Sustainability Office

Sustainable Queen's
Sustainable Queen's

Green Cleaninggreen bottle spraying leaves

Green cleaning has been practiced at Queen's by Residences and PPS since 2008.  What does this mean?

Cleaning Products

The cleaning chemicals that are use are primarily EcoLogo certified.  This means that they are fragrance and dye-free, and break down in the waste water stream as oxygen and hydrogen.  Additionally, where available these products are purchased in concentrated form and diluted on site through automated dispensers.  This delivery system reduces packaging waste and decreases supply delivery frequencies.  

Consumable Products

Hand towels and toilet tissue, plastic bin liners and hand soap are all sourced with sustainability in mind.  The paper products are produced without the use of chorine or other solvents and are comprised of 100% recycled fiber.  The plastic bin liners are made from 100% recycled plastic and are biodegradable.  All of the hand soap across campus is dye and fragrance-free, biodegradable and the foam format reduces product and packaging consumption by roughly 50% over traditional liquid soaps.

Cleaning Tools 

Many of the cleaning tools used by our custodians are designed to be more sustainable.  Microfiber cleaning tools including mops, cloths and dusters are now common to Queen's.  These systems are beneficial because they are reusable with a long product life, they are better at trapping and holding particles and because of this property they tend to require less water and/or cleaning chemical.  Furthermore, microfiber systems tend to be colour coded in order to help reduce cross-contamination potential when switching cleaning from one surface to the next.

The larger equipment used by custodians is also advancing with sustainability in mind.  Vacuums have specifications that are energy efficient, include enhanced HEPA filtration systems that reduce improve indoor air quality and that operate at reduced noise levels.  Newer floor scrubbers are also now designed to require less water throughput and rely less on chemicals, as their mechanical actions and pad technologies have improved.