UL Environment Acquires AQS and its GREENGUARD Environmental Institute
February 8, 2011
Since 2001 the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute’s certification program has served as an assurance that many different materials, including glass and doors, are certified for low chemical emissions. Now, UL Environment, a business unit of Underwriters Laboratories, has reached an agreement with Air Quality Sciences Inc. (AQS) to acquire it and its certifying body, the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute.
Dr. Marilyn Black, GREENGUARD's founder, told USGNN.com™ that companies already participating in the program will be able to continue to do so under the same guidelines.
"GREENGUARD will continue to provide indoor air quality certification, and manufacturers that are currently participating in the GREENGUARD Certification Program will be able to continue participating as they always have under the same guidelines,” says Black. “Our leadership standards and well-known certification marks will remain the same--and our brand will continue to stand for the most stringent standards backed by sound science and transparency for the protection of human health. The partnership with UL Environment will help us strengthen our message to the market and provide opportunities to further define sustainable product attributes."
“This acquisition combines AQS’s world-class technology and expertise, as well as GREENGUARD’s brand recognition and scientific rigor, with UL’s trusted history of standards development, testing and compliance to create a more comprehensive solution for testing and certification,” says Steve Wenc, president of UL Environment. “Together, we’ll help consumers, regulators, and other interested parties make informed product purchases by providing clarity around indoor air quality claims.”
Representatives from some companies in the fenestration industry agree that participating in programs such as GREENGUARD is important.
“I do think that independent validation and certification of specific product performance claims is critical to the sustainability of the green movement. I still see companies making unsubstantiated--and wholly unrealistic--claims for the performance of their products,” says Daniel Depta, manager of marketing for Special-Lite Inc., which has had several of its architectural, glazed door products GREENGUARD certified. “Independent laboratory testing and third-party certification of product performance attributes are the best way to combat such greenwashing.”