Ecolabels - Allison Friedman, Rate It Green

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Presentation delivered at MassRecycle's 4th Annual Green Office / Green Facility Conference, Bentley University, June 15, 2010. Get invited to next year’s conference by signing up to MassRecycle’s free email newsletter at www.massrecycle.org.

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Ecolabels - Allison Friedman, Rate It Green

  1. 1. An Introduction to Labeling and Certifications Allison Friedman Rate It Green [email_address] (617) 686-8977  <ul><ul><ul><li>Green Building Product and Service Directory </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Peer-Review Resource </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Community Portal </li></ul></ul></ul>Allison Friedman Founder, Rate It Green
  2. 2. Rate It Green ( www.rateitgreen.com ) Rate It Green further fuels green building industry growth by providing a vibrant, user-driven green building community and information resource. <ul><ul><ul><li>Green Building Product & Service Directory </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Peer-Review Resource </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Community Portal </li></ul></ul></ul>Core Elements: Top Goals: <ul><ul><ul><li>Build the largest green building product/service directory </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Create and lead the green building peer-review segment </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Lasting Impact on the green building market </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Peer-Review: </li></ul><ul><li>Helping people sift through what’s green, what works, who to trust (like labels!) </li></ul><ul><li>Critical market feedback </li></ul><ul><li>Building Community </li></ul>Peer-Review: National Fiber as an Example
  4. 4. Green Building 101 – Resource Guide <ul><li>A directory of over 900 green building industry information resources. The guide lists trade associations, resources, and tools as well as green building media, forums, resource centers, directories, guides, and more. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Topics: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Associations and Organizations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Green Building Resource Centers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Guides and Guidelines </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Federal and Other Resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Retailers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Design Tools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Educational & Training Resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Events </li></ul></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  5. 5. Green Building – Reducing Impact, Increasing Health <ul><li>Fewer Resources </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- Materials and Resources </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- Energy Efficiency </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- Water Efficiency </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>More-Natural or ”All Natural”* </li></ul><ul><li>Lower Toxicity - Indoor Air Quality </li></ul><ul><ul><li>- General Safety </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Keep in mind: </li></ul><ul><li>- All building has some impact. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- Defining all green building terms and values is NOT easy. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- Measuring greenness and quality is also NOT easy. </li></ul></ul></ul>Green Building means designing, constructing, operating, and maintaining buildings with concern for the environment, for the inhabitants of a building, and for the surrounding community.
  6. 6. Types of Information <ul><ul><ul><li>Labels and Certifications </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Laws and Regulations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Articles/Media </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Directories </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Peer-Review/Testimonials </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Experts </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>End Users </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Associations and Organizations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Trade Events </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Advertisements and Marketing Information </li></ul></ul></ul>
  7. 7. The Problem: Too Much Information = Too Little Information We’re not all scientists, and we can not evaluate each claim. Meanwhile, there is great market pressure on companies to make claims.
  8. 8. Who to Believe, and Why?
  9. 9. Definitions <ul><ul><ul><li>Labels </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Verification of a single claim/attribute </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Seal/reward for meeting multiple claims/attributes </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Promise/declaration of information provided on the label </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Certification </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Confirmation that information is true </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Verification that a specific standard has been met </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Often used for multiple attributes </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Standards </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Requirement that a certain certification be met </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Issued by: </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Government Agencies </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Industry Associations </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Independent Organizations </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Types of Labels and Certifications <ul><ul><ul><li>Certifier Relationship </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>First-Party: Claim made by the manufacturer or service provider </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Second-Party: Claim made by an interested or partner entity </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Third-Party: Independent verification, no vested interest </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Type of Label/Representation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Single Attribute </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Multiple Attribute </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Detailed information on the label itself </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Types of Processes <ul><ul><ul><li>Voluntary Consensus </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Formal, open process </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Transparent </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Proprietary </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Companies or organizations working together </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Not generally transparent </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Regulatory Specifications </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Promulgated by a government agency </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>De Facto </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Common Industry Practice </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>“ Everyone knows” </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Note: Level of Public and Outside Expert Involvement Varies </li></ul></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Selected Top Product Certifications Third-Party, Consensus-Based, Transparent <ul><li>GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (GEI) </li></ul><ul><li>Cool Roof Rating Council (CRRC) </li></ul><ul><li>EcoLogo </li></ul><ul><li>Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) </li></ul><ul><li>Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) </li></ul><ul><li>Green Seal </li></ul><ul><li>National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) </li></ul><ul><li>WaterSense (EPA) </li></ul><ul><li>SMaRT Consensus Sustainable Product Standards </li></ul>
  13. 13. GREENGUARD Environmental Institute <ul><li>Nonprofit, Founded in 2001 </li></ul><ul><li>ANSI Accredited Standards Developer </li></ul><ul><li>Mission: To protect human health and quality of life through </li></ul><ul><li>programs that reduce chemical exposure and improve </li></ul><ul><li>indoor air quality. </li></ul><ul><li>Certifications </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Building materials </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interior furnishings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cleaners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Electronics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Children’s products  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mold, moisture and indoor pollutants </li></ul></ul>

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