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Chapter 2.0 About the Standard and How to Use It

The HPD Open Standard is the authoritative source for instructions on how to create an HPD – it contains definitions, rules, explanations, and other crucial information you need to ensure your HPD is accurate, correct, and meets the requirements you intend. It will also answer many of your questions if your product doesn’t seem to “fit” the data requirements. Before starting your HPD, you should become familiar with the information in the Standard. Even if you don’t remember all of the detailed instructions, you will be able to return to the Standard document and find what you need.

This section introduces you to the Standard, its organization, and its contents. This section does not duplicate the detailed information in the Standard and is not intended as a substitute for this information. Instead, this section presents an overview of the organization of the Standard to help you find the information you need. A complete Table of Contents for the Standard is included as an Appendix to this Guide.

Section 3 of this document provides guidance on the process for creating HPDs, using the HPD Builder tool and other methods. Use of the Builder is highly recommended since the task of manually entering all contents and screening them against HPD Priority Hazard Lists can be time-consuming and the possibility for error exists. Project teams understand that HPDs created outside the Builder require more scrutiny to check for errors.

2.1   What’s in the HPD Open Standard?

The HPD Open Standard contains five Chapters and several Appendices:

Chapter 1:  Overview of the Health Product Declaration Open Standard

This brief Chapter describes the purpose and scope of the Standard, and initial guidance for manufacturers on preparing an HPD. This section also introduces the Health Product Declaration Collaborative.

Chapter 2:  HPD Open Standard Format Section-By-Section Guidance

This Chapter presents the detailed requirements for all of the data fields in the HPD. Its organization is based on the HPD Format that includes six sections. Each of these sections is described below.

Section 1: Overview

This section summarizes information primarily for project teams and other users. It contains general information about the product and manufacturer, the HPD itself, and summaries of the more detailed information from the remaining sections. This includes:

  • Information on the inventory, including the inventory method and threshold(s) used for the inventory, whether residuals and impurities were considered, and whether all contents were characterized, screened, and identified.
  • A list of all contents in the inventory and identified hazards including GreenScreen scores, and inventory and screening notes.
  • Information on VOC content and certifications from other programs.
  • A preliminary indicator of whether the HPD is consistent with LEED v4 Material Ingredients credit requirements (optional).
  • Information on third-party verification and preparation.
  • Key dates, including screened, published, and expiration dates.
  • Location where the HPD is publicly available, generally the HPDC Public Repository.

Much of the information in Section 1 is drawn from other sections of the HPD. If you are using the HPD Builder tool to create your HPDs, much of this information will be automatically populated, based on responses in the other sections of the Standard.

Section 2: Content in Descending Order of Quantity

This section presents instructions for each data field in the inventory, including instructions that will answer many questions you might have. This includes:

  • For each Material (Nested Inventory method only) – name, percent, inventory threshold, residuals and impurities considered, residuals and impurities notes, and other material notes.
  • For each Substance – name, identifier (usually the CAS RN), percent, role, recycled content, hazards, GreenScreen score, nanomaterial, and substance notes.

You must select one of the three available inventory formats to create your inventory – Nested Materials Inventory with material-level thresholds, Nested Materials Inventory with product-level threshold, or Basic Inventory with product-level threshold.

Section 3:  Certifications and Compliance

This section presents instructions for required and optional reporting of VOC emissions, VOC content, and other certifications.

Section 4:  Accessories

This section presents instructions for required reporting of accessory products used in installation, maintenance, cleaning or operation of your product. If no accessories are required; this field should not be left blank.

Section 5:  General Notes

This section lists the information that is required or optional for this data field. Many entries can be reported here or under Material or Substance Notes.

Section 6:  References

This section includes instructions for reporting information on the manufacturer, including a new requirement that the contact name be the person attesting to the contents of the HPD. This section also includes a list of acronyms and abbreviations for reference.

Chapter 3:  Variations

This chapter provides very useful information for HPDs that are more complex or raise specific issues. It provides specific instructions for:

  • Listing multiple products in a single HPD
  • Including alternate materials or substances
  • Variable composition due to multiple suppliers
  • Products composed of combinations of parts
  • Special conditions for materials and substances. This section lists materials and substances that are not easily handled in the HPD and refers to the Emerging Best Practices section of the HPDC website for guidance.

Chapter 4:  Checklist for a Compliant HPD

This chapter summarizes the data elements required for the HPD to be considered compliant with the HPD Open Standard.

Chapter 5:  Glossary

The Glossary includes definitions for many terms used in the Standard. These definitions can help clarify exactly what the Standard refers to or requires. These definitions can contribute significantly to your understanding of the Standard and its requirements.


The Appendices for HPD Open Standard 2.1.1 are posted on the HPDC website.

