As the green marketplace grows, so does the number of products and services that are offered to consumers. And today just about every industry sector you can think of has developed a set of criteria that address environmental and social standards and are administered by a third party. Once the threshold is met the applicant receives the administrator’s stamp of approval. Until recently, consumers had only a few “stamps” to rely on when it came to green products and services. Not anymore. The number is growing daily. In fact, Global Green announced yesterday that they are launching a green hospitality certification program. With all these labels how does the consumer know what it means and whose behind it? Who is Global Green and what are their criteria? Now there’s a tool that can help you better understand and investigate green certifications and labels – ecolabelling.org.
Buildingctgreen.com’s friends at Big Room, Inc. in Vancouver have developed an on-line tool that anyone can use to investigate just about any label or certification program that is administered around the world. The site will be officially launched next week but Big Room gave me a sneak preview and I found it to be very robust, easy to navigate and a good resource. The site screens over 270 of the world’s green labels linked to organic food, retail goods, building products and more. The mission of the site is to streamline green purchasing and cut out consumer confusion around green labeling.
“We said, ‘look, let’s not reinvent the wheel here. Instead, let’s make it easier to understand and find ecolabels’,” says Anastasia O’Rourke a partner at Big Room and grad student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. “Companies thinking about gaining a green certification can use Ecolabelling.org to quickly locate and assess relevant labels. Big Room expects the site to be useful to procurers with green purchasing policies, who often need standards and criteria on which to base their decisions.”
According to Big Room, an estimated 410 green labels or green certification systems exist worldwide, while close to 400,000 companies and nearly 500,000 products have gained a green label or valid certification.
Go check it out, Ecolabelling.org, make a comment and we’ll pass it onto Big Room. I’m sure they’ll appreciate it.