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Standards to Celebrate Earth Day!

4/23/2021

Until we find signs of life on Mars, we know we only have one Earth, and it’s our responsibility to care for her for the benefit of future generations. Therefore, an emphasis on sustainability allows us to meet our present day needs without compromising the ability to meet future needs. To celebrate Earth Day, ANSI takes a look at some of the standards that promote sustainability.

We all know the monetary cost of energy consumption in our buildings and often opt for energy efficient products when we can. But did you know that buildings can be constructed with sustainability in mind? The products used to build a building can be selected in a way that is earth-friendly. ASTM E2129-18, Standard Practice For Data Collection For Sustainability Assessment Of Building Products, was developed by ASTM International, a member and audited designator of ANSI. This practice covers a set of instructions for collecting data to be used in assessing the sustainability of building products for use in both commercial and residential buildings. ISO 15392:2019, Sustainability In Buildings And Civil Engineering Works - General Principles, is another standard related to sustainability in the construction of buildings. This standard identifies and establishes general principles for the contribution of buildings, civil engineering works, and other types of construction works (hereinafter referred to collectively as construction works) to sustainable development. It is based on the concept of sustainable development as it applies to the life cycle of construction works, from inception to the end-of-life. ISO 15392 was developed by ISO Technical Committee (TC) 59, Buildings and civil engineering works, Subcommittee (SC) 17, Sustainability in buildings and civil engineering. ASTM International administers the ANSI-accredited U.S. Technical Advisory Group (TAG) ISO TC 59, SC 17, which carries U.S. positions forward to the committee.

We all probably use our phones and computers every day without stopping to think where they come from. To most of us, our products simply arrive in a box, ready to use. However, before they arrive in our hands, they are made from a variety of raw materials, which are manufactured and then shipped from various locations. At any point in this supply chain, there are opportunities to incorporate sustainability into the process. IPC 1401-2017, Corporate Social Responsibility And Sustainability Protocols For Electronic Manufacturing Industry, specifies the requirements and guidance for a supply chain social responsibility management system that an enterprise can use to integrate social responsibility into the product life cycle. The standard can also be used to help manage social responsibility risks and opportunities through the implementation of sustainable procurement in a cascading approach, so as to enhance the competitive advantages of the enterprise and its supply chain. This standard was developed by IPC - Association Connecting Electronics Industries (IPC), an ANSI-accredited standards developer.

We also rarely think about the sustainability of medical devices because we’re too busy thinking about the life-saving qualities of medical devices. However, the more sustainable a medical device is, the more lives it has the potential to positively impact. AAMI TIR65:2015, Sustainability Of Medical Devices - Elements Of A Responsible Product Life Cycle, highlights sustainability considerations during the product design and manufacturing, acquisition and use, and end-of-life of medical devices, taking into account the life cycle impacts of the product. This standard was developed by the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI), an ANSI-accredited standards developer.

The time has never been better to celebrate all that the Earth has given us and continues to provide. As you go through your day looking for ways to be kinder to the Earth, know that standards are also helping preserve Earth’s resources for generations to come. From ANSI to you, we wish you a happy Earth Day!

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