The Importance of Green Cleaning
Often times, consumers think of green cleaning within the home, but it is just as important in office buildings, corporate complexes and any other work space. Think about it, for many people, they are at work as much, if not more than in their homes. Consumers want a clean, healthy environment in their homes so it makes sense to use clean, healthy, green practices in offices as well.
People live and breathe in their office, just like in their home, so it’s important to consider how these spaces are being cleaned and cared for, too. Choosing a green cleaning company and green maintenance is a key factor in keeping an office space environmentally sound. Many cleaning companies specialize in green cleaning these days, so if this a priority, make sure to find maintenance that will keep your office green.
Some measures at this level to ensure green practices are things like:
- Use a green custodial provider who uses safe, green products and practices for green building maintenance.
- Keep pollutants and chemicals out; for instance, have no smoking policies and safe ways to dispose of any chemical waste.
- Install efficient HVAC systems and keep them in good working order. This not only keeps the air cleaner but also saves on energy costs.
- Use green pest control. No one wants to see bugs running through buildings, but there are safer pest control services that are dedicated to using green products for controlling pests.
- Use green office cleaning services who make it a priority to use environmentally safe products and practices.
Beyond the Office
Commercial green cleaning is a huge factor in maintaining the standards of green office spaces, but it’s more far reaching than just office buildings. Green cleaning and maintenance is a smart choice anywhere, including schools and college campuses. Many college campuses, business complexes, and other buildings are taking on the challenge of keeping the buildings green and clean through cleaning and maintenance. For instance, Stanford University has won numerous awards for its green operations and management. A good cleaning company with green practices can help get your office to an award-winning green place.
The Benefits of Green Cleaning
People don’t always realize the harmful side effects in products that they may be using every day. In fact, many products that once lined the shelves are no longer produced because of the hazardous ingredients in them. Green office cleaning can keep environments healthy and clean without introducing harmful chemicals.
- Human and Animal Health – Using natural, green-cleaning products keeps harmful chemicals out of the environment. Think about it, when the bottle advises the consumer to use gloves or avoid inhaling the product, it may not be the most desirable thing to use. When it is hazardous to pets and children, is it what is best to spread in the environment? Many commercial cleaners can contain irritants and lead to some breathing problems or other health issues. With the use of green cleaners, consumers can avoid the use of dangerous chemicals.
- Environmental Health – Think about the cleaning products and their use. When people use products, much of it goes down the drain, and then where does it end up? Wouldn’t it be better to keep the products going into the environment safe, too? Using green cleaning products in the office will keep dangerous chemicals out of the environment as well as the buildings they are used in. The spread of chemicals is much more far reaching than many people think.
- Cost – Cleaning products are expensive. By using natural cleaners, the consumer can save some money. Many green products are regular household items that are inexpensive and easy to obtain, whether in home or office.
Green Cleaning Products
When a third party is cleaning an office, it’s important to ask about what products they are choosing to use. Feel free to ask and make sure the products meet the standards for the office as well as for green certification.
According to The Washington Post:
Look for a third-party certification. The two most popular certifications for cleaning products are EcoLogo, created by the Canadian government and now owned by the Illinois-based company UL, and the Washington-based nonprofit group Green Seal. If you have time to do a little pre-shopping research, another alternative is the EPA’s Greener Products guide, available on the agency’s Web site.
You can also do a little research to see what products suit the needs of your space and request that the cleaning company uses them, or just have some of these on hand for quick clean up. A lot of good, thorough lists exist for finding the right product for your needs, like this one on Real Simple.
Homemade Products- It’s also easy to put together some good cleaning products from a few household items and have these around the office for quick touch ups. Here are some of the most popular natural products to clean with and these can be kept in the office to have on hand if needed.
- Baking Soda – Baking soda is inexpensive and has many uses besides helping cakes rise. Pour it down the garbage disposal in the office kitchen to freshen the drains. Add lemons for a bright smell. It’s a good counter cleaner by using it on a sponge and then giving the surface a rinse.
- Vinegar – Mixing vinegar with baking soda transforms them both into a powerful, safe cleaner. Mix vinegar with water to make a safe, general cleaning solution.
- Lemons – Everyone loves the bright, fresh smell of lemons and they do a great job cleaning when mixed with baking soda. Use the juice of a lemon to make a baking soda paste great for cleaning sinks or dirty lunch dishes. Heat a little lemon water in the microwave and then wipe out the microwave. The steam from this mixture helps everything come right off and it will make the office smell good, too!
From home to office to college campuses and even beyond, using green cleaning products and practices can make a global difference. Make sure your cleaning company meets your green standards. These green practices can impact the health of not only people in the office but throughout the environment to create a positive global impact.