Green Cleaning Program
The importance of cleaning. As a cleaning company, you realize how important it is to keep dust, dirt and grime out of a building. For your customers, a clean building means betterworking conditions for employees and, therefore, higher employee productivity. A clean building is also much more appealing to customers and clients. In addition, keeping a building cleanincreases the life span of carpets, flooring, furniture, and fixtures.
Green cleaning is much more than using a few chemicals that have been labeled as “green”. Green cleaning is defined as a system of cleaning that promotes healthy surroundings forworkers, students and building visitors, and is also less detrimental to the environment.
Why make the switch to green cleaning? People are becoming more concerned about the health of the environment, including the workplace environment. Awareness is alsogrowing about the importance of indoor air quality. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the level of indoor air pollutants can be 2 to 5 times higher, andoccasionally up to 100 times higher than outdoor levels.
How a facility is cleaned can be a major factor in the quality of indoor air. The economic impact of a “healthier” building is not measured in nickels and dimes but in billions of dollars. Astudy by the U.S. Department of Energy indicated that US businesses could have an ANNUAL productivity gain of $30 to $150 billion just by implementing cleaning techniques thatimprove indoor air quality.
In addition, cleaning employees experience high injury rates. Many of these injuries are caused by the toxic chemicals used in daily activities. Reducing the use of the most toxicchemicals by switching to greener products can reduce injury rates and increase employee morale.
Today there are less toxic and very effective products available for almost all cleaning applications. Green cleaning products are less toxic, have lower VOC’s (volatile organiccompounds), and most are biodegradable and free of heavy metals and carcinogens.
Green cleaning is not a fad and it’s not going away. A few years ago cleaning contractors resisted making the switch to green cleaning chemicals because the products didn’t work verywell and they were more expensive than conventional cleaning chemicals. But manufacturers today are spending
millions of dollars on research and development of green products that are as good as or better than conventional cleaning products.
Problems associated with poor indoor air quality:
• Poor indoor air quality can cause a variety of illnesses and can cause worker absences.
• Poor air quality can also cause acute health conditions and decrease worker and student performance.
• Poor indoor air quality can reduce a person’s ability to perform mental tasks that require concentration, memory skills or calculation.
• Poor indoor air quality consistently ranks among the top five environmental risks to public health.
Poor indoor air quality can lead to:
• Puffy, red, itchy, dry and irritated eyes.
• Ear aches and ear infections.
• Sore, dry and scratchy throat.
• Stuffy, runny, dry noses, or excessive sneezing.
• Chest congestion, coughing, wheezing or difficulty breathing.
• Dry skin or skin rashes.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the level of indoor air pollutants can be 2 to 5 times higher, and occasionally up to 100 times higher than outdoor levels.
Benefits of green cleaning:
• A healthier work environment for a building’s occupants and visitors.
• By using “greener” chemicals, you’ll cut down on the amount of hazardous chemicals used. This also helps to reduce the potential for spills, accidents and potential liabilityclaims that can occur when using more hazardous chemicals.
• Improved worker productivity due to fewer chemicals being used.
• Reduced liability on insurance claims.
• Potentially lower maintenance costs.
• Increased value and appearance of the building.
• Marketing benefits of having a green building. Building managers may be able to attract tenants who would prefer locating to a green building.