Take an inside look into emerging markets and trends. Gain valuable new perspectives from HBN experts and our partners. Be inspired to know better.

Flux, HBN, thinkstep and Google Collaborate to Launch the Quartz Database at VERGE 2015

Quartz Project | October 27, 2015 | Tools

Product transparency is more than just an ingredient label. It is a catalyst that triggers greater collaboration among manufacturers and their customers. It is the renewable energy of a continuous and increasingly open innovation process that is the key to addressing the sustainability challenges we face. The database of 100 "common product pr...

Recycling in the Age of Product Transparency

Wes Sullens | October 22, 2015 | Materials

Next year, the dominant green rating system in the world will complete the transition to a new iteration: LEED version 4. This transition sends a strong signal to the materials industry: the definition of green materials in LEED is shifting from single attributes like "rapidly renewable" or recycled content percentages, towards considerin...

Powerful New Open Data Project Gets Rave Reviews

Rebecca Stamm | October 16, 2015 | Tools

Now in our 15th year, the Healthy Building Network has been busy as beavers, felling more obstacles, building more useful infrastructures, with more partners, than ever. In the coming weeks, we will be unveiling many of these initiatives with Healthy Building News readers and the world at large. Front and center among these is a collaboration calle...

Chemicals Without Harm: Policies For A Sustainable World

Bill Walsh | October 02, 2015 | Policies

Ken Geiser's Book Tour October Events

Monday, October 5, 6:00-8:00 Parsons School of Design, The New School, L105 University Center 65 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York

Monday, October 13, 11:45-12:50 Santa Clara University, Benson Parlor B 500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA

Tuesday, October 20, 2:00-3:00 UC Berkeley, 775 Tan, Univ...

Clear Lessons For Recycling Glass In Building Products

James Vallette | September 30, 2015 | Materials

The use of recycling materials in building products is evolving. The latest version of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED version 4) green building rating system no longer explicitly credits recycled materials, but it does reward transparency and disclosure of product lifecycles and contents. While recycling is more important t...

HBN Board Chair Robin Guenther Gives TEDMED Talk

Bill Walsh | September 17, 2015 | Announcements

Last September the Chair of HBN's Board of Directors, Robin Guenther, delivered a TEDMED talk entitled Why Hospitals Are Making Us Sick. That talk is now available for viewing, and we are pleased to bring it to you here. Robin is a leading expert and textbook author, with Gail Vittori, of Sustainable Healthcare Architecture. As principal at Per...

Firsts At The Living Product Expo

Bill Walsh | August 20, 2015 | Announcements

The International Living Future Institute (ILFI) will convene its first Living Product Expo next month in Pittsburgh.  In addition to the much anticipated roll out of the Living Product Challenge during a pre-conference workshop, the conference organizers have created program full of leading experts at the forefront of healthy materials develo...

The end is near for phthalate plasticizers

James Vallette | July 09, 2015 | Materials

The market for toxic plasticizers in building materials is closing.  Yesterday, a third major retailer – Menards – announced that it is following Home Depot and Lowe’s leads, and will end the use of phthalate plasticizers in its vinyl floors by the end of 2015.  This follows similar actions by the world’s largest f...

Consumer Reports warns parents: phthalates migrate from PVC floors

James Vallette | July 09, 2015 | Optimized Recycling

Parents should wash their toddlers’ hands, and regularly mop vinyl floors, especially if children crawl on the floors, warns the Consumers Union in the August 2015 issue of Consumer Reports. (1)


The Consumers Union is the advocacy arm of the venerable Consumers Reports magazine. It has “long raised concerns about phthalates,&rd...

New health concerns about common additives to carpet fibers

James Vallette | July 08, 2015 | Materials

Public health experts are sounding new alarms about two types of chemicals that are applied to carpet fibers: perchlorate anti-static treatments and perfluorochemical stain repellents.

Perchlorate anti-static treatments

Carpet manufacturers often add anti-static (antistat) treatments to carpet fibers, in order to prevent the buildup of electri...