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Icestone, Steelcase Receive Cradle to Cradle Certification

Office furniture maker Steelcase Inc. and durable service manufacturer Icestone have received Cradle to Cradle Certification from McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry.

The certifications were annoucned at the annual Greenbuild International Conference & Expo presented by the U.S. Green Building Council. Certification.

The Cradle to Cradle Product Certification places a major emphasis on the human and ecological health impacts of a material's ingredients, and focuses on the ability to recycle or safely compost that material. In addition to stringent material criteria, which includes prohibiting the use of PVC, companies seeking this certification are required to meet strict criteria for social fairness and corporate practices and ethics.

Steelcase received certification for its powered workstation, which consists of panels, wood worksurfaces, and overhead and floor-based storage. The certification recognizes the use of ecologically-intelligent materials and cradle-to-cradle product design in the products and storage components of Steelcase's Answer system.

"Steelcase continues to demonstrate a true commitment to the cradle-to-cradle design concept through its material choices, product designs and advanced manufacturing processes," said William McDonough, architect, designer and co-founder of McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry.

"Steelcase began the Cradle to Cradle workstation certification process with Answer because it is one of the best selling systems products in the world, so it should have immediate and widespread impact. This may be the first, but we expect all of our leading systems products to achieve this certification within the next six to 12 months," said Allan Smith, vice president, global environmental strategy and programs, Steelcase Inc.

Additionally, Steelcase received an upgrade to gold for the Think chair (specific models) and silver certification for its Move chair. The Poly chair by Metro also received a silver certification. All products are on display at Greenbuild from November 15-17, 2006 at the Colorado Convention Center, booth 501.

IceStone, a fast growing Brooklyn-based company that turns post-consumer recycled glass into highly durable countertops and surfaces, earned the Cradle to Cradle certification for advanced design of environmentally friendly products.

"We are excited to award IceStone surfaces the first Cradle to Cradle Certification for a countertop," said Bill McDonough, co-author of the book and global sustainability guru. "It's very gratifying to see mission-driven companies like IceStone demonstrate leadership by assessing their products through the Cradle to Cradle design filters. This is a rigorous process and they achieved certification with flying colors."

"Our goal is to be the top choice for green countertops by producing beautiful materials that rival the strength of quarried stone, yet actively reduce the waste stream by redirecting glass from landfills to our environmentally friendly durable surfaces," said Miranda Magagnini, co-CEO of IceStone.

IceStone’s products are created by combining recycled glass with a scientifically advanced concrete compound. The manufacturing process is low-emission and the product contains no VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and produces no harmful indoor air pollutants. This year alone the company will remove 2.6 million pounds of glass from the waste stream and recycle it into highly durable, VOC-free countertops, vanities, wall cladding and flooring that look, feel and wear like granite.

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