Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve continued to provide essential services, expanding and adapting our response to effectively meet the safety, security and sustainability demands of the moment. Meanwhile, our understanding of the systemic inequalities, vulnerabilities and global challenges to prosperity has grown alongside the harmful effects of the virus on culture, economics and populations. Our intent remains focused on helping the world become a better place, and to progressing a prosperous and resilient future. The role we play in helping secure this possibility is directly linked to our founding legacy to “do something for humanity” by helping create safer living and working environments for people everywhere.
2020 called upon our ability to quickly adapt and to strengthen our resilience. In the face of the greatest human challenge in recent memory, people around the world responded with ingenuity, innovation and collaboration. At UL, we embraced technology, became more efficient and discovered new and improved ways to fulfill our mission. Our own 126-year history offers the proof of how some of society’s greatest challenges spawned some of its greatest improvements. Now, we are at an opportune turning point again in human history as the world recovers from this unprecedented crisis. Working to fulfill our commitment to our mission and helping to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals is our roadmap to build back better. As we move ahead, we will continue to empower the innovative solutions that help promote progress and prosperity for all.
COVID-19 essential services
Operating as an essential business, the importance of the work we undertake every day became indisputably evident. During 2020, our ways of working were challenged by the pandemic. In answer, we rapidly developed new essential service offerings, and utilized technology to perform virtual audits, making experts available without compromising quality or safety. We didn’t lose sight of our role as the global safety science leader, but opened more avenues to share our safety expertise with the public, offering free webinars and tutorials on pandemic safety through our PureSafety™ learning software, creating a free hand sanitizer safety data sheet, and publishing our Start Safe Playbook as a public contribution to worker and workplace safety.
The essential nature of our everyday work and our positive impact on our targeted Sustainable Development Goals regarding human health and well-being (Goal No. 3), sustainable cities and communities (Goal No. 11) and responsible consumption and production (Goal No. 12) is exemplified by our COVID-19 support services:
- Explore how we've contributed to the COVID-19 relief effort
Building and Equipment Safety
Building owners and asset managers faced new challenges in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, like dormancy, social distancing and heightened infection control protocols. Our safety solutions help mitigate the impacts of the pandemic on building, equipment and occupants, allowing building owners to demonstrate the efficacy of fire, life safety, security and sanitation processes and assess machinery and equipment to reassure occupants returning to work.
UL’s Healthy Buildings
UL's Healthy Buildings adapted during the pandemic to address new concerns raised by COVID-19 regarding buildings that had been closed for long periods and needed a safe path to reopening and inspiring occupancy trust. In response to customers’ requests, UL quickly developed a suite of healthy buildings recovery services and advisory, to help ensure safe reoccupancy during the pandemic. UL’s building recovery services allow customers to share their test reports and offer confidence in building safety.
UL’s employee safety services help ensure employee health and safety plans reflect the latest industry best practices and guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other authorities. They help address the need for employee health and safety training, employee health monitoring and COVID-19 reporting.
As the demand for life-saving medical equipment grew in the current COVID-19 environment, manufacturers needed to transform to help meet the global demand to create needed devices. Our Field Evaluations assist manufacturers with factory retooling plan reviews and on-site evaluations to test for compliance and check for critical safety issues as machinery is retooled and manipulated. We also offer medical equipment and device audits to ISO 13485, the internationally recognized quality indicator that demonstrates the ability to provide medical devices and related services.
Medical and Pharmaceutical Innovation and Transformation
The healthcare sector is transforming as manufacturers develop the breakthrough solutions and technologies to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. Manufacturers are innovating proactive monitoring medical devices and products, expanding digitization and remote patient care systems and repurposing and warehousing healthcare assets utilized during COVID-19 Emergency Use Authorizations (EUA). UL provides comprehensive solutions for medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturers and companies to enable the safety, performance and security of these innovations, helping launch the products and systems shaping the future of healthcare.
