Tag Archives: Certifications

What you should know before calling your project “LEED Certifiable”

There seems to be an increasing number of green building projects that are adopting the design and construction principles of the U.S. Green Building Council’s® LEED® green building program while opting to forgo pursuing actual certification.  From a purely environmental perspective, this is great news.  More buildings are being designed and built to have a reduced negative impact on the natural environment.  From a marketing standpoint, these project teams could be shooting themselves in the foot, or worse, violating trademark and branding policies set forth by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). USGBC has clear and explicit guidelines for using the LEED acronym and the accompanying logos.  USGBC’s Trademark Policy and Branding Guidelines outline just how to word references to LEED registered and certified projects, sizing and color specifications for logo use, and proper acknowledgment of trademark ownership and permissions.  The violation that appears to be most common, however, is not related to projects that have achieved or hope to achieve LEED certification.  Many projects are being referred to as LEED Certifiable, LEED Compliant, LEED Qualified, LEED Equivalent, or some variation that attempts to indicate that the building was designed and constructed in accordance to the LEED green building program  Continue Reading »

The Bluesign Standard

Written by Owain Jones, MBA in Sustainability student at University of Saint Francis Since sustainability initiatives are beginning to become very common, almost all industries are trying to figure how or what they can do. With this comes the rise in other businesses designed to help those attain their sustainability goals and New Leaf is one of them. It is a great opportunity for businesses to be able to have access to experts who they would otherwise have to hire or train, which can prove to be time consuming and more expensive than consulting firms. However, there has been an increase in large companies specifically hiring sustainability personnel because they feel it is worth their while and sustainability is not just a fad, it is important and here to stay. But when a company needs to dramatically overhaul their product line to become more sustainable, an outside organization can prove to be an easy route. For the textile industry, Bluesign is just that organization. A Swiss scientist, Dr. Peter Waeber, began to develop sustainable products in the 1980s, with a project for the World Wildlife Federation (WWF) to create a “green” cotton. Throughout the development of this and the introduction of sustainable dyes, finally  Continue Reading »

Giving Your Green Message Credibility: Part 2

Part 2:  Eco-Labels Eco-labels are an important part of green marketing.  When misused, they can also be a magnet for greenwashing, so it is important to understand what eco-labels are and how they should be applied. Eco-labeling is a method of informing consumers of the environmental performance of products.  They indicate a third party verification of the brand’s claims and consider the environmental attributes and  impacts of products and services. Eco-labels are a subset of Environmental Labels as categorized by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).  “The ISO 14020 series of standards addresses a range of different approaches to environmental labels and declarations, including eco-labels (seals of approval), self-declared environmental claims, and quantified environmental information about products and services.”   The three types of environmental labels as identified by ISO are:     Type I and Type III require third party verification or certification of your products.  This is the best way to avoid the greenwashing sins of Worshipping False Labels and No Proof, as discussed in Part 1 of this blog series.  When a third party gives your product or service the stamp of approval, your customers know that your claims have been reviewed and found to be accurate by someone  Continue Reading »