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The City of Portland, Oregon

Sustainability at Work

Providing free tools and expertise to achieve your goals

Phone: 503-823-7037


Offices - Tips for Green Cleaning

There's no need for heavy-duty toxic cleaner for light cleaning around the office. Try using re-usable microfiber cloths, manual dust blowers, a simple handmade cleaner or a non-toxic store-bought green cleaner to get the job done with fewer risks to your health and environment.  

Use re-usable, ditch disposables

stack of microfiber clothsChoose reusable products over disposable products that can be used over and over again.

Microfiber cloths are a great option for cleaning computer screens or getting rid of dust – you only need water to make them work!

Need to wipe down the white boards? Use a cloth that can be rinsed out in the sink instead of throw-away wipes. 

Cut the canned air

manual dust blower

Canned air is bad news for the environment. Manual dust blowers are a quick and safe alternative for dusting off your desk and electronics. Plus, unlike canned air, they'll last forever, so you'll only have to buy them once.

Avoid antibacterial products

You don’t need antibacterial products to fight germs at work.

The FDA states, “there currently is no evidence that over-the-counter antibacterial soap products are any more effective at preventing illness than washing with plain soap and water” [1]. Additionally, the chemicals used in these products “may alter the way hormones work in the body,” and may make, “bacteria resistant to antibiotics [which] can have a significant impact on the effectiveness of medical treatments” [1].

Alternative: soap and water, green cleaners.

Use simple and effective handmade cleaners

handmade cleaners ingredients

Handmade cleaners are better for your health and the environment. 

Use handmade cleaners, made from everyday kitchen products, to clean your office kitchen, windows and mirrors, and to use as disinfectants and deodorizers.



Buy better store-bought cleaners

For store-bought cleaners, choose products with third party certification like Green Seal, UL ECOLOGO or UL GREENGUARD.

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  1. FDA Taking Closer Look at 'Antibacterial' Soap