The GreenGuard Environmental Institute has announced the unexpected withdrawal of NSF International from the joint development of GEI/NSF 112 - Volatile Organic Emissions from Building Products and Interior Furnishing Products, a comprehensive health-based ANSI standard.

“We are disappointed by NSF’s decision to withdraw from this standard development process and do not wish, in any way, to end our relationship with them,” said Brian Englert, Ph.D., manager of science and standards at the GreenGuard Environmental Institute. “We value NSF’s standard development expertise and feel that, combined with GreenGuard’s unparalleled product emissions expertise, the resultant health-based product emissions standard would have been a great boon to healthier indoor environments.”

The GreenGuard Environmental Institute received written notice of NSF’s withdrawal from these joint standard development activities on Feb. 11, 2011, nine months into the two organizations’ partnership. NSF indicated that its decision was based largely on UL Environment’s recent acquisition of GreenGuard.

GreenGuard said it will proceed with the standard development, per the original BSR/GEI Health-Based Product Emissions Performance Standard PINS filed on Dec. 5, 2008. GreenGuard has informed NSF of its decision to move forward with this important ANSI standard development process, and has invited NSF to continue participating as a stakeholder.

“We look forward to continuing our work with the same joint committee to keep the momentum going,” says Englert. “Their input is extremely valuable to us and, with their help, we are confident that we can fill a market need with a game-changing health-based product emissions performance standard.”

Once finalized, the BSR/GEI Health-Based Product Emissions Performance Standard will streamline the myriad methods currently used for measuring and limiting chemical emissions from products, and will incorporate the most recent science on human health and toxicology to provide acute and chronic chemical exposure limits. It will serve as a valuable tool for sustainability programs; federal, state, and local governments; code officials; architects and designers; health professionals; specifying professionals; and consumers by helping them choose products that minimize air pollutants in indoor environments, according to GreenGuard.

The standard will be developed under the American National Standard Institute’s (ANSI) Essential Requirements for adoption as an ANSI Standard, ensuring that the standard is developed in a balanced, open, and collaborative manner with participation by multiple stakeholders to avoid potential conflicts of interest. A consensus committee made up of government and public health officials, academics, industry leaders, and product users helps develop and vote on the standard, while a group of subject matter experts provides insight and guidance. Subsequent mandatory public comment periods allow individual stakeholders and organizations to participate in the development process.