New and Altered Medical Devices and Products
Emergency-use provisions in the U.S., Europe and other regions allow manufacturers of ventilators, personal protective equipment (PPE) and other products expedited market access; but quality, safety and performance requirements must be met. We offer accelerated and virtual options for many of our routine healthcare product testing and inspection services to help manufacturers successfully and safely address supply shortages. This helps streamline the go-to-market process for re-engineered products that include new features or health benefits to meet emerging needs stemming from the pandemic.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Product Testing
UL evaluates PPE and attire to industry standards for safety and performance, including regulations and guidelines provided by the World Health Organization COVID-19 Operational Support and Logistics Disease Commodity Packages, the CDC, the FDA and the European Commission. We test and certify a wide range of PPE products including face shields, respirators, surgical gowns, medical gloves and more.
Prioritizing health and well-being
Around the world, people don face masks and face coverings to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. As a result, worldwide demand for these products has soared. More and more manufacturers are producing face masks, and for many of them, the product is new to their manufacturing line. On top of the increased number of face masks being produced, there are now several different types of face masks and face coverings, with different intended purposes including surgical masks for doctors and nurses; source control masks used by the public to prevent transmission of illness and diseases; and nonmedical mask/face coverings, such as a dusk mask. Each of these requires different sets of tests based on how they are regulated and testing for each is completely different. With this in mind, UL’s Consumer and Retail Services team rapidly extended our services to help ensure the safety and performance of these protective items.
Within our own offices and laboratories, we deferred the use of N95 masks unless critically necessary, to support the needs of health care workers and first responders.
UL's Field Engineering partners with National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
As the virus spread around the world, we became aware of the acute shortage of PPE globally and the need for a science-based approach to increasing the supply of PPE, especially face masks. UL’s Field Engineering and Government Affairs teams began a collaborative public/private effort to bring safe product to market and inform stakeholders on the requirements for approval by the CDC and National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Beginning with the White House Task Force for COVID-19 response and the NIOSH leadership, UL met the immediate market need for auditing and qualifying suppliers in China and India to provide face masks to meet the surge in demand. In conjunction, we provided advisory services to importers of face masks to address their concerns of product authentication and regulatory requirements.
UL’s Field Engineering and Consumer and Retail Services teams helped provide NIOSH with onsite audits in China and India for supplier qualifications considering the global travel restrictions. Our auditors were trained and positioned to gather documented evidence of their processes and management of design controls, raw material characteristics, test results, manufacturing, and shipping of personal protective masks in compliance with NIOSH requirements. These supplier audits helped ensure our healthcare facilities, local, and state agencies could procure safe, compliant, NIOSH approved masks.
Our partnership with the CDC NIOSH continues into 2021 to help fulfill our mission to work for a safer world through supporting both the private and public sectors in preventing the spread of COVID-19.
Essential Solutions for Businesses Responding to COVID-19
Refrigerated Vaccine Cold Chain Storage Solutions
Some promising new vaccines pose logistical challenges for manufacturers, transporters, warehousers and end users. Drug compound integrity must be preserved from manufacturing plant departure all the way through the cold chain to the intended patients. UL helps confirm that medical and vaccine storage equipment is safe to deploy and supports clients in solving critical health, safety, security, and interoperability challenges. Our product safety and performance testing helps to get refrigerated medical and vaccine solutions safely to market.
UL's Refrigeration Laboratory in Gurugram, India received World Health Organization (WHO) accreditation as a designated third-party testing laboratory for refrigeration equipment used for the storage of vaccines.
Sanitizers, Disinfectants and Other Chemical Products
COVID-19 spurred demand for hand sanitizers, disinfectants and other chemical cleaning products. At the same time, supply chain disruption made it challenging for manufacturers to source the required materials or find suitable alternatives to meet this demand. UL provides regulatory advisory services to help manufacturers understand the requirements and policies for products like hand sanitizers and many disinfecting products and helps ensure sourced materials continue to meet all applicable safety and performance requirements. We provide guidance on manufacturing requirements and support development of the proper Safety Data Sheets, the essential hazard communication documents required for workplaces producing and transporting these types of products.
