22 June 2010 – The Green Building Council today announced a new product certifier has been added to its Green Star Assessment Framework, The Australasian FurnishingResearch and Development Institute Limited.

AFRDI now joins the Carpet Institute of Australia’s Environmental Certification Scheme and Ecospecifier’s GreenTag GreenRate in the scheme. An announcement on Good Environmental Choice’s

The move and other changes to Green Star’s attitude to building materials such as PVC and steel, were covered earlier this year in an extensive article in  The Fifth Estate.

Previously, only Good Environmental Choice Australia certified products were “deemed to satisfy” the requirements of the material calculator credits in Green Star rating tools.

The GBCA has said that it would continue to recognise GECA certified products during a transition period from 30 June 2009 to 1 July 2010 and that  GECA certified products will continue to be recognised after the transition period provided that GECA and the standards it operates have been assessed against, and have complied with, the full scope of the Framework.

GBCA chief executive Romilly Madew, congratulated AFRDI and said the certification would provide “further options for manufacturers wanting their products to achieve points under the Green Star Materials Category.

“The GBCA has opened the market through our new Assessment Framework, and this new certification is positive reconfirmation that all schemes can be recognised equally, provided they meet the Framework’s stringent criteria,” Ms Madew said.

She added that the GBCA does not “test, review or certify products or materials” being used in buildings registered for Green Star.”

Instead, third party certification bodies are relied upon for testing and environmental assessments of products and materials, Ms Madew said.

The Assessment Framework for Product Certification Schemes was developed as part of the GBCA’s ongoing review of theGreen Star environmental rating system for buildings.

For details of the framework and recent media releases see:  www.gbca.org.au/green-star/materials-category/product-certification- schemes/2933.htm