Green cleaning ‘crucial’ to green building management

March 20th, 2013 Category: Building Management

There has been a lot of attention on green building management of late, indeed, our very own 10 Downing Street has recently picked up an accolade for transforming the historic building into an environmentally sustainable one. However, one thing that can be easily overlooked in the management of green buildings is the cleaning practices, but they are just as crucial as any other element.

Environmentally sustainable cleaning eliminates the harsh aspects of routine building management and replaces them with practices that are more suited to the friendly treatment of our environment. Many cleaning products currently used in and around our buildings can contain harsh chemicals that are toxic and unhealthy both for people and the environment, and there has been several changes of late to certain products to ensure that this is no longer the case.

A prime example of how these practices can be carried out is on show at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Australia. The educational establishment has an entire sustainability department which has implemented ‘green cleaning’ rules. They require that facility cleaners use only equipment, chemicals, and cleaning methods that have the lowest impact on the environment.

Cleaners at UNSW must adhere to green cleaning practices to achieve five primary outcomes. First of all, it ensures that hazardous and toxic chemicals are moved from the workplace, as well as reducing water wastage and consumption of materials and energy. Green cleaning leads to an improvement in reusing, reducing and recycling of packaging and better indoor air quality and cleanliness. Finally, the building occupants and cleaning staff will be safer under these conditions, which could very well be a reason enough for most building managers.