Perspectives on greener product development and manufacturing from Sustainable Minds, our partners, customers and contributors.

Certifications & labeling

The SM Transparency Report™ Program – The Genesis

By Sustainable Minds on September 17, 2014

A step change innovation in the PCR/EPD process to standardize, harmonize and make product transparency reporting understandable and meaningful. It’s also faster, scalable, cost efficient and user-friendly.

Now that environmental performance is a standard criteria in product design, shouldn’t greener be a standard part of how products are marketed?

We wondered in B2B marketing, why is there typically one document describing product features and benefits—and a separate technical document ONLY about the product’s environmental performance? Don’t manufacturers have enough product literature to manage already? And don’t customers already have too many pieces of disparate information to put together to make purchase decisions?

If environmental performance is to be operationalized into the way products are designed and marketed, it requires an integrated mindset, process and technology solution.

SM Transparency Report™ Framework: Introduction and comparison to ISO14025 type III environmental declarations

By Sustainable Minds on June 24, 2014

Webcast recorded Tue, June 24, 2014

Last week, Sustainable Minds launched the SM Transparency Report™ Program, an alternative to the PCR/EPD process with equivalent credibility, verification – plus much more.

This week, we invite you to join us for an introduction to the program's methodology – the SM Transparency Report Framework.

Based on EN15804+A1 and in compliance with ISO 14040-44 and 14025, the framework provides a comprehensive LCA-based, harmonized and user-friendly way to create product group definitions to enhance consistency in product transparency reporting. It then delivers a strategic marketing and lead generation tool to inform greener purchase decisions by making LCA and environmental performance information understandable and meaningful.

You will learn on this webcast:

The SM Transparency Report™ Program – The Launch

By Sustainable Minds on June 20, 2014

With the rollout of LEED v4 and the focus on product transparency reporting, there is confusion and anxiety in the building products industry around product category rules and environmental product declarations (PCRs and EPDs).

SM Transparency Reports were introduced at Greenbuild 2013, to provide manufacturers a new way to communicate the environmental performance of their products in an understandable, credible and consistent way.

Since then, Sustainable Minds has been developing its methodology to complete the program’s offering – the SM Transparency Report™ Framework. Based on EN15804+A1 and is in compliance with ISO 14040-44 and 14025, it provides a comprehensive LCA-based, harmonized and user-friendly way to create product group definitions (PGD) up front to enhance consistency in product transparency reporting.

Sustainable Minds is now launching the complete solution. The SM Transparency Report Program is the first comprehensive solution for product manufacturers to Design and Market greener products. It is an alternative to the PCR/EPD process with equivalent credibility, verification – plus much more.

NSF International and Sustainable Minds Partner to Accelerate Product Transparency Reporting

By Sustainable Minds on June 11, 2014

Sustainable Minds Transparency Report™ Program offers an innovative market solution to the growing need for product transparency reporting and verification

ANN ARBOR, Mich. and CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Sustainable Minds has partnered with NSF Sustainability, a division of global public health organization NSF International, to provide life cycle assessment (LCA) verification and report certification for Sustainable Minds Transparency Reports™.

Sustainable Minds (SM), a software and services provider founded to operationalize environmental performance into mainstream product development and manufacturing,will introduce the complete SM Transparency Report™ Program to manufacturers and industry advocates through a webinar on Tuesday, June 17, 2014, at 2:00 pm EST.  Sign up at sustainableminds.com/weekly-webinar.

SM Transparency Reports, third party verified by NSF Sustainability and based on ISO 14044 compliant LCAs, are an alternative transparency reporting tool to environmental product declarations (EPDs). NSF Sustainability’s extensive background in certifying environmental reports and sustainable products and services provides additional credibility for the contents of the transparency reports.

Webcast Replay: SM Transparency Reports, a solution to the LCA/EPD/PCR conundrum

By Sustainable Minds on January 28, 2014

In response to market demand and LEED v4, three companies with a common mission to bring credibly greener products to the marketplace -- Sustainable Minds, TOTO USA and NSF International -- have introduced a new product for manufacturers to transparently report the environmental performance of their products.

TOTO Is The First Plumbing Manufacturer To Validate Its Products' Environmental Performance With New SM Transparency Reports

By Sustainable Minds on December 17, 2013

Company Innovates a Solution and Goes Beyond Compliance in Response to LEED v4's 'Building Product Disclosure and Optimization' Option

MORROW, Ga., Nov. 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- TOTO announced today that it is introducing an innovative, new way to report product transparency that enables customers to earn LEED v4 credit for select high-efficiency toilets. Committed to environmental leadership that exceeds compliance, TOTO discovered that it was unable to comply with LEED v4's disclosure option to provide Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for its high-efficiency toilets. The company could not do this because there is no Product Category Rule for toilets (PCRs define the requirements of EPDs for each product category). EPDs are required for its building industry customers to earn the highest number of LEED points for purchasing TOTO products. To solve this problem, TOTO, already using Sustainable Minds' LCA software to help it design sustainable products, turned to the company to help it solve this problem marketing.

Sustainable Minds' New Tool Adds Approachability to Product Life Cycle Transparency

By Sustainable Minds on December 17, 2013

via sustainablebrands.com

The first company to publish its product lifecycle information with SM Transparency Reports is leading plumbing manufacturer TOTO USA. The need for a new solution became evident when TOTO was not able to comply with the new LEED v4 disclosure option to provide EPDs, for customers to earn the maximum available product credits for purchasing selected TOTO products. The company discovered there is no Product Category Rule (which defines the requirements for EPDs of a certain product category) for toilets, just as there are no PCRs for hundreds of other types of products used in building and construction.

Announcing SM v3.0 – New data, your data, Branded Data

By Sustainable Minds on May 14, 2013

Thank you for making Sustainable Minds the #1 Cloud LCA software for greener product innovation – now used in 600 locations in 60 countries. We are excited to bring you SM v3.0.

Sustainable Minds’ easy-to-use, standardized Life Cycle Assessment solution makes it possible for manufacturers across the value chain – large and small – to dynamically evaluate, compare and improve their products' environmental performance by integrating life cycle thinking and LCA into their product development processes. The company has been recognized by Gartner® in its 2013 Cool Vendor Report, in Product Design and Life Cycle Management, as 'innovative, impactful and intriguing.'

Now with SM v3.0, Sustainable Minds can partner with manufacturers to get visibility for your brand and make your product data available to manufacturers, consultancies, educators & students worldwide.

Webcast: Creating Knowledge Workers for the Greener Product Marketplace, Part 3: Integrating Ecodesign & LCA

By Sustainable Minds on September 24, 2012

On August 28th, we held the third in a series of webcasts that feature educators from leading colleges and universities demonstrating how Sustainable Minds is being used in education. Sustainable Minds merges practice and science, ecodesign and LCA. This webcast showcases three educators and practitioners – teaching materials, industrial design and geography – demonstrating their success stories. Educators with different expertise can use Sustainable Minds to teach lifecycle thinking through hands-on experience.

Webcast: Creating Knowledge Workers for the Greener Product Marketplace, Part 2: Getting Started

By Sustainable Minds on June 12, 2012

On May 24, we held the second in a series of webcasts that feature educators from leading colleges and universities demonstrating how Sustainable Minds is being used in education. This webcast showcases the creativity of two engineering and manufacturing educators discussing how they got started integrating Sustainable Minds into current projects and courses, and how they developed new ones. They reported not only a very high level of student engagement and enthusiasm, but a clear impact on students’ improved job marketability.