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New Partnership Creates Awareness of Building Products

December 05, 2013

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and Underwriter Laboratories (UL), have announced a partnership centered on building product transparency and occupant health and safety. The partnership will roll out several initiatives focused on increasing disclosure, awareness and transparency of building product composition and the manufacturing processes.

The first initiative of the partnership is the creation of a joint Environmental Product Declaration (EPD). EPDs are a standardized way of quantifying the environmental impact of a product or system.

“UL is the foremost established leader in the EPD field and is uniquely positioned to provide third-party assurance for the LEED green building program," said Rick Fedrizzi, USGBC president, CEO & founding chair. "We are thrilled to engage in this partnership, which we believe will make a great impact across the market, both for manufacturers that want to establish themselves as leaders in the marketplace and for consumers who are increasingly demanding transparency in what is being used to construct and maintain the places where they live, learn, work and play.”

"Buyers are demanding to know the full extent of a product’s environmental and health impacts,” said Sara Greenstein, president of UL's Environment and Information and Insights Business Unit. “Transparency into the impacts of a product at each stage of its lifecycle has become a critical driver of purchases and specifications. Since this market is still evolving and because the quality and consistency of data can vary greatly, we are working diligently to ensure that buyers and LEED users can trust that the information on which they rely is accurate and that it complies with the new credit requirements. This partnership between USGBC and UL will help businesses, individuals and project teams better understand the products they are including in their building projects and have greater clarity about how those products can contribute to LEED credits.”
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