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Cleaning green provides environmental, health benefits

Cleaning products can contribute to indoor air quality problems as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) evaporate and are circulated through the building's ventilation system. Indoor air is often several times more contaminated than outdoor air, and allergic reactions to unhealthy environments account for more than 10 million work days missed by U.S. employees each year.

By replacing products that negatively affect indoor environmental quality, the health and productivity of all building occupants is improved.

"We use nontoxic, nonreactive chemicals that have a minimal effect on the environment," said Kurt Lester, partner of Servi-Tek. "Additionally, companies see more effective use of energy and less water consumption through our green cleaning processes."

Additionally, the company is doing everything it can to prepare and prevent the spread of the H1/N1 virus in the workplace. It follows CDC guidelines by using a disinfectant with an Influenza A and/or Avian Influenza A disinfectant claim. Since the virus can live on hard surfaces up to two hours, Servi-Tek recommends that its clients install stand-alone hand sanitizing stations at all building entrances.

"When we first brought Servi-Tek on board, no other janitorial vendor was really speaking of the benefits of the 'green' concept. They seemed knowledgeable on the subject and that was impressive. And now that the concept has paved the way, it's nice to know we already are taking the required steps," said Shannon Fauteux, senior property manager at Sentre Partners.

Because of the environmental and human health benefits associated with cleaning practices, the LEED for Existing Buildings (LEED-EB) rating system has incorporated credits that reward green cleaning. Green cleaning provides an excellent opportunity to enhance a building's longevity without expending large sums of money.

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