Los Angeles, CA – The Ashkin Group-headed by Stephen Ashkin, long known as the “father of Green Cleaning” and the industry’s leading advocate for sustainability-was one of 24 organizations honored to receive the U.S. EPA’s Safer Choice Partner of the Year Award.
The Safer Choice Partner of the Year Awards recognizes programs, organizations, and individuals that support and help advance the goals of chemical safety. 2016 marks the second year of this annual event.
In order to be honored with this award, program participants must submit an application and are then evaluated against the following five criteria:
- Participation in the Safer Choice Program
- Use of the Safer Choice label
- Promotion and use of products using the Safer Choice label
- Outreach and education on the Safer Choice Program to consumers and end users
- Innovations in safer chemistry and other efforts to advance the Safer Choice Program
Along with The Ashkin Group, other noteworthy and jansan-related organizations honored this year include the following: * ISSA (the worldwide cleaning association) * Healthy Schools Campaign * BISSELL * The Clorox Company * Ecolab
“It was an honor to receive the award, and I appreciated the opportunity to meet EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy,” says Stephen Ashkin. “And my congratulations to all the other award winners from our industry.”
Ashkin adds that he would like to see more jansan organizations get involved with the Safer Choice Program.
“So many jansan manufacturers and organizations have already made a tremendous commitment to the health and safety of cleaning workers, building users, and the planet that I am sure they can be considered for the program and honored with this award in future years.”
To be considered for the award, organizations must first fill out an application with the EPA which can be found here.
About Stephen Ashkin and The Ashkin Group Stephen P. Ashkin is president of The Ashkin Group, a consulting firm specializing in Greening the cleaning industry, and CEO of Sustainability Dashboard Tools, which helps facilities monitor and measure their use of natural resources. He is known as the “father of Green Cleaning” and the professional cleaning industries leading advocate for sustainability. He is also coauthor of both The Business of Green Cleaning and Green Cleaning for Dummies
ISSA kicked off Earth Day, Friday, April 22, 2016, by signing agreements with Energy Star and SmartWay, two U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) programs.
As an Energy Star Partner, ISSA will encourage its members to:
- Measure and track the energy performance of their facilities where possible by using tools such as those offered through Energy Star
- Develop and implement plans consistent with the Energy Star Energy Management Guidelines to achieve energy savings
- Promote the importance of energy efficiency to their staff and communities.
Thanks to a similar but separate agreement, ISSA is also now a SmartWay Affiliate. As such, ISSA will educate its members about how SmartWay can help them reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution associated with freight transport and overall transportation functions by improving efficiency, streamlining freight supply chain operations, and achieving economic and environmental savings in the process.
“ISSA’s new connections with Energy Star and SmartWay offer members many opportunities to develop more sustainable and environmentally conscious practices and systems,” says ISSA Executive Director John Barrett. “These partnerships will also be good for members from a financial point; cutting energy consumption saves money, and today, many customers are eager to do business with companies that are socially responsible.”
Steve Ashkin, president of The Ashkin Group and founder of the Green Cleaning Network, was a driving force behind the partnership and agrees with Barrett. “Based on what we’re learned from EPA’s Energy Star, SmartWay Transport, and other programs, ISSA’s distributor members can save US$42 million annually on energy, fuel, and other operating expenses,” he says. “Plus, from an environmental perspective, these savings equate to removing 34,000 cars from the road or planting 4 million trees. This program truly is a win for ISSA members and a win for the future.”
EPA Press Release
The Ashkin Group is recognized as an outstanding Safer Choice Supporter for 2016.
The Ashkin Group is a consulting firm working to green the cleaning industry. The organization has offered input that has helped to enhance the Safer Choice program and encourage ingredient disclosure on product labeling.
Safer Choice commends The Ashkin Group for its strong communication efforts to advance safer cleaning and worker health and its long-time support of the Safer Choice program.
Of note, Safer Choice applauds The Ashkin Group’s promotion of the program in the Playbook on Green Cleaning in Sport Facilities, LEED certification, and in Version 1.0 of the Guidance for Leadership in Sustainable Purchasing document.