The HPD Open Standard consists of a reporting Format and Instructions. When a manufacturer enters product data into the Format, it becomes the completed “HPD” – the document used by project teams.

2.2   How to Use the HPD Open Standard in Creating HPDs

The HPD Open Standard is a valuable resource for you as you create your HPDs and review other companies’ HPDs. It can work in conjunction with other resources such as this Guide, the HPD Builder screens, FAQs, and other tools on the HPDC website, and inquiries to the HPDC Support Desk. Frequently, the Standard can be the quickest way to find an answer to questions such as:

  • How long does an HPD remain in effect and when does it expire? See Section Expiry Date.
  • Does my data need to be exact or can I report ranges? See Section Percent (%).
  • Can I combine several products into one HPD? What are the requirements? See Section 3.1.
  • What if the composition of my product varies? See Sections 3.2 and 3.3.
  • Where should I publish my HPD to make sure it meets the LEED requirements for “publicly available”? See Section
  • What do I have to do if I update some of the data in my HPD? See Section

These are just examples, of course. You can always contact the Support Desk for personal responses to your questions. And, HPDC will be building a body of knowledge based on the experience of manufacturers who are creating HPDs for their products.

Key Concepts and Definitions

There are three important concepts underlying the HPD Open Standard that are key to HPDs:

  • Content inventory, including definitions of contents (materials and substances), thresholds, and content inventory methods
  • Descriptors of the completeness and type of reporting – characterized, screened, and identified
  • Hazard screening and GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals scores

These concepts are introduced in the following section.

Content inventory

Contents: Materials and Substances

The content inventory lists contents in the product as well as the thresholds established for their reporting, hazard screening information, and other relevant information. Within the HPD this information is summarized in Section 1, which is always the first page of an HPD. Details of the content inventory are reported in Section 2, which begins on page 2 of the HPD, and continues for the number of pages required to report the complete information.

Contents are reported in an HPD as they exist in the product “as delivered to the job site.”  A product’s contents can include the materials and itemized substances that comprise each material:

  • A “material” is a uniform solid, liquid, or gas. Materials are composed of one or more “substances.” For example, a coating or finish must be itemized as a distinct material, whether present on a supplied part or added by the manufacturer producing the HPD, whereas supplied materials that do not remain distinct in the finished product are not inventoried separately, e.g., solution dyes for fabrics.
  • A “substance” is matter that can be characterized by the entities that comprise it (molecules, atoms, etc.) and by its physical properties, such as density, refractive index, electric conductivity, melting point, etc.
  • The word “content” is used in the HPD Open Standard to refer to both materials and substances more generally, and to refer to materials and substances together.

Most products are composed of one or more materials, and materials are composed of one or more substances. Products can be composed of just a few materials or can be very complex, involving numerous materials and extensive supply chains.


“Threshold” is key to understanding the precision of reporting used in the HPD (and ability of the HPD to comply with LEED, Cradle to Cradle, and other programs). The threshold is the amount or concentration of a substance that must be present for that substance to be reported, at the specified threshold level.

A lower threshold means that smaller amounts of substances will be reportable and therefore disclosure will be more complete. There are several ways thresholds can be reported:

  • Parts per million (ppm) in which a threshold of 100 ppm is more stringent and requires reporting of substances present at lower concentrations than a threshold of 1,000 ppm, and hence is likely to lead to disclosure of more substances. Note that concentrations can also be expressed as percentages, with 100 ppm = 0.01%, 1,000 ppm = 0.1%, and 10,000 ppm = 1.0%.
  • Safety Data Sheet (SDS), based on the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals. The SDS requires content reporting at 1,000 ppm (0.1%) only for reproductive toxicants, carcinogens, and category 1 mutagens, and at 10,000 ppm (1%) for all other hazard categories. The SDS is required to report certain hazardous contents that will be handled by workers in factories and does not require reporting of all substances.
  • OSHA MSDS, the S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Material Safety Data Sheet, an older format that has been replaced by the SDS. It requires reporting carcinogens at 1,000 ppm and all other contents at 10,000 ppm. This option is being phased out of the HPD in 2019.

Thresholds can apply to the whole product or to each material in the product. If thresholds are reported for each material, the summary can include several different thresholds; for example, 1,000 ppm for some materials and 100 ppm for others.

Content inventory methods

The methods for creating a content inventory are based on how contents are categorized (for the entire product or for each of the materials that comprise the product) and how reporting thresholds are applied (a single threshold for the entire product or individual thresholds for each material). The creator of the HPD determines which of these content inventory reporting methods is used in a given HPD.

