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January 4, 2012

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News & Updates

GC3 Project Groups Updates

Advancing Green Chemistry Education
The Green Chemistry Education group has drafted a GC3 Policy Statement on Green Chemistry in Higher Education. The statement supports the University Green Chemistry Commitment that is being advanced by Beyond Benign. The group held a discussion on the call in December 2011 and is awaiting comments on the draft statement before revising it in early January. The group will then seek sign ons from GC3 members and develop an outreach strategy for the statement.

Business and Academic Partnerships for Safer Chemicals
The Business & Academic Partnerships group is working on two fronts to advance its pilot of an approach for businesses, academia and NGOs to work collaboratively to find green chemistry solutions. On one front, the group has developed several protocols for structuring its work: Protocol for Handling Business-Sensitive Information; Draft Language to Appear in GC3 Report on Plasticizers; and Process for Presenting, Discussing and Commenting on GreenScreen™ Reports. In addition, the group is working toward the completion of GreenScreen™ chemical hazard assessments for the wire and cable plasticizers selected by the group for evaluation in this pilot. Once the GreenScreen assessments are complete, the group will publish and disseminate the results for use beyond the GC3 community.

Engaging Retailers in the Adoption of Safer Products 
The Engaging Retailers in the Adoption of Safer Products project group has completed one of its projects for the year: Retail Initiatives on Safer Products. This is an inventory of initiatives and organizations relevant to retailers that are advancing sustainability with a focus on safer chemicals and products in order to understand the landscape of activities in this area. The page Retailer Chemicals Policy Efforts has also been added to the GC3 website illustrating over twenty retailer’s chemicals policies including restricted substances lists, general chemicals/materials policies, product sustainability indices, corporate sustainability reports, and general sustainability program and policy information.

A meeting request for a retailer call in early January will be sent out at the beginning of 2012 which will include revising the business case for green chemistry in the retail industry, next steps for a webinar series for retailers and a potential retailer event.

Facilitating Chemical Data Flow Along Supply Chains
This project group is about to begin the final task of its electronics sector chemical data standardization pilot project -- tracing chemical content data for a single part through an actual supply chain to examine the specific data elements that are picked up, transformed, or dropped out along the way. The overall objective of the pilot is to evaluate the feasibility and benefits of standardizing chemical data types/formats/collection systems across companies in supply chains. The pilot team is made of representatives from companies in an actual supply chain: Texas Instruments, Seagate, HP and Staples. The group is currently focused on systems for gathering chemical content information (i.e., chemical ingredients in formulations, materials, components, products sourced from suppliers) and hopes to tackle chemicals used in manufacturing in a future project. 

GC3 presents at the BizNGO conference

Joel Tickner presented work of the GC3 Facilitating Chemical Data Flow along Supply Chains group on data standardization at the recent BizNGO Working group for Safer Chemicals meeting at Staples in Framingham MA. The GC3 effort was discussed alongside efforts of other organizations seeking to improve chemical ingredient and toxicity data along supply chains, such as the Healthy Building Network and Clean Production Action. 

Upcoming Webinars and Events

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The Making and Marketing of Greener Products

 A GC3 Webinar
Speaker:
Al Iannuzzi, Senior Director of Product Stewardship and Green Marketing, Johnson & Johnson
Date:
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Time:
2pm Eastern/ 11am Pacific
Cost:
Free to GC3 members; $50 for non-members.

Webinar Description: Learn about the drivers for developing greener products, and case studies of how leading companies like GE, Seventh Generation, SC Johnson, BASF, etc. develop and market greener products. Marketing methods and market segmentation of consumers will be discussed, as well as greenwashing and the proper use of eco-labels. Learn about the best practices for both making and marketing greener products.

Dial In Information: Dial-in and connection information has been circulated to GC3 members over the green-innovation listserv. Non-members wishing to participate will receive connection information upon payment.

Non-Member Registration Form

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7th Annual GC3 Innovators Roundtable
May 9-11, 2012

Please join us for the 7th Annual GC3 Innovators Roundtable where leading companies across supply chains share relevant and up to date information, experiences and knowledge to advance the implementation of green chemistry and design for environment practices and the production and marketing of safer chemicals, materials and products.

Sponsor this Event
Some of the many benefits of sponsoring the GC3 Innovators Roundtable include complimentary registrations to the 7th Annual Roundtable, as well as sponsor logos being featured prominently at the event, on all promotional conference materials, and on the GC3 Events webpage for the coming year. 

For full sponsorship benefits please contact Sarah Shields.

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Beyond Benign Green Chemistry Commitment Summit

January 10, 2012
The Green Chemistry Commitment is a systematic response to the demand for safer, non-toxic products and processes, shifting educational institutions to prepare students to enter the workforce armed with the skills and knowledge to create society’s next generation of sustainable materials. The summit will provide an opportunity to present the draft of the Commitment text to the larger community of green chemistry and sustainability stakeholders as well as discuss next steps

Green Chemistry News

adidas Group, C&A, H&M, Li Ning, Nike and Puma Partner to Reach Zero Discharge by 2020
adidas Group, C&A, H&M, Li Ning, NIKE, Inc. and Puma announced the release of a joint roadmap towards zero discharge of hazardous chemicals (ZDHC) in the supply chain by 2020. It is an ambitious plan, one that sets a new standard of environmental performance for the global apparel and footwear industry.

BizNGO releases frameworks to help companies choose more sustainable and safer ingredients
The BizNGO Group released two important frameworks to help companies choose more sustainable plastics and safer chemicals for their products: The Principles for Sustainable Plastics, and the Chemical Alternatives Assessment Protocol (v.1.0): How to Select Safer Alternatives to Chemicals of Concern to Human Health or the Environment.

EPA releases ‘hundreds’ of confidential studies
U.S. EPA released "hundreds" of health studies on chemicals that were submitted to the agency by manufacturers but had previously been shielded from the public. The new studies are available through EPA's Chemical Data Access Tool.

Patagonia’s conscientious response to Black Friday consumer madness
In the midst of the madness of black Friday came a few wise words from the outdoor retailer Patagonia. In a full-page ad in the New York Times, the privately held company asked shoppers to think more carefully about what they purchase, and the real cost of all the things we buy.

REACH starts to earn its "A": 20 chemicals headed to the Candidate List and 13 to Authorization
On December 19th, the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) announced it has added 20 more Substances of Very High Concern (SVHCs) to REACH’s Candidate List.  These SVHCs are now eligible for later addition to Annex XIV, the list of SVHCs subject to Authorization. 

US Tox21 to begin screening 10,000 chemicals
A high-speed robotic screening system, aimed at protecting human health by improving how chemicals are tested in the United States, began December 7, 2011 to test 10,000 compounds for potential toxicity. The compounds cover a wide variety of classifications, and include consumer products, food additives, chemicals found in industrial processes, and human and veterinary drugs.

For more information on the work of the GC3, contact Sarah_Shields@uml.edu or call 978-934-2997.

2014 Lowell Center for Sustainable Production University of Massachusetts Lowell

UMLLCSP

The Green Chemistry and Commerce Council is a project of The Lowell Center for Sustainable Production,
a research center at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.