EPA launches modernized Design for the Environment logo for disinfectant and other antimicrobial products

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has launched a new, modern Design for the Environment (DfE) logo that will appear on antimicrobial products like disinfectants and sanitizers within the next year. EPA’s DfE logo helps consumers and commercial buyers identify antimicrobial products that meet the health and safety standards of the normal pesticide registration process required by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) as well as other rigorous criteria required by the agency

An image displays: On the left, the old DfE logo, featuring a globe; in the middle, a right-pointing arrow; and on the right, the new logo, featuring text, a web address, and an image.

“Protecting the health and safety of our families and our homes is central to EPA’s mission,” said Michal Freedhoff, Assistant Administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. “EPA is excited to take the DfE program to the next level with a bold, new logo to further empower consumers to make environmentally and health-conscious buying decisions.”

To further EPA’s mission of protecting human health and the environment, in 2009, the DfE program began including products that sanitize and disinfect, including wipes and sprays used to treat surfaces like countertops, tubs, tile, and toilets. To qualify for the DfE logo, every ingredient in a product must meet a rigorous set of chemical and toxicological standards.

EPA has seen a surge of engagement in the last few years from consumers, schools, and other organizations who want to know more about how the products they use affect their health and the environment—and who are eager to make the most responsible purchasing choices they can. The updated logo released today should make DfE-certified products easier for purchasers to find, which in turn will encourage companies to seek certification for their products.

Companies who make products carrying the DfE logo have invested heavily in research and reformulation to ensure that their products meet the DfE certification requirements. Pursuing DfE certification provides an opportunity for companies to work toward their sustainability goals.

DfE products meet criteria that evaluate human health and environmental effects, product performance, packaging, and ingredients. The requirements are intended to:

  • minimize any possible risks to human health by excluding ingredients that might have the potential to negatively impact young children, cause cancer, or have other negative effects;
  • further protect fish and other aquatic life;
  • minimize pollution of air or waterways and prevent harmful chemicals from being added to the land; and
  • ensure products have no unresolved compliance, enforcement, or efficacy issues.

EPA does not consider the logo to be an endorsement. Similar to saying a pesticide is “EPA-registered” because EPA has found it meets the registration standard, the DfE logo indicates that the product has been reviewed and meets the FIFRA registration standard as well as the standards for the DfE program.

To learn about the process for seeking DfE certification for antimicrobial products, see EPA’s website.

You told us you want safer products. Here’s what we’re doing about it.

Read the full story from the Washington State Department of Health.

Safer Products for Washington uses your feedback to help get harmful chemicals out of the stuff we all buy.

This company is capturing methane—then using it to make forks and straws

Read the full story at Fast Company.

On this week’s episode of World Changing Ideas, we explore the concept of methane removal, and speak to one company doing it, Newlight Technologies. Cofounder and CEO Mark Herrema walks us through how Newlight is not only removing methane from the atmosphere, but simultaneously generating an everyday product, called AirCarbon, with the potential to reduce plastic use.

PFAS water filter developed through NIEHS funding

Read the full story at Environmental Factor.

A new filter cartridge that is compatible with Brita pitchers can remove per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from drinking water. The Purefast cartridges from CycloPure, Inc., are based on DEXSORB+ technology, which was developed with support from an NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) small business innovation research grant.

GreenScreen Certified™ Standard for Food Service Ware

GreenScreen has released its standard for food service ware. The certification draws from the Center for Environmental Health’s extensive work testing single-use food ware for PFAS and builds on Clean Production Action’s GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals.

DOE proposes tougher light bulb efficiency standard, finalizes testing waiver rule

Read the full story at Utility Dive.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has proposed energy efficiency requirements for the most common types of light bulbs, which conservation advocates believe will save consumers $300 million each month on their energy bills.

The rule would codify a “backstop,” or minimum efficacy standard, of 45 lumens per watt (lm/W) for general service lamps. DOE’s notice of proposed rulemaking hints at a “staggered implementation” to ease the burden on manufacturers, leading the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) to question whether the Biden administration is moving rapidly enough to combat climate change.

