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The Green Guide EcoLibrary™: October 2008

Oct. 1, 2008

New and Updated - October 2008. Developed by The Green Standard

Certification programs and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) both provide a valuable approach to evaluating the environmental performance of products. However, a combination of the two provides even deeper insight and credibility. The following matrix identifies various certification programs currently in use by architects and designers and provides an evaluation of eacha, with the inclusion of a life-cycle approach, and with LCA as a part of the certification program.

Matrix of Product Certification Programs selected by The Green Standard to serve as entry point for posting in the Green Guide EcoList. Developers of some programs have been notified that they must strengthen features covered by December 2008 or be dropped from the list.

Certification
Program

Scope of CertificationTransparency
signifies meeting the criteria
signifies meeting the criteriaSingular Focus
(recycled content, sustainable forestry, etc.)
Multiple Attribute Focus
(combines more than one focus area)
Life Cycle Focus
(criteria spans a cradle-to-grave concept) 

Publicly Available Assessment Methods and Performance Thresholds

Publicly Available Summary of Results

Multi-Stakeholder Development Process

Public Standards Appeals Process

C2C
McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry
EcoLogo
Government of Canada
Energy Star
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Floor Score
Scientific Certification Systems
FSC Certified
Forest Stewardship Council
GREENGUARD Air Quality Certification
GREENGUARD Environmental Institute
Green Label Plus
Carpet & Rug Institute
Green Seal
Green Seal Organization
Indoor Advantage
Scientific Certification Systems
Smart Sustainable Product Standard
Market Transformation to Sustainability
Sustainable Choice
Scientific Certification Systems
SFI Certified
Sustainable Forestry Initiative
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Matrix of Product Certification Programs selected by The Green Standard to serve as entry point for posting in the Green Guide EcoList. Developers of some programs have been notified that they must strengthen features covered by December 2008 or be dropped from the list.
Life Cycle Certification

Certification
Program

signifies meeting the criteriaCriteria for Raw Material SourcingCriteria for Manufacturing OperationsCriteria for Product Use PhaseCriteria for End-of-Life ManagementComprehensive Criteria Set for Each Life Cycle StageCriteria for ISO-Compliant Full Product Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)Criteria for Reductions in Life Cycle ImpactsRequires the Use of LCA for Certification Requires Independent Verification of LCA Data

C2C
McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry

EcoLogo
Government of Canada

b
b
b
bEnergy Star
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Floor Score
Scientific Certification Systems

FSC Certified
Forest Stewardship Council

GREENGUARD Air Quality Certification
GREENGUARD Environmental Institute

Green Label Plus
Carpet & Rug Institute

Green Seal
Green Seal Organization

b
b
b
b

Indoor Advantage
Scientific Certification Systems

Smart Sustainable Product Standard
Market Transformation to Sustainability
c

Sustainable Choice
Scientific Certification Systems

c

SFI Certified
Sustainable Forestry Initiative

NOTES: 

  1. Based on information publicly available on the program's Web site.
  2. Since program contains mulitple product categories with different criteria, the authors cannot guarantee that these criteria apply to each category directly. In principle, the program addresses these.
  3. Only requires the use of LCA to reach the highest level of certification: Platinum.

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