Temporary Emergency Healthcare Facilities Services
Temporary healthcare facilities have become a vital tool in the fight against COVID-19, alleviating pressure on the burdened healthcare system. UL supports emergency preparedness for temporary healthcare facilities to aid in the safe operation of these critical facilities, including reviewing plans, performing on-site evaluations to assure compliance, conducting vital checks for critical safety issues and assessing the performance of building products and components.
Products with Ultraviolet Radiation Testing and Certification
UVC offers germicidal benefits with multiple in commercial, healthcare, and consumer settings. However, there are serious risks to UVC exposure, so safety precautions are essential. UL offers certification for most commercial and healthcare UVC devices, and specific types of consumer UVC devices to help ensure that products meet the safety requirements with proper labels to warn users of the dangers of exposure and photobiological assessment to address personal injury concerns for UVC.
In 2020, UL published a position paper on UVC germicidal devices to inform consumers of undue health risks from UVC-over-exposure from devices that do not provide proper containment of the UVC emissions.
Amplifying SDG impact
As the global safety science leader servicing the industries that define the world around us, we are able to meaningfully impact the United Nations’ SDGs through both our internal initiatives and our services. While we have aligned our corporate sustainability strategy to three goals — SDGs Nos. 3, 11 and 12 — our products and services help progress all of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, contributing to overall prosperity and amplifying our impact. Our dedicated sustainability solutions allow us to take a leading role in driving a global culture of sustainability, enabling our customers to achieve their ESG commitments and reporting needs and to improve their environmental and social impact.
UL offers many services that can help companies contribute, measure and report on their ESG commitments and SDG targets:
- Our ESG reporting and supply chain management tools provide our customers line of sight into their operations and help them report on their own sustainability journey. (Goal Nos. 9, 10, 11,12 and 17)
- Our work in greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), circular economy, waste diversion, labor and human rights issues, performance testing, environmental air quality and emissions, and the broad range of environmental, social and governance issues of concern to investors, directly progresses many of the SDGs. (Goal Nos. 3, 6, 9, 11, 12, 13 and 15)
- Our experience with product development and chemicals of concern, renewable energy and battery technologies, refurbished and remanufactured products is vital to protecting the health of the planet and its resources. (Goal Nos. 3, 7, 9, 11 and 12)
- At the same time, our digitization efforts, software systems and implementation services play an enabling role in advancing the SDGs alongside our customers. (Goal No. 17)
All of these capabilities and services help our customers enhance their sustainability efforts, amplifying our impact as we work together to safely progress society.
In shared pursuit of progress
As a company founded on sharing our scientific research and discoveries to make the world a safer place, our environmental and sustainability leaders contribute their expertise and passion to the important global dialogues surrounding sustainability. SDG No. 17 reveals the need for cross-industry, public, private and civil society partnerships to accomplish sustainability goals. We embrace this SDG through participating in collaborative research and demonstration projects and working directly with partners across the circularity value chain. We continue to increase our level of engagement and visibility within our key sustainability alliances to drive a sustainability culture and advance the best, science-based possibilities for our future. In 2020, UL’s sustainability experts contributed to the following organizations to share insights, progress innovations and collaborate on advancing the SDGs.
- Ellen Macarthur Foundation Circular Economy 100 (CE100)
UL is a member of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation CE100, collaborating with industry leaders to advance circular economy initiatives. One of the first projects UL worked on was a mass-balance approach to calculating recycled input generated through a chemical recycling process.
UL’s subject matter experts and sustainability leaders supported and contributed to Circularity20, GreenBiz’s circularity-themed conference, through:
- A GreenBiz webcast on the safety, performance and social impact considerations of recycled plastics
- Publishing a white paper on addressing the consequences of plastic waste and current challenges, safety considerations and efforts to reduce it: Assuring the quality and safety of recycled plastics
- Publishing an article on how to achieve circularity and safety in second life products
- Hosting a roundtable session on The UN Sustainable Development Goals, circularity and the ESG connection.