  • “Nested Materials” Inventory method. This method lists all materials in the product. Substances within each material that are above the threshold level specified are itemized under that material – hence, the inventory has a “nested” structure. If a substance appears in multiple materials, it will be listed multiple times in the inventory, appearing under each material where it is a There are two variations of this Inventory, based on the way the threshold is specified – at the material level or at the product level.
    • Nested Materials Inventory with material-level thresholds. In this method, thresholds are established for each material and these thresholds govern which substances must be listed under each material. If material-level thresholds are used for all materials in the product, they are indicated in the threshold data field for each material.
    • Nested Materials Inventory with a single product-level threshold. In this method, a single threshold is established for the product and is used to determine which substances are listed under the various materials. If a product-level threshold is used for a Nested Materials Inventory, all substances above the per product threshold must be reported under the appropriate materials. It is possible that a material can be listed with no substances nested under it. This could occur if all substances in the material are below the product-level threshold indicated.
  • “Basic” Inventory This method does not identify materials and creates a single list of all substances within the product based on a product-level threshold. A product-level threshold must be used.

Examples of HPDs created with these different methods are provided on the HPDC website.

Descriptors of the completeness and type of reporting

Characterized, Screened, Identified

This section summarizes the completeness and type of reporting in the HPD.

  • “Characterized” indicates whether the percent weight (quantity) and role or function are provided for all substances above the threshold
  • “Screened” indicates whether all substances above the threshold were screened for hazards using lists in the HPD Open Standard, and results are reported.
  • “Identified” indicates whether all substances above the threshold are reported by name and identifier (Chemical Abstract Service Registration Number – CAS RN).

In creating an HPD, it is possible to “Characterize” and “Screen” one or more substances but not “Identify” them. This reporting approach provides a way to withhold disclosure of proprietary or confidential information, but still report information about potential hazards associated with the product contents. Such reporting provides for compliance with certification requirements, such as for the LEED v4 Material Ingredients credit.

To accommodate use of Special Conditions, additional options are included as well, allowing “except Special Conditions” to be indicated.

Hazard Screening and Assessment

Pharos Chemical and Materials Library and GreenScreen for Safer Chemicals scores

An integral element of reporting about products with the HPD Open Standard is to include a hazard screening of the substances in the product and a listing of hazards that have been associated with these substances. This association information has been determined by many different, independent authoritative bodies, based on criteria that they have established using the results of epidemiological, toxicological, and scientific research studies.

The HPD Open Standard specifies which of the lists created by these authoritative bodies are to be considered in the hazard screening information reported in an HPD (see the Appendices of the HPD Open Standard for further information on the authoritative bodies and hazard lists.

It is important to understand that a screening result that indicates an association of a substance with a hazard does not provide information about the exposure to or risk of that hazard in the product. Determination of exposure and risk requires additional assessment of the product and its usage in buildings. Should you wish to include such information in your HPDs you can do so by including it in the Notes sections of the HPD.

In the HPD Open Standard, hazard information for reported substances consists of two categories of results:

Reporting of Hazard Warnings

This reporting is performed using the HPD Open Standard Priority Lists. These lists are primarily based on the GreenScreen for Safer Chemicals, a program of the nonprofit organization Clean Production Action, but also include lists from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the European Union, and other governmental organizations.

Within the HPD Builder, the hazard warning function is automated through the use of the Pharos Chemicals and Materials Library database, which is created and maintained by the Healthy Building Network. It is also possible for this screening to be performed if an HPD has been created using other automated tools.

Reporting of GreenScreen List Translator and Benchmark Assessment results

The GreenScreen approach facilitates comparative chemical hazard screening and assessment at the substance level. There are two types of GreenScreen results that can be reported in an HPD:

  • List Translator (LT) scores: these are produced using the GreenScreen List Translator method that screens against GreenScreen hazard lists. No additional assessment is performed.
  • Benchmark (BM) scores: these are produced through a Certified Full GreenScreen Method assessment that includes a toxicological review of all available information from scientific studies, hazard lists, and modeling or analogs. Benchmark scores represent a more comprehensive assessment than List Translator scores.

The HPD Hazard Screening Summary includes two summary indicators based on GreenScreen:

  • Number of GreenScreen BM-3/BM-4 Contents. This section reports on the total number of substances with lower hazards – Benchmark-3 (use but there’s still opportunity for improvement) or Benchmark-4 (prefer – safer chemical). This data is reported when there are publicly available Benchmark Assessments for the substance. If the manufacturer is aware of a privately available Benchmark Assessment for a substance reported in their HPD, they should contact the assessor to discuss the potential to include this information in their HPD reporting.
  • Contents’ highest concern GreenScreen Benchmark or List Translator Score. This section reports on the most hazardous GreenScreen List Translator or Benchmark score found in any of the substances in the