White Paper: Antimicrobial Building Products Should Be Avoided Whenever Possible

Antimicrobial building products marketed as “healthy” or beneficial to human health contain ingredients that may have adverse environmental or human health impacts, and alternative products should be considered whenever possible, according to a new white paper by global architecture and design firm Perkins+Will and the Healthy Building Network (HBN).

Healthy Environments: Understanding Antimicrobial Ingredients in Building Materials exposes the lack of scientific evidence supporting claims that so-called antimicrobial products like paints, kitchen countertops, door handles, flooring, and other interior finishes help ward off communicable diseases. In fact, the report highlights a growing body of research suggesting potential negative impacts of antimicrobials on both the body and the environment. Potential impacts include the possible proliferation of “super bugs” caused by microbial resistance, contamination of aquatic ecosystems, and potential exposure to known or suspected carcinogens like formaldehyde.

Click here to read the full white paper.