- Addressing considerations regarding material selection for circular products in Circular by Design: Material Selection for Circular Products
UL's subject matter experts are regular contributors at Greenbuild events, including Greenbuild 2020.
- World Green Building Council
UL was a global project partner of the WGBC’s “Plant a Sensor” campaign in 2020, bringing awareness to air quality. The “Plant a Sensor” campaign champions the worldwide rollout of air quality monitoring devices in and outside of buildings. UL’s thought leaders also helped launch their next roadmap focused on materials and human health.
In 2020, UL entered into a partnership with Rubicon, a software company supporting the waste and recycling industry, to advance UL and Rubicon’s shared circularity and sustainability aspirations to end waste, in all of its forms, while creating economic value. UL and Rubicon will work to help create the ecosystem needed to advance the circularity principle of retaining the value of resources for as long as possible and collaborate on market education and outreach efforts to continue to reduce dependency on landfills.
- United Nations Global Compact
UL hosted a webinar with the United Nations Global Compact on Unlocking Business Value with the SDGs, sharing how businesses are identifying material SDGs and pursuing alignment to positively impact people, planet and prosperity.
Energy Storage Association
At ESACon20, Barbara R. Guthrie, vice president of corporate sustainability, shared how safe energy storage is a key technology in enabling sustainable growth and ensuring the proliferation of renewable energy. UL is actively involved in developing local, state, national, and international codes and standards to ensure the safe deployment of energy storage systems in homes, businesses, and utilities. UL provides advisory services and independent engineering services to help our customers make informed decisions on project financing, siting, and technology. We also provide energy storage education to code authorities, developers, integrators, and OEMs through various channels.
Enabling customer impact
Our customers join us on a shared mission to work for a safer, more secure and sustainable world, entrusting us to empower meaningful and reportable impact to the industries we serve. We honor our collaborative customer relationships and the dedication to sustainable progress that we share. As we share our mission and support our customers’ unique sustainability journeys, we deepen our relationships, fortify our purpose and multiply our impact. In 2020, our customers made incredible progress on their sustainability commitments and demonstrated reportable impact on their ESG commitments and sustainability strategy. We celebrate their goals and outcomes.
Pottery Barn Kids
Pottery Barn Kids met its 2020 commitment to have 100% of its company-produced bedroom and nursery furniture meet UL GREENGUARD Gold Certification. Clean indoor air in nurseries and homes makes an impact on children’s health and well-being, especially as babies spend 90% of their time indoors and breathe faster than adults. The GREENGUARD Gold Certification includes health-based criteria for additional chemicals and also requires lower total volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions levels to assure that products are acceptable for use in environments such as schools and health care facilities.
HP, a leading provider of personal systems, printers and 3D printing solutions, achieved Recycled Content Validations from UL for five of their resins, which contain between 5-99% recycled content from ocean-bound plastic. HP is the first company to achieve validation from UL to the UL 2809 Environmental Claim Validation Procedure (ECVP) for Recycled Content Standard that now includes auditing of social responsibility procedures. UL’s claim validation further augments HP’s social responsibility drive to use ocean-bound plastics in their recycled content. HP’s ocean-bound plastic programs create new opportunities for economic advancement and education in local communities. In Haiti, HP’s partnership with the First Mile Coalition has helped create more than 1,100 income opportunities for adults in the country and has provided 150 children with quality education, food, and medical assistance.
UL supported BentallGreenOak in achieving Fitwel Viral Response (VR) certification for 17 office buildings across the US. “The VR module allows building owners, companies and commercial tenants to demonstrate compliance with strategies that mitigate viral transmission and build trust to create healthy and resilient environments for all occupants,” per Globe St.com. UL conducted various independent tests, including indoor air quality, water quality and janitorial efficacy and building re-occupancy investigations across BGO’s certified portfolio.
