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primers. The current CARB standard for non-chemically curing sealants for consumer use is <1.5% by weight, measured in grams of VOC per liter of adhesive, less water and less exempt compounds (g/L). Another widely recognized voluntary certification standard to look for is GREENGUARD Certification to validate low-VOC products. In fact, more than 400 green building codes, standards, guidelines, procurements policies and rating systems give credit for GREENGUARD Certified products. Formerly known as GREENGUARD Indoor Air Quality Certification, the GREENGUARD Certification Program ensures that products used specifically in commercial building applications meet stringent chemical emission limits for 360 separate VOC's resulting in healthier indoor environments for all occupants. The GREENGUARD Gold standard (formerly known as GREENGUARD Children & Schools Certification) is designed to protect the safety of sensitive individuals like the very young and elderly in applications that can include schools and healthcare facilities. GREENGUARD Gold Certified products must also comply with requirements of the State of California's Department of Public Health "Standard Method for the Testing and Evaluation of Volatile Organic Chemical Emissions from Indoor Sources Using Environmental Chambers, Version 1.1 (2010)." Another important motivator for manufacturers to offer low-emitting products like caulks and sealants is the contribution of LEED compliance for a building or structure by improving indoor air quality. For subcontractors, the active pursuit of LEED points can help score brownie points with an employer, whose building will benefit from their use of these alternatives for as long as the products perform to industry standards. In recent years, many manufacturers have dedicated their efforts toward the greening of their products and the voluntary pursuit of highly reputable, third-party accreditation. That's because both the market and the industry have changed greatly over the past 20 to 30 years. The health and welfare of contractors who use these products every day, concerns of their customers and the environment are now culminating into a universal awareness. Contractors and consumers are more demanding and knowledgeable than ever before when it comes to the welfare of their homes and family as well as the potential risks posed by products that were previously used for decades without a second thought. Workers and subcontractors have also become keenly aware of the adverse implications associated with both the short- and long-term exposure to VOCs and the related chemicals used within the materials that they use every day on the job. In addition to the moral implications, personal injury lawyers permeate the land. When in doubt, go with the safer, credible choice. Your employees and customers, the environment, and possibly even your bottom line will welcome the APC added effort. Jason Ringling is marketing director of RED DEVIL Inc. See Advertiser Index on Page 38 AMERICAN PAINTING CONTRACTOR • October 2013 35

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