Did you know…about the new European directive on ecodesign for energy-using products?

03/10/07

Not all energy-using products are designed with the environment in mind. This has led to the production of many goods that place a strain upon environmental resources and cause pollution. Today, a new European directive aims to help change this, with Bureau Veritas ready to assist the companies involved every step of the way.

 

Towards responsible product launches

 

The main objective of this new directive is to reduce the environmental impacts, such as water, air and soil pollution, of electrical and electronic products used in Europe. This covers the entire product lifecycle, from raw materials, design stage and manufacture through to typical life and recycling. The expected impact on company design processes and management systems will be huge. Manufacturers and importers of many products including air conditioning units, computers, washing machines and more will now be expected to assess environmental issues right from the start, and respond with intelligent design solutions.

 

Not all energy-using products are designed with the environment in mind. This has led to the production of many goods that place a strain upon environmental resources and cause pollution. Today, a new European directive aims to help change this, with Bureau Veritas ready to assist the companies involved every step of the way.

A 2008 deadline has been set to reach compliance for the first lot of priority products, which leaves many companies with very little time to adjust. There is also the added challenge of meeting these new regulations alongside existing Safety, EMC and Radio CE marking laws.

 

However, with the right preparation, the process should be a smooth one. Says Chris Baird, International Marketing Manager at Bureau Veritas Electrical and Electronic Product Services: “This directive is only a guiding framework, not a set of hard rules, helping companies to make their products more eco-friendly. This gives a certain flexibility and by doing the right research and taking a step-by-step approach, the transition can be made simple.” He adds: “As the leading consultant in the market on this directive, Bureau Veritas can help with advice and services at any or all stages of the process.”

 

Towards compliance, a choice of two options

 

Companies have a choice of two options to achieve compliance by the set deadline. The first is ‘Internal Design Control’. This is a technical documentation file recording all environmental actions taken, for example the number of eco-design requirements met. The alternative option is to manage your products that fall under the scope of the EuP Directive under a ‘Full Quality Assurance’ approach embracing process and quality controls. More importantly, all goods produced must be issued with a declaration of conformity and carry the CE marking stamp.  If the manufacturer is established outside the EU and has no authorized representative in the EU, the importer will be required to ensure compliance.

 

Towards a partnership between companies and consumers

 

Of course, responsibility for the environment does not only lie with corporations but also in the hands of the consumers that purchase and use their goods. Says Chris Baird: “This is why the directive also states that manufacturers must provide consumers with information on sustainable product use, along with recycling and disposal instructions. In this way, everyone is invited to make a difference.” He adds: “This new legislation is in the best interests of us all, and we are here to help make it as easy as possible for companies to make the positive shift.”

 

Bureau Veritas provides a range of training, consultancy, testing and certification services to help clients prepare for and comply with the EuP Directive. We can also provide our clients with an EuP Ecological Footprint Report which can be used to support the CE marking for your product(s). For more information, please contact us or download our EuP Bulletin

 

EuP: LET US KNOW HOW WE CAN HELP YOU: Will the EuP Directive affect your company? Do you need assistance with the implementing measures? And what type of help would you like? Please take a moment to complete this short survey and let us know how we can assist you. Take the survey now.

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