NSF Intl., AWWA Launch Sustainability Standard for Water Treatment Chemicals

April 16, 2015
NSF/AWWA/ANSI 416 gives manufacturers and distributors of water treatment chemicals a framework for measuring and reducing the environmental impacts of their products

Global public health organization NSF Intl. and the American Water Works Assn. (AWWA) have published the first American National Standard for assessing the sustainability of water treatment chemical products—NSF/AWWA/ANSI 416: Sustainability Assessment Standard for Water Treatment Chemical Products.

Manufacturers and distributors (including repackagers and relabelers) of water treatment chemicals now have a framework for measuring and reducing the environmental impacts of their products, providing more sustainable purchase options to municipal water treatment facilities and industrial and consumer users of treatment chemicals.

To obtain certification to this standard, organizations must have implemented environmental and social management policies, and measure and document their water and energy use. They also must meet all prerequisite requirements pertaining to product design, manufacturing processes, efficacy and corporate social responsibility, as well as optional criteria in these categories. Organizations meeting these requirements can minimize the environmental and human impacts of their products and have the potential to reduce costs through more efficient use of materials, energy and water.

“NSF Intl.’s 70 year history of protecting and improving water quality and the environment is reflected in this new standard, NSF/AWWA/ANSI 416, which helps manufacturers of water treatment chemical products measure, manage and reduce environmental impact and reduce cost,” said Tom Bruursema, general manager of environmental and sustainability services at NSF Intl. “Manufacturers can reduce their material, energy and water consumption which contributes to improving sustainability.”

“Supporting the development of a standard that encourages the production and use of more sustainable treatment chemical products provides another tool for our members striving to lower the environmental impact of their operations,” said Paul Olson, senior manager of standards at AWWA.

The sustainability assessment criteria of NSF/AWWA/ANSI 416 are divided into five categories:

  • Chemical Product Design – Encourages product designers and developers to minimize negative environmental and human impacts throughout the product life cycle
  • Chemical Product Manufacturing Process  – Encourages manufacturers to monitor and minimize the environmental impacts of the product’s manufacturing process
  • Chemical Product Efficacy – Ensures the product performs at or above recognized industry standards
  • Product End-of-Life Management – Ensures products, including their packaging, can be collected and re-processed within existing recycling infrastructure
  • Corporate Governance – Encourages organizational leadership and social responsibility with a focus on occupational health and safety, data transparency and community involvement

Certification to NSF/AWWA/ANSI 416 is based on point totals. Manufacturers or distributors working with a certified manufacturer must meet all prerequisite requirements and a minimum number of applicable optional criteria for their product to be certified. Certified products and related advertising or marketing materials may carry the NSF Intl. Sustainability Certified mark and are included in NSF Intl.’s certified product listings.

Source: NSF Intl.