Irvine Company, a developer and manager of best-in-class real state, is the first to achieve the UL Verified Healthy Buildings Mark for Indoor Air for 25 million square feet of office space in more than 600 buildings in regions including Orange County, California, San Diego, Silicon Valley, Los Angeles and Chicago. “UL congratulates Irvine Company on being the first to earn UL’s Verified Healthy Buildings Mark for Indoor Air for their commercial office portfolio,” said Jennifer Scanlon, CEO, UL Inc. “Their bold action demonstrates a commitment to putting the health and well-being of building occupants first, and we’re pleased they are putting their trust in UL to deliver on that promise.”
Amazon recently announced its new Climate Pledge Friendly, sustainable products program, which highlights products verified by governmental agencies, non-profits and independent laboratories for transparency. Amazon said, "We focused on certifications that are reputable, transparent, and have a focus on preserving the natural world." UL's ECOLOGO® label is one of the certifications featured on the Amazon website.
Panasonic had the first e-bike tested and certified to the requirements of the new North American safety Standard, UL 2849, the Standard for Electrical Systems for eBikes. North American safety Standard, UL 2849, the Standard for Electrical Systems for eBikes. “UL has been involved with the trend of micromobility in recent years, creating electrical safety certification programs as new products come on the market,” said Ghislain Devouge, UL's vice president and general manager for Consumer Technology. "UL is excited to be part of the growth of e-bikes because it enables a fun alternative to traditional transportation, and it helps city planners reduce congestion creating sustainable, smart cities."
- Sustainability research and scientific expertise
UL is collaborating with OceanCycle, a leading social enterprise focusing on reducing ocean plastic pollution, on initiatives to align industry standards related to ocean-bound plastics, promote transparency of the standards, and develop the marketplace for ocean-bound plastics. UL and OceanCycle are leveraging their expertise in ocean plastics recycling and certification to strengthen the criteria around social impacts and third-party validation of recycled plastics. These efforts will result in increased manufacturer and purchaser confidence in the materials being used in products and additional credibility of the social impact of collected ocean-bound plastics.
Circular Economy for Renewable Energy Technologies
UL supported work by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to assess actions to promote circular economy practices for large-scale batteries and photovoltaic modules and participated in a global webinar to illustrate best practices for co-managing circularity and safety. These efforts are part of an ongoing initiative involving research institutions, government, industry, recyclers and others to promote the cleanest, most sustainable and safest energy infrastructure of the future.
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) research
UL continues work on a DOE three-year research grant to further understand the life of photovoltaic (PV) modules in collaboration with team members from NREL, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), academia and industry. This project will inform the PV industry on optimal ways to design and develop materials and PV modules, promoting more durable PV systems that exceed the current performance and financial aspects of solar power.
Cybersecurity for Distributed Energy Resources
UL collaborated with the U.S. Department of Energy, NREL, Sandia National Laboratory and others to improve approaches to deploying distributed energy resources (DERs) such as solar arrays and wind turbines to be more resistant to cyberattacks, reinforcing confidence in advanced renewable energy technologies that are less centralized.
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and UL Workshop
This biennial workshop co-hosted by NIST and UL brings together leading scientific experts in solar power from around the world to address leading edge ways to promote the best design, development, assessment and usage of solar power technologies.
Energy Storage System (ESS) Safety
Battery energy storage systems can be vulnerable to thermal runaway, where the electrochemical events inside the batteries can lead to catastrophic results including a large scale fire, explosion, sudden system failure, costly damage to equipment and personal injury. UL extended work on energy storage system safety by developing test methodologies for characterizing fire performance of energy storage systems. These have been published as the U.S. and Canadian National Standard UL 9540A, Test Method Evaluating Thermal Runaway Fire Propagation in Battery Energy Storage Systems. This approach has been required in codes to establish confidence in the safe integration of ESS into building, promoting more solar-plus-storage installations.
Biofuel research and requirements
UL collaborated with U.S. National Laboratories, automakers, the agricultural sector and industry stakeholders to proactively research, develop and publish requirements for new biofuels. In 2020, our work addressed additional safety requirements for renewable diesel dispensing equipment. Renewable diesel, like biodiesel, is made from renewable resources rather than fossil fuels. Displacing petroleum diesel with cleaner burning, renewable fuels reduces the environmental impact of transportation. Establishing requirements for biofuels helps lay the foundation for safety of fueling stations, support more rapid implementation of infrastructure and accelerate the ability to use more biofuels that burn cleaner than gasoline and produce lower levels of nitrous oxide (NOx) and other air pollutants.
