AHAM Teams with CSA Standards, UL Environment

The Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) has partnered with CSA Standards and UL Environment to jointly develop voluntary sustainability standards for home appliances.

The new standards will take a lifecycle approach and are intended to be used by governments, retailers, and other initiatives to identify environmentally responsible products.

This effort is intended to provide an objective and practical measurement tool to assist the public in evaluating the sustainability of home appliances. “Manufacturers are committed to providing this solution to their customers,” explained Joseph M. McGuire, president of AHAM. “This partnership provides the necessary expertise to produce credible sustainability standards for home appliances. A major element of appliance sustainability clearly is energy consumption. We will build on our expertise in the energy area but will also employ a lifecycle approach to identify and measure other significant environmental aspects of appliances. UL and CSA Standards, leading North American standards development organizations for appliances, have the credibility and expertise for this initiative.”

Bonnie Rose, president, CSA Standards, said: “This cooperative process will help advance the scientific foundation for evaluating the sustainability performance of consumer products across their life cycle and help consumers make informed purchasing decisions.”

“UL's hundred and sixteen years of experience building safety standards, combined with UL Environment’s expertise in sustainability, will provide practical insight to improve both products and manufacturing processes included in this collaborative effort,” said Stephen Wenc, president of UL Environment, a wholly owned subsidiary of Underwriters Laboratories.

Five Winds International, an internationally recognized sustainability consulting firm, has been selected as a project manager for the AHAM project. Five Winds brings 13 years experience in developing and implementing sustainability strategy to improve the sustainability of companies and has been instrumental in helping to write international environmental standards.

As part of the standards development process, the group will engage a cross-section of stakeholders to ensure that the standard is both credible and compatible with existing government and retailer initiatives. “Our ultimate aim is to develop a metric that will instill consumer confidence,” said McGuire.