OneSource Office Interiors


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Call Us 503.227.3148 2950 NW Yeon Avenue,
Portland, OR 97210

Butterfly Effect

“As first described by meteorologist Edward Lorenz, the Butterfly Effect refers to the concept that the singular movement of a butterfly’s wings might ultimately cause a tornado to appear (or, alternately, prevent a tornado from appearing). The flapping wings represent a small change in the initial condition of the system, which causes a chain of events leading to large-scale phenomena. Had the butterfly not flapped its wings, the trajectory of effects might have been vastly different.
Simple Events can have complex results.”


Small steps and actions over time become a history of responsible achievement, and a record of the process of change. The following achievements reflect progress based on responsibility. Teknion acknowledges that its environmental strategies have a life of their own, starting with certification and moving toward self-directed accountability. Each person in the company has embraced these values and acts on them – day in, day out.


GreenWorks team established


Certified 3 product lines to the Environment Choice Program (Eco Logo)


  • GREENGUARD certification of products
  • Registered to ISO 14001


  • 16 manufacturing facilities and 1 administration office certified to ISO 14001
  • Aligned products with LEED
  • LEED Accredited Professionals at Teknion – 3


Certified first wood facility to FSC Chain of Custody


  • Remainder of product lines certified to Eco Logo
  • FSC Chain of Custody certification
  • CIPEC (Canadian Industry Program from Energy Conservation) Award
  • Joins EXCEL (Excellence in Corporate Environmental Leadership)
  • LEED Accredited Professionals at Teknion – 20


  • Accepted into the Environmental Leaders Program
  • MSWG Award (Multi-State Working Group) for Corporate Stewardship
  • Formal Introduction of DfE (Designs for the Environment)


  • Certification to the FSC Controlled Wood program (100 percent mixed sources)
  • Globe Foundation Award for Environmental Competitiveness
  • Gold RCO (Recycling Council of Ontario) Award
  • GREENGUARD Children and Schools Certification


  • Platinum RCO (Recycling Council of Ontario) Award
  • CoreNet Global Sustainable Leadership Awards for Design and Development
  • GSA Evergreen Award (U.S. Government)
  • LEED Accredited Professionals at Teknion – 35
  • LEED-CI awarded: San Francisco (Gold) & Ottawa (Silver) showrooms
  • ISO 14001 certification for Malaysia and Calgar facilities


  • CCME (Canadian Council Ministers of Environment) Pollution Prevention Award
  • Sustainability Recognition Award, University of Ottawa
  • LEED Accredited Professionals at Teknion – 66
  • LEED-CI awarded: Santa Monica (Gold) & Boston (Silver) showrooms


ISO 14001

Teknion was the first office furniture manufacturer to attain ISO 14001 certification for its manufacturing facilities and offices. They have recently recertified all of their facilities to the most current ISO 14001, version 2004. As a corporation, they continue to monitor and reduce their impacts in two fundamental areas – energy and waste.

Energy Management

The worldwide energy market is expected to present significant challenges to manufacturing. One of the many benefits of the ISO 14001 Environmental Management System is that it is dependent on monitoring and measuring, including real-time use of electricity monitoring that shows how electricity is used throughout the day. Analyzing this data has allowed Teknion to identify times to shut down selected machines as a means to reduce peak demand charges and make more informed decisions when acquiring new technology.


In 2003, Teknion strategically aligned to the standards set by LEED. As their understanding of LEED deepened, they aligned their processes, products and testing protocols to meet LEED submission requirements.

  • Energy and Atmosphere – Teknion offers user-controlled task lighting, which can be integrated with furniture and low wattage lamps.
  • Materials and Resources – Offering products with recycled content and reused resources shrinks demand for virgin materials and reduces waste; their packaging material is 100 percent recyclable; and they also offer an option to blanket-wrap or ship without skids.
  • Indoor Environmental Quality – All of Teknion’s major products are Greenguard-certified, while indirect ambient lighting, lower furniture height, glazed panels and mesh screens offer daylight and views.
  • Innovation and Design Process – Teknion supports and encourages the design integration required by a LEED Green Building project; they have many LEED Accredited Professionals on staff.




Greenguard is an indoor air quality certification program designed to quantify low-emitting materials and products. This includes establishing acceptable standards for interior products and testing protocols to improve indoor air quality for employees and customers.

Teknion was the first office furniture manufacturer to attain Greenguard certification for all major product lines. They continue to focus on product emission testing, ensuring that all products receive Greenguard low-emission certification. They do so by using water-based adhesives and stains, powder-coated finishes that emit no VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) and textiles with low VOCs.

Their Greenguard-certified products meet the required standard for low-emitting materials for LEED-IC Indoor Environmental Quality requirements.

Sustainable Textiles

Seventy percent of all Teknion standard fabrics include recycled content. In 2006, a total of 13 fabrics were launched – four panel and nine seating – all from 100 percent recycled polyester. This collection garnered Teknion a 2006 Gold from IIDEX/NeoCon Canada in the Sustainable Upholstery Collection, Textiles category. Incorporating recycled polyester results in less waste going to landfill, decreased demand for petroleum products and fewer impacts from the processing of petroleum into polyester.

Bio-based fabrics are both renewable and biodegradable at the end of their useful life. Bio-based fibers produce high-quality compost that lessens the need for traditional fertilizers and pesticides and is particularly attractive to the organic farming industry.

Teknion was one of the first manufacturers in the industry to introduce a PLA panel fabric, and the first to introduce Gabriel wool upholstery to North America. This wool, from Denmark, is produced from sheep raised in a 100 percent balanced and natural environment. Teknion was also the first manufacturer to introduce yarn-dyed Eco Intelligent Polyester seating fabrics. These fabrics from Victor Innovatex enhance the cradle-cradle design process.

“Small steps. Resonant change...

From the first GreenWorks team and their attainment of ISO 14001, Teknion has taken small steps that keep them moving forward in their commitment to sustainability.

They move forward, with each step, like the flap of the butterfly’s wings, producing a multitude of effects.”