DOE has also finalized a rule revising the agency’s appliance test procedure interim waiver process, which under former President Donald Trump was altered to allow greater flexibility for product manufacturers. Efficiency advocates say those changes allowed inefficient appliances to remain on shelves longer than necessary.

This new biodegradable glitter is made entirely from plants

Read the full story at Fast Company.

Almost all of the glitter you’ve ever used is still floating around the planet. This new formulation has just one ingredient, but it’s still as shimmery as the original.

Eco-Products earns GreenScreen certification for plant-based packaging with no PFAS added

Read the company news release.

Eco-Products® announced today that it has earned the coveted GreenScreen Certified™ Silver designation for its groundbreaking line of compostable plates and containers made from sugarcane.

Called Vanguard™, the award-winning line uses a proprietary chemistry to achieve grease resistance without the use of PFAS, a class of materials sometimes referred to as “forever chemicals.” In addition, GreenScreen Certified products do not contain other chemicals of high concern or known regrettable substitutes.

New chemical safety assessment tools developed to help the electronics sector clean up its supply chains

Read the full story at Environment + Energy Leader.

Last week, green chemical solutions advocate Clean Production Action unveiled GreenScreen Certified for Cleaners & Degreasers in Manufacturing, a tool to assess chemical safety in the industrial sector.

GreenScreen Certified™ for Cleaners & Degreasers in Manufacturing launched

Clean Production Action has released GreenScreen Certified,™ for Cleaners & Degreasers in Manufacturing to promote safer chemical use and innovation in the electronics sector and beyond.

Industrial cleaners and degreasers account for some of the highest use materials in the electronics sector and are under increasing scrutiny from regulators and environmental health and safety organizations. Clean Production Action developed the new certification with Apple, a leader in safer chemistry adoption, to create clear criteria for assessing the safety of cleaners used in the electronics industry and beyond. 

For years, Apple has used GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals to assess and promote safer chemicals in their supply chain and 100% of their supplier final assembly sites now utilize only approved safer cleaners. Today’s launch of GreenScreen Certified creates a path towards an industry-wide transformation by making information about safer alternatives readily available throughout the electronics industry.   

“These standards represent a new playbook to help companies everywhere use safer chemicals that are better for people’s health and for the planet,” said Kathleen Shaver, Apple’s director of environment and supply chain innovation. “We’re always innovating and glad to work with our partners to help drive the use of safer chemicals across industries.”

GreenScreen Certified™ for Cleaners & Degreasers in Manufacturing joins the family of GreenScreen certifications that are advancing safer chemicals in products. The criteria for GreenScreen certifications are freely and publicly available and build upon the well-established GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals benchmark scores. Certification requirements include full ingredient disclosure, compliance with a comprehensive list of prohibited substances including per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and testing to demonstrate the absence of priority restricted chemicals and chemical classes.

“Knowing which products are safer for workers in the electronics sector is a complicated task,” said Shari Franjevic, GreenScreen Program Manager. “GreenScreen Certified for Cleaners & Degreasers in Manufacturing now provides assurance that these products are third party certified and free of thousands of chemicals of high concern. We are very proud to supply another tool in the toolbox for safer chemistry innovation.”

For further information on the certification go to: https://www.greenscreenchemicals.org/certified/cleaners-degreasers-standard

Register for the webinar November 18, 2021 at 3:00 PM EDT: https://www.greenscreenchemicals.org/resources/entry/webinar-safer-cleaners-degreasers-for-electronics

About Clean Production Action

Clean Production Action is an independent, non-profit organization based in the United States. Our mission is to design and deliver strategic solutions for green chemicals, sustainable materials, and environmentally preferable products. Our core programs are: GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals, BizNGO, Chemical Footprint Project, and Investor Environmental Health Network.

About GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals

GreenScreen is a globally recognized tool designed to assess and benchmark chemicals based on hazard. Companies, governments, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) use GreenScreen benchmark scores to identify chemicals of concern to human health and the environment, select safer alternatives, and to track and communicate their progress. GreenScreen criteria and guidance are fully transparent and available for anyone to use.

About GreenScreen Certified™

Built upon GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals, GreenScreen Certified™ is an independent, non-profit certification that promotes the use of inherently safer chemicals in products and manufacturing.