GreenSeal’s Cleaning Standard
GreenSeal recently announced GS-42, the new Environmental Standard for Cleaning Services for reduced toxicity, waste and exposure.
“This standard seeks to encourage both in-house and external cleaning services to establish a green cleaning program that protects human health and the environment,” says Arthur Weissman, Ph.D., Green Seal president and CEO.
For the purposes of this standard, green cleaning encompasses all indoor activities typically required to clean commercial, public and industrial buildings. And because it defines an environmentally responsible cleaning service, the standard could be used as the basis for verification as well as certification. GS-42 provides a market incentive for service providers to offer environmentally responsible cleaning services and a clear, reliable tool for purchasers to determine which products and services are environmentally responsible.
The standard specifies green chemicals, supplies and equipment, as well as cleaning procedures, and mandates employee training and communication with building owners and occupants. It also requires that a building-specific “green cleaning plan” be implemented. To verify compliance, Green Seal will conduct on-site audits.
To learn more, or to review the details of this new standard, visit Green Seal at www.greenseal.org.
Healthy Schools Campaign Promotes Green Cleaning
The Healthy Schools Campaign (HSC), an independent nonprofit, teams with industry leaders to unveil The Quick and Easy Guide to Green Cleaning in Schools.
This eight-page handbook outlines five steps for setting up a schools green cleaning program — switching to green cleaning products and equipment; adopting new cleaning procedures; introducing green paper and plastic products; and involving all school stakeholders in the process. An accompanying CD-ROM offers tips on purchasing and lists resources to help schools learn more and institutionalize their efforts.
With the support of industry leaders JohnsonDiversey, Ecolab and Unisource Worldwide, 10 manufacturers and distributors have provided the support needed to print and distribute 50,000 copies of the free guide to national educational associations, school authorities, district purchasing agents and school administrators. Other sponsors include ProTeam, SCA Paper, Andersen Company, PortionPac, Spartan Chemical Company Inc., SPEEDS-Microfiber Cleaning System and Wausau Paper.
To develop the Guide, HSC worked with author Stephen P. Ashkin, president and founder of The Ashkin Group, LLC.
“With several states looking at indoor air quality programs and New York State requiring green cleaning in both public and private schools, it is just a matter of time before green cleaning becomes the standard. Schools will need to have access to the information and products to comply,” says Ashkin.
To learn more about HSC or the Guide, visit www.greencleanschools.org.
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