UL has been performing research and engaging global technical leaders on establishing safety requirements for innovative wireless EV charging, which does not require a physical connection between the charger and the EV. In 2020, UL issued its first safety certifications for wireless EV charging and opened a state-of-the art EV and large battery testing facility in China. This facility provides a location to assess and verify the safety of large batteries for use in EVs and energy storage systems, promoting safe and sustainable global electrification continuing UL’s ongoing commitment to empower the safe development of clean, zero-emission transportation.
PV Rapid Shutdown/Hazard Control
As rooftop solar PV power becomes increasingly popular across the U.S. and the world, it presents challenges for the first responder community when carrying out their tactics in a building with rooftop PV. UL has been working with the first responder community, the solar industry, the U.S. National Laboratories and others to help ensure the safety of new technologies that allow first responders to rapidly shut down the distribution of electricity from a rooftop PV array, keeping them safe as they perform critical missions. UL’s efforts to address safe rapid shutdown/hazards control for PV culminated in the publication in 2020 of the U.S. and Canadian National Standard UL 3741 for Safety of Photovoltaic Hazard Control.
International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) Renewable Energy Scheme (IECRE) First Solar Certificate
The IECRE is a new conformity assessment scheme to promote easier global deployment of large scale wind, solar and marine power plants. UL has been deeply engaged in setting up the scheme since its inception, in all three sectors. In 2019, UL issued the first certificate under the solar sector for First Solar, a leading global manufacturer of innovative solar systems.
UL has actively supported the development of SolarAPP, an innovative new software tool enabling immediate permitting of residential rooftop solar installations. The software was developed by a coalition led by NREL and launched in 2020. This joint effort promotes affordable solar power. SolarAPP will help accelerate the transition of cities and communities to local, clean and safe energy to power homes and buildings.
Green Building Community
UL continued to help advance green building standards with contributing members on the US Green Building Council, the LEED Steering Committee, the Well Building Standard steering committee and the IAQ TAGASHRAE 189.1 International Green Construction Code committee.
- Testing, inspection and certification
Healthy indoor air
Healthy indoor air is critical to safe living and working environments. UL GREENGUARD certification helps manufacturers make and market products that have low chemical emissions and contribute to healthier indoor air. The emissions criteria for GREENGUARD Certification are among the most stringent in the world, recognized by more than 400 building programs, standards and specifications globally.
Responsible sourcing for supply chains
Responsible sourcing services help our customers analyze risks and prioritize interventions through supply chain mapping, field research tools and risk indices.
Verified Healthy Buildings Program
Demonstrates to building occupants that the owners are prioritizing the health, well-being and comfort of workers and guests with on-site testing of indoor environmental quality (IEQ) policies and procedures. With the COVID-19 pandemic raising awareness of the importance of IEQ, occupants are more concerned about safety than ever. As a result, a growing number of real estate providers and the companies that lease from them are prioritizing health and wellness in indoor spaces.
Renewables technical advisory services
Our comprehensive portfolio helps companies plan, design, finance, build, invest, operate, maintain and manage wind and solar. UL continues to lead the digitization of the renewables industry.
Software and services
Our software and services for regulatory compliance enable companies around the world to secure their supply chains and responsibly steward products with product intelligence to reduce risk, reach chemical compliance and promote materials. Chemical regulatory advisers, with a combined fluency in more than 30 languages, help companies meet changing regulations and increasingly robust product requirements.
UL acquired HOMER energy to offer digital services in microgrids, energy storage, hybrid energy systems, smart buildings and cities, and related domains. HOMER is the global benchmark for optimizing distributed generation systems, from grid-connected solar plus storage to remote microgrids, empowering people around the world with tools, services, and information to accelerate the adoption of renewable and distributed energy sources.
