The development of sustainable processes has an important role to play in balancing social productivity requirements, protecting the environment and natural resources. Up to date, efforts to combat microbial contamination have focused on the use of chemical-based sanitation procedures, which may have various limitations, as testified by the persistence of contamination itself, by the growing antimicrobial resistance of microbes and by the chemical related pollution. The purpose of this paper is to present a comparative analysis of the use of conventional and sustainable cleaning products and processes in civilian environments. The sampling campaign is conducted in a sports hall in Turin, Italy. Each sample comes from a specific environment, surface, furniture and sanitary and is taken using RODAC contact plates and swabs with a neutralizing agent in order to standardize the result of the microbiological evaluation. Sampling occurred before and after traditional and sustainable cleaning procedures. The sustainable experimental design using ecological products in the cleaning procedures of the analyzed areas proved to be a relevant technique. From CAM (minimal environmental criteria) requirements, the sustainable protocol must give equal or better results than the traditional protocol from both microbiological and environmental (LCA) point of view. It can be concluded that the ecological experimental system meets this criterion and has demonstrated better performance both in antimicrobial activity and in environmental impact than the conventional system: all findings are in an acceptable state of sanitation, with no evidence of pathogenic micro-organisms specified in the guideline.
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