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BIFMA To Revise Sustainability Standard with Support from Healthy Materials Expert

Thursday, September 10, 2015  
Posted by: Nicole Cook
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September 8, 2015

CONTACT: Nicole Cook
616-285-3963 ext. 19


BIFMA To Revise Sustainability Standard with Support from Healthy Materials Expert

Grand Rapids, Mich. – The Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association (BIFMA) is excited to announce the launch of a process to revise the ANSI/BIFMA e3 Furniture Sustainability Standard.

The standard has been very successful since it’s release in 2008 with more than 60 manufacturers certifying over 7,000 product lines through the level® third-party certification program for the furniture industry’s multi-attribute, sustainability standard. It was created to deliver the most open and transparent means of evaluating and communicating the environmental and social impacts of furniture products in the built environment.

The sustainability field and market has continued to evolve – LEED has changed, Health Product Declarations (HPDs) have been created and there is an increased focus on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA).  It is time for level® to evolve further.  The goals for the e3 revision are:
Enhanced clarity around support for green building rating systems

Updated chemistry assessment
Increasingly life cycle based

To expedite the development process, BIFMA has engaged Jennifer Atlee. Jennifer has been conducting research and analysis, writing, speaking and consulting on sustainability issues since 1999. Her work with the HPD Collaborative, Rich Earth Institute, BuildingGreen, MIT, Rocky Mountain Institute, Toxics Use Reduction Institute, and Demand Management Institute has addressed green building and healthy materials, commercial and industrial energy efficiency, closing the food-nutrient cycle, community-scale renewable energy, electronics recycling flows, and the economics of toxics use reduction.

“As BIFMA begins work on the next version of the ANSI/BIFMA e3 Furniture Sustainability Standard, we are excited to have a highly skilled and experienced resource like Jennifer join our effort,” stated Tom Reardon, BIFMA Executive Director. “Jennifer’s expertise and experience will help ensure the Standard remains meaningful, significant, and in step with what customers and sustainability experts expect from such a program.”

BIFMA plans to release the revision in 2016. To participate in the revision process, please let Kianda Franklin of NSF International ( know of your interest. Anyone can volunteer to be a work group participant or observer and everyone can participate in the meetings or conference calls that will occur over the course of the next year.




BIFMA is the not-for-profit trade association for business and institutional furniture manufacturers. Since 1973, BIFMA has been the voice of the commercial furniture industry.

Our industry’s service to our customers – providing healthy, comfortable, and productive workspaces – rests on an infrastructure of engineering and materials standards. These standards, founded on centuries of craft and enhanced by ever-advancing science, embody the best of our knowledge on safety, ergonomics, and sustainability.

At BIFMA, we sponsor the development and refining of standards, explain their importance and application, and translate their necessary complexity into more easily understood and implemented formats. We also monitor the state of the industry, serve as a forum for member cooperation and collaboration, interact with international counterparts, and advocate for regulatory conditions that foster value and innovation.