- Sustainability software solutions
UL’s digital applications help our customers set and achieve their sustainability goals and measure and report upon their progress. Our sustainability software solutions simplify ESG reporting, helping businesses capture and evaluate critical information across their organization and value chain. We’re on a shared mission with our customers, utilizing our software solutions internally to advance our sustainability initiatives.
As global focus is shifting to prioritize a low carbon economy, the demand for high-quality carbon emissions data is surging across countries and industries, driven by new regulatory requirements, pronounced business benefits and increased societal expectations for managing carbon emissions. UL’s Turbo Carbon™ and Turbo Buildings empowers carbon transparency and responsibility, enabling accurate reporting and contributing to the possibility of a net-zero future. Turbo Buildings facilitates ESG reporting against a leading ESG tool for that industry, GRESB, the Global ESG Benchmark for Real Assets.
Waste reduction is pivotal to sustainability and a fundamental tenant of circularity. UL’s Turbo Waste software enables companies to collect and analyze data on their own and vendors’ waste streams to optimize effective waste management, reporting and diversion from landfills. The Turbo Waste platform also supports the analysis of the environmental benefit of waste diversion activities in the form of reduced carbon impacts. This solution enables more companies to achieve certification by direct integration with UL 2799 Environmental Claim Validation Procedure for Zero Waste to Landfill and helps advance a circular economy.
Our award-winning platform enables brands to manage their GHG and other ESG data for internal decision making and external stakeholders. UL employs the 360 platform to gather insights into our own global facilities and laboratories in order to discover efficiencies and enact improvements. In 2020, 360 continued its Gold level CDP Software Partner status for the ninth consecutive year. This is the CDP’s highest ranking for an accredited software provider. Also, this year, UL became a licensee of SASB data for integration into the 360 platform, licensing all 77 of the SASB industry specific standards in our software solutions (360 Sustainability Essentials software and 360 Frameworks Module), allowing companies to easily track, manage and report on SASB data. SASB standards provide company-level ESG data that is comparable, consistent and financially material, enabling investors to make better investment and voting decisions, promoting positive economic impact.
UL SPOT® is our product database designed to support architects and designers, manufacturers, purchasers and retailers in finding sustainable products to meet green building requirements, purchasing guidelines and customer demands. This database encourages the adoption of safer, greener and healthier products, and raises awareness of the importance of healthy indoor environments.
- Thought leadership
Drawing on UL’s expertise, UL’s training and professional development solutions include instructor-led sessions, custom workshops and content development, on-demand e-learning courses and live webinars across a range of subjects.
In 2020, we launched Sustainability Talks™ to help our customers and stakeholders connect with leaders and subject matter experts on how to navigate risk, learn trends and apply sustainable practices for business longevity and integrity.
UL sustainability experts spoke with leaders in carbon measurement, minimization and mitigation.
SDG Readiness Assessment Tool
This year, we developed and shared our SDG Readiness Assessment tool, helping businesses measure their sustainability progress and identify the next steps in improving their impact.
Sustainability Continuing Education Courses
Our free courses are designed to educate professionals on sustainability, green design and indoor air quality. We offer continuing education units (CEUs) to support these learning opportunities for designers and help develop expertise in the community on important wellness and sustainable building topics. In 2020, we introduced the Health and Well-Being in Green Building course to support incorporating occupant wellness in green building projects.
On a shared mission
Our services and offerings help us and our customers progress the SDGs, working together for a safer, more secure and sustainable world. As we target our own sustainability initiatives, we also advance our customers’ contributions to sustainable progress through the unique offerings and solutions we bring to the market, underpinned by our founding mission, proliferated by our continued progress and developed by the passion of our science-based expertise.
We remain committed to a sustainable future for our people, our planet and prosperity. We remain committed to increasing our impact as we further embed sustainability strategies across our business. And, we remain committed to sharing our journey and our mission with our customers and stakeholders through continuous reporting and the integrity of the work we undertake every day.