What makes a Green Building Green?
LEED is primarily concerned with the building construction. The Green Clean Institute is more concerned with the cleaning program. The construction is a huge one-time commitment that addresses energy use, building materials, ventilation, carpet, and furniture. Once done, a Green building can degrade from this pristine status to a not-so-green eco-system.
Ongoing issues of cleaning, pest control, and maintenance is the real measure of the healthy or Green building status. This is just common sense, really. A clean floor does not stay clean for long. A water-saving toilet does not stay odorless if neglected. Even the live plants do not care for themselves. The maintenance of the building is actually more important for a Green building once the construction is done.
Therefore, the Green Clean Institute has installed a pragmatic and useful method to improve, evaluate, and recognize the ongoing Green commitment via the cleaning program. The cleaning process is intimately connected to the building eco-health as it is applied every day or week. We add other advisory factors like pest control, cleaning products, and proper maintenance into the overall concept, but cleaning is by far the most influential part of the ongoing building status.
Therefore, any GCI Green Cleaning certified firms may apply for the "Green Cleaned Building" seals by completing a survey and a visual inspection done via Skype, Facetime, or similar mediums. We have a written set of Best Practices for Green Buildings that allow for a variety of point-related options. If there are enough points to warrant the GCI Green Cleaned seal, we will schedule a visual inspection of these claims and authorize the use of the seal on that building for a period of one year.
If any of you are worried about cost, the inspection and award are quite affordable ... about $100 per building per year. We simply expect honesty and follow through on your commitment to uphold the key standards of Green cleaning.