EPA recommends the following private sector standards/ecolabels be used when purchasing furniture or any services that involve the use of furniture. All federal ecolabel program(s) and statutory requirement(s) that apply to this product category are also listed below.
If you are a U.S. federal government employee who would like free access to one of the private sector standards or ecolabels recommended by EPA, please email the EPP Program (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Before buying new, browse GSAXcess to find surplus and/or lightly used items.
Recommended Private Sector Standards/Ecolabels
1st Choice Private Sector Standards/Ecolabels:
Multi-attribute with confirmed accredited or conforming certification body:
ANSI/BIFMA e-3 Furniture Sustainability Standard – level® certified1 AND specification 1 & 2 below
TÜV Rheinland® Green Product Mark1 AND specification 2 below
Please note that these recommendations do not currently consider the standards'/ecolabels'/ certifications' effectiveness in addressing the potential environmental impacts of material harvesting and/or extraction.
If a product meeting a 1st Choice standard/ecolabel is not available, agencies can use one of these multi-attribute standards/ecolabels**:
If a product meeting one of the standards/ecolabels above is not available, agencies can use one or more of these single-attribute standards/ecolabels to address key hotspots:
Indoor Air Quality/VOC Emissions/Other Leadership Approaches to Chemicals:
Indoor Air Quality/VOC Emissions:
Association for Contract Textiles NSF/ANSI 336: Sustainability Assessment for Commercial Furnishings Fabric1 AND specification 1 & 2 below
EPA did not specifically solicit textile standards/ecolabels for the pilot. There could be others that are interested in being assessed per the Framework and considered for EPA's Recommendations in the future.
1) Add this specification when using the ANSI/BIFMA e-3, Cradle to Cradle (unless certified Gold or Platinum), Sustainable Furnishings Council Exemplary, SMaRT, SCS, Global Recycled Standard, and NSF/ANSI 336: Products shall meet the emissions requirements of BIFMA e3 criterion 7.6.2, or equivalent.
This VOC emission specification is necessary because this hotspot may not be addressed adequately for furniture meeting ANSI/BIFMA e-3, Cradle to Cradle, Sustainable Furnishings Council Exemplary, SMaRT, SCS, Global Recycled Standard, and NSF/ANSI 336.
2) Add this specification when using any of the private sector standards/ ecolabels listed above: Upholstered products shall meet Technical Bulletin 117-2013 (California's furniture flammability standard) and must comply with the labeling requirements California Senate Bill 1019, which was passed on September 30, 2014, and requires a label indicating whether the product contains or does not contain added Flame Retardants.
Applicable to ALL private sector standards/ecolabels listed above because Hazardous Flame Retardants are not addressed.
Federal Ecolabel Program
Agencies can use:
Products shall meet this statutory requirement:
Inclusion in the Recommendations is not an endorsement by EPA of the standards/ecolabels or of any of the products conformant to these standards/ecolabels, but rather a statement that the standard/ecolabel meets either EPA's Framework or is recommended for use by another Federal agency.