Question

Good, non-toxic floor brands, green seals and tips for Europe?

Asked by Jasmine
Alexandria, VA

I find great info on your site for all my flooring q's, particularly what are "healthier" floors (non/not so toxic), but I live in Europe now (Holland) and have run into many road blocks while trying to finde good floors or even good brands here. Any tips--including any e.g. Green Seal equivalents for Europe? Thanks!

Answer

It is always very overwhelming for clients as well for design professionals to determine which product is the best sustainable choice for each project.

Many factors need to be carefully considered, especially now since almost all products claim to be “Green”.

BREEAM. In Europe you might find help by looking at the certification system originated 1990 in the UK called BREEAM – Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method.

  • BREEAM is an equivalent rating system to LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).
  • BREEAM is publishing the Green Guide to Specification (read it here) which will be helpful for your to evaluate different types of products.
  • A presentation called “Flooring and Internal Partitioning” (read it here) discussed at the Surface Design Show in London in 2009 might be of interest to you as well. 

DGNB. Alternatively you can obtain help from the German evaluation system DGNB (Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer Nachhaltiges Bauen | German Sustainable Building Council) established in 2007.

Do you have a question about greening your home? GreenHomeGuide invites you to Ask A Pro. Let our network of experienced green building professionals – architects, designers, contractors, electricians, energy experts, landscapers, tile & stone specialists, and more – help you find the right solution.