More companies than ever are taking the global initiative to become more sustainable. From reducing carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere to utilizing green building materials, industries are continuously seeking new ways to improve the environment and minimize their impact on issues like pollution and global warming.
We conclude our series on sustainability by discussing what FloorScore® certification is and the steps Action Floor Systems® has taken to become FloorScore®-certified.
FloorScore® Certification Meaning
The FloorScore® certification is obtained through a voluntary program that tests and certifies hard surface flooring and associated products for compliance with specific criteria. The FloorScore® certification is the most recognized indoor air quality (IAQ) certification standard for flooring interior materials and adhesives. Unlike EPD® certification, which looks at the sustainable efforts of an entire industry, FloorScore® focuses on specific products within a company to assess the amount of gasses and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) being emitted by the tested products.
The FloorScore® program was established in response to the demand from consumers and architects to work with companies that produced green building materials with low VOC emission. Because of the increasing popularity of resilient hardwood sports flooring, Action Floors collaborated with SCS Global Services, a third-party environmental and sustainability certification and standards development, and the Resilient Floor Covering Institute (RFCI) to have our resilient systems assessed for FloorScore® certification.
Don Brown, Technical Director at Action Floors, shed light on what a VOC is and how these harmful chemicals are identified.
“Imagine walking into a new house that smells strongly of fresh paint and new carpet. While a homeowner may interpret these smells as being new and clean, these odors may actually be VOCs emissions from the installed product,” said Don.
To conduct the test, SCS Global Services placed a sample of maple flooring in a chamber to measure the amount of VOCs emitted from the product. While various flooring materials such as carpeting and vinyl often contain more chemicals, the organic nature of raw hardwood easily allowed Action Floors’ maple products to meet the threshold of the program.
The second part of the certification process involves having an auditor inspect the product’s manufacturing plant. This thorough examination looks closely at all aspects of a business, from handling the raw materials, to manufacturing and quality control process, to the safety of the employees’ work environment.
To remain FloorScore®-certified, companies must undergo routine audits and continued product testing to ensure VOC levels are within range of the program. These tests are conducted annually or bi-annually based on a company’s initial test results.
As the only MFMA-accredited mill to be FloorScore®-certified, Action Floors is proud to have not one, but two product lines that are certified. SCS Global certified our solid maple hardwood flooring for containing less than 0.5 mg/m³ of total VOCs.
Additionally, our synthetic floor system, Action Herculan MF multifunction floor also received FloorScore® certification for containing measurements of less than 0.5 mg/m³ of total VOCs.
“Action Herculan MF is an athletic-specific synthetic floor system that is made up of 15 different system configurations,” said Don. “In order for them all to meet the requirements necessary for certification, we take the worst case scenario, meaning the thickest material containing the most resins and have it tested. If that type qualifies, all other floors in the system also qualify.”
One of the motivating factors behind Action Floors’ decision to become FloorScore®-certified was to remain up to date with California flooring standards, the increasing presence of FloorScore® in specifications and the possibility of contributing to LEED qualifications for certain building projects, Don explains.
“Due to the recently growing demand for FloorScore® certification, we realized the significance in maintaining the same standards in manufacturing sustainable products. Simply put, a product that is FloorScore®-certified is a healthier product,” said Don.
Upholding Our Sustainable Efforts Every Step of the Way
At Action Floors, we believe the quality of our products reflects our commitment to sustainability. That’s why as a leader in our industry, we are proud to demonstrate environmental responsibility in reducing energy consumption and minimizing waste in every stage, from the mill to the finished floor.
In addition to being FloorScore®-certified, Action Floors is the only MFMA-affiliated athletic sports flooring company to hold a proprietary EPD, and the only mill to be certified as carbon-negative. Our commitment to sustainability gives us great pride in having certifications that no other company in the industry has. To remain a leader in the industry, we closely follow our goals outlined in our third-party verifiable SCORES (Sustainable Construction of Renewable Engineered Surfaces) program.
Since day one, we’ve stood by our dedication to manufacture and distribute materials that offer users an exceptional playing surface without impacting the environment. For more information on our commitment to sustainable practices and the FloorScore® certification process, click here or contact your local sales representative today.