Al Hodgson, ClearChem Program Manager, 510-236-2325, email
As a company that manufactures building products, you likely receive numerous customer requests for documentation that your products conform to various environmental standards and criteria. Responding to requests related to “green” procurement can be tedious and time consuming. The questions often are posed in different formats and can be vague, incomplete or inaccurate.
To address this situation, many manufacturers participate in third-party, eco-labeling programs. Eco-labeling programs can be a convenient way to communicate environmental product attributes to the purchasing community. However, eco-labeling programs can be expensive and may have other drawbacks. Eco-label programs often employ different environmental criteria in an effort to compete, which creates undesirable confusion in the marketplace. And, details of how eco labels assess conformity frequently are hidden from scrutiny, which is contrary to increasing consumer demand for transparency with respect to the environmental performance of products.
The ClearChem™ program offers companies a practical alternative by leveling the playing field and removing some of the uncertainties associated with existing eco-labeling programs. ClearChem is a fully transparent program in which companies self-declare compliance of their products against criteria that are defined in well-recognized standards. ClearChem currently supports product claims for CDPH Standard Method V1.2 and the preceding V1.1. The ClearChem Self Declaration is designed to provide the information needed for USGBC LEED v4 EQ Credit: Low Emitting Materials, other voluntary standards, and green building codes. Thus, a company’s certificate of conformity created using the ClearChem format provides architects and purchasing organizations with complete information in a standardized, easy to interpret format.
Participation in ClearChem is available to companies that test their products with Berkeley Analytical. Before use of the ClearChem Self Declaration, a company must enter into an implementation agreement with Berkeley Analytical in which they agree to follow the procedures and requirements in ClearChem Standard BkA-CC-01. Each participating company receives their own web page highlighting their environmental stewardship program and providing downloadable certificates of conformity for their individual products. These certificates are created by the company using a convenient on-line form. Certificates are posted in the ClearChem directory for a period of two years from the date of the underlying laboratory test.