NSF Withdraws from GEI-NSF ANSI Health-Based Product Emissions Standard Development Process; GREENGUARD Forges Ahead

Feb 16, 2011, 18:41 ET from GREENGUARD Environmental Institute

GREENGUARD Moves Forward with ANSI Standard Development Activities

ATLANTA, Feb. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The GREENGUARD Environmental Institute announces today the unexpected withdrawal of NSF International from the joint development of GEI/NSF 112 - Volatile Organic Emissions from Building Products and Interior Furnishing Products, a comprehensive health-based ANSI standard.

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"We are disappointed by NSF's decision to withdraw from this standard development process and do not wish, in any way, to end our relationship with them," says Brian Englert, Ph.D., manager of science and standards at the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute. "We value NSF's standard development expertise and feel that, combined with GREENGUARD's unparalleled product emissions expertise, the resultant health-based product emissions standard would have been a great boon to healthier indoor environments."

The GREENGUARD Environmental Institute received written notice of NSF's withdrawal from these joint standard development activities on February 11, 2011—nine months into the two organizations' partnership. NSF indicated that its decision was based largely on UL Environment's recent acquisition of GREENGUARD.

GREENGUARD filed the original BSR/GEI Health-Based Product Emissions Performance Standard PINS on December 5, 2008. Within 30 days of the publication of the PINS announcement, NSF did not submit written comments (as required by ANSI) suggesting any duplication of, or conflict with, any existing ANSI standard. Therefore, GREENGUARD will proceed with the standard development per the PINS originally published in 2008.

GREENGUARD has informed NSF of its decision to move forward with this important ANSI standard development process, and has invited NSF to continue participating as a stakeholder.

"We look forward to continuing our work with the same joint committee to keep the momentum going," says Englert. "Their input is extremely valuable to us and, with their help, we are confident that we can fill a market need with a game-changing health-based product emissions performance standard."

Once finalized, the BSR/GEI Health-Based Product Emissions Performance Standard will streamline the myriad methods currently used for measuring and limiting chemical emissions from products, and will incorporate the most recent science on human health and toxicology to provide acute and chronic chemical exposure limits.  It will serve as a valuable tool for sustainability programs; federal, state, and local governments; code officials; architects and designers; health professionals; specifying professionals; and consumers by helping them choose products that minimize air pollutants in indoor environments.

The standard will be developed under the American National Standard Institute's (ANSI) Essential Requirements for adoption as an ANSI Standard. The ANSI Standard development process ensures that the standard is developed in a balanced, open, and collaborative manner with participation by multiple stakeholders to avoid potential conflicts of interest.  A consensus committee made up of government and public health officials, academics, industry leaders, and product users helps develop and vote on the standard, while a group of subject matter experts provides insight and guidance.  Subsequent mandatory public comment periods allow individual stakeholders and organizations to participate in the development process, too.  

About GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (GEI)

The GREENGUARD Environmental Institute aims to protect human health and improve quality of life by enhancing indoor air quality and reducing people's exposure to chemicals and other pollutants.  As an ISO-IEC Guide 65:1996 accredited, third-party organization, the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute certifies products and materials for low chemical emissions and provides a resource for choosing healthier products and materials for indoor environments.  All certified products must meet stringent chemical emissions standards based on established criteria from key public health agencies. GREENGUARD Certification is broadly recognized and accepted by sustainable building programs and building codes worldwide.  For more information and a complete listing of certified products, visit www.greenguard.org.

SOURCE GREENGUARD Environmental Institute