TheGreenOffice.Com Launches 'PVC-Free Workplace Campaign'

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The company is the first national office supply retailer to go PVC-free.

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The goals behind our PVC-Free Workplace Campaign are three-fold

TheGreenOffice.com, a one-stop-shop for office supplies emphasizing sustainable, green products, today launches its PVC-Free Workplace Campaign. As part of its initiative, the company has removed from its catalog close to 2,000 products that contain vinyl such as PVC (polyvinyl chloride).

Research has shown that hazardous chemicals such as mercury, lead and dioxins are used or released during the production and disposal of PVC, and that PVC itself may leach harmful phthalates. Vinyl chloride, the key building block of PVC, is classified by the Environmental Protection Agency as a Group A human carcinogen and has been linked to negative effects on the nervous system, as well as an increased incidence of birth defects, among other concerns.

"The goals behind our PVC-Free Workplace Campaign are three-fold," says Alex Szabo, CEO and founder of TheGreenOffice.com, "To raise awareness of the toxicity of PVC, to help consumers seek healthier alternatives, and to encourage our big-box competitors to go PVC-free as well."

More than two dozen nonprofits, foundations and green businesses officially support the campaign, including the Center for Environmental Health, Breast Cancer Action, Green Schools Initiative, and the Environmental Grantmakers Association. Many have promised to help spread the word, while others have pledged to go PVC-free in their own workplaces.

"We commend TheGreenOffice.com for taking this important step to protect our health from PVC, the poison plastic. Their efforts are a testament to the fact that phasing out PVC not only makes sense from an environmental health perspective, but also makes good business sense. It is now time for all major office supply retailers to place consumers' health and environmental concerns first by joining TheGreenOffice.com's effort to phase PVC out of their products and packaging," says Michael Schade, Center for Health, Environment and Justice PVC Campaign Coordinator.

Because PVC is prevalent in office supplies, such as in vinyl binders, office furniture, desk accessories and even children's art supplies, TheGreenOffice.com plans to work directly with manufacturers to support the production of more PVC-free alternatives.

"Bravo to TheGreenOffice.com for being a leader in helping to bring consumer's values and more importantly - their basic health - to the attention of those who decide what materials to use in the everyday products we all assume are safe, when in fact they may not be," says filmmaker Daniel B. Gold, who co-directed and produced the award-winning documentary, Blue Vinyl.

The company also plans to educate its customers on the potential health risks associated with PVC exposure through informative newsletters, tips on how to go PVC-free, postings to popular green blogs, and support for programs to reduce toxins in our environment.

"Our company is founded on triple-bottom-line values: People, Planet and Profit," says Szabo. "By refusing to carry harmful products made with PVC, we are supporting healthier communities and a cleaner environment. Our customers recognize that we are a truly sustainable, green business. More than simply cashing in on the popularity of green products, we are fully committed to social and environmental causes that will lead to a greener office products industry and improved human and ecological well-being."

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Jesse Gibbs

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