GREEN SEAL® STANDARD DEVELOPMENT PROCESS
Our standards are science-based and developed with a life cycle approach. The development process is consensus-based, with an emphasis on engaging the stakeholder community.
- Select the Product Category
- Conduct Feasibility Assessment (Is there a need in the market for differentiation?)
- Develop Criteria (Product function, performance assessments, environmental and health impacts)
- Conduct outreach to Stakeholders
- Publish Draft Standard and technical documents for comment
- Public Comment Period
- Revise Standard
- Issue Standard and Public Supporting Technical Documents
STANDARD REVISION PROCESS
Green Seal reviews most standards every three to five years. In some cases, standards require updates in order to account for changes in the market and the commercialization of new technologies. Green Seal may also conduct more focused revisions to resolve minor issues in the standards. Examples include expanding the scope, updating lists of prohibited substances, resolving difficulties, or clarifying requirements. All revisions include a public comment period during which Green Seal solicits comments related only to the proposed changes.
See standards currently under revision here.
LIFE CYCLE APPROACH
Product and service categories are evaluated during the development of a standard to ensure that all significant functional, environmental, and health impacts are considered in all stages of the life-cycle, from raw material extraction and manufacturing to use and disposal.
STAKEHOLDER-INVOLVED, CONSENSUS-BASED PROCESS
All interested parties – individuals, companies, and nonprofit organizations – are able to register to review and comment on draft standards and technical documents during our public comment periods. In the case of a dispute, there is an appeals process for unresolved issues. Green Seal is always seeking feedback on our standards and this feedback will be considered during the review.
EXTERNAL REVIEW OF THE STANDARD DEVELOPMENT PROCESS
Green Seal’s standard development procedures have been reviewed by third parties and found to meet the guidelines of two standards of the International Organization for Standardization:
- ISO 14020: Environmental Labels and Declarations – General Principles
- ISO 14024: Environmental Labels and Declarations – Type I Environmental Labelling – Principles and Procedures
These two standards prescribe the goals, considerations, and procedures for voluntary (not regulatory) environmental labeling programs. Green Seal has demonstrated conformance to these standards.
Approximately every five years, the Global Ecolabelling Network conducts an onsite audit of Green Seal programs to ensure conformance with ISO 14020 and ISO 14024. We were successfully audited in September 2015.
Green Seal’s standard development procedures also meet the requirements for credible ecolabels from the following organizations: