If you are like everyone else in this recession, you are taking a hard look at every operating expense. If you own, operate or work in a LEED certified building, you are probably evaluating every expense and weighing the environmental impact of those expenses. Hey, that is the responsible way to operate.Have no fear. The Green Cleaning Pollution Prevention Calculator was developed with you in mind. When the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) created this tool, environmental, health and safety managers finally had a quantitative mean to evaluate the benefits of implementing green cleaning practices. The calculator is used by the federal government to assist in the development of performance-based janitorial contracts.Used correctly, this green cleaning calculator can help reduce the health and environmental hazards that have infected buildings in the past. Building owners and managers must input certain criteria:
- Square footage estimate of the carpeted area in the building
- Square footage estimate of the hard surface flooring in the building
- List the types and annual usage estimates for cleaning products currently used in the building
- Describe the handling and mixing practices for current cleaning products used in the building
- List changes to janitorial products and practices that have either been recently made or will be made
Combining this basic information with certain other, more specific cleaning criteria will allow the building manager a very telling assessment of the current system as well as the environmental benefits of a projected cleaning program.Property managers are finding the use of the Green Cleaning Calculator will help set proper use limits. This information is helpful to the budget minded and to managers who understand that over-use is not a desirable outcome. Anyone interested in more information should feel free to visit the EPA’s Green Cleaning web site or contact a local chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).