment. Your comments and questions are always welcome. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…


Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678.314.2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.