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Document L:2022:144:FULL

Official Journal of the European Union, L 144, 23 May 2022


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ISSN 1977-0677

Official Journal

of the European Union

L 144

European flag  

English edition

Legislation

Volume 65
23 May 2022


Contents

 

Corrigenda

page

 

*

Corrigendum to Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279 of 15 December 2021 on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations ( OJ L 471, 30.12.2021 )

1

EN

Acts whose titles are printed in light type are those relating to day-to-day management of agricultural matters, and are generally valid for a limited period.

The titles of all other Acts are printed in bold type and preceded by an asterisk.


Corrigenda

23.5.2022   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

L 144/1


Corrigendum to Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279 of 15 December 2021 on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations

( Official Journal of the European Union L 471 of 30 December 2021 )

On page 1, the text of Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279 is replaced as follows:


COMMISSION RECOMMENDATION (EU) 2021/2279

of 15 December 2021

on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations

THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,

Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,

Whereas:

(1)

Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.

(2)

The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter ‘Environmental Footprint methods’) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.

(3)

In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU (1) to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.

(4)

The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.

(5)

In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.

(6)

The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (‘act where it matters’); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.

(7)

The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on ‘Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular Economy’ (2). The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.

(8)

The Council Conclusions of October 2019 (3) welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.

(9)

The European Green Deal (4) aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of ‘green washing’, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.

(10)

In its Communication ‘A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive Europe’ (5), the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.

(11)

The Communication on a ‘New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recovery’ (6) indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.

(12)

The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.

(13)

The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy Regulation (7), the Sustainable Batteries Initiative (8) and the Green Consumption Pledge (9).

(14)

In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.

(15)

SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.

(16)

As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.

(17)

As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.

(18)

While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.

(19)

This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,

HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:

1.   PURPOSE AND SCOPE

1.1.

This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.

1.2.

This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.

1.3.

This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.

2.   DEFINITIONS

For the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:

(a)

Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter ‘PEF’) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.

(b)

Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter ‘OEF’) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.

(c)

Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.

(d)

Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.

(e)

Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter ‘PEFCRs’): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.

(f)

Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter ‘OEFSRs’): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.

(g)

Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.

(h)

Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.

(i)

Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.

(j)

Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.

(k)

Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.

(l)

Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.

3.   USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIES

Member States should:

3.1.

Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.

3.2.

Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.

3.3.

Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..

3.4.

Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.

3.5.

Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.

3.6.

Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.

3.7.

Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.

4.   USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONS

Companies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:

4.1.

Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.

4.2.

Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.

4.3.

Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.

Industrial associations should:

4.4.

Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.

4.5.

Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.

4.6.

Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.

4.7.

Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.

5.   USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE

5.1

Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.

6.   USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITY

Members of the financial community should, if appropriate:

6.1.

Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.

6.2.

Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.

6.3.

Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.

7.   VERIFICATION

7.1.

If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.

8.   REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION

8.1.

Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:

(a)

how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);

(b)

number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;

(c)

incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;

(d)

initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;

(e)

assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;

(f)

eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.

9.   REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATION

Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.

Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.

For the Commission

Virginijus SINKEVIČIUS

Member of the Commission


(1)  Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1).

(2)  SWD(2019) 91final.

(3)  https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf

(4)  COM(2019) 640 final.

(5)  COM(2020) 98 final.

(6)  COM(2020) 696 final.

(7)  Regulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13).

(8)  COM(2020) 798 final.

(9)  https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf


ANNEX I

Product Environmental Footprint Method

Abbreviations 10
Definitions 12
Relationship to other methods and standards 22

1.

Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (PEFCRs) 23

1.1.

Approach and examples for potential applications 23

2.

General considerations for Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) studies 24

2.1.

How to use this method 24

2.2.

Principles for Product Environmental Footprint studies 24

2.3.

Phases of a Product Environmental Footprint study 25

3.

Defining the goal(s) and scope of the Product Environmental Footprint study 26

3.1.

Goal definition 26

3.2.

Scope Definition 27

3.2.1

Functional unit and reference flow 27

3.2.2.

System boundary 28

3.2.3.

Environmental Footprint impact categories 28

3.2.4.

Additional information to be included in the PEF 30

3.2.5.

Assumptions/ limitations 32

4.

Life Cycle Inventory 32

4.1.

Screening step 33

4.2.

Life cycle stages 33

4.2.1.

Raw material acquisition and pre-processing 33

4.2.2.

Manufacturing 34

4.2.3.

Distribution stage 34

4.2.4.

Use stage 34

4.2.5.

End of life (including product recovery and recycling) 35

4.3.

Nomenclature for the life cycle inventory 36

4.4.

Modelling requirements 36

4.4.1

Agricultural production 36

4.4.2.

Electricity use 40

4.4.3.

Transport and logistics 44

4.4.4.

Capital goods – infrastructure and equipment 48

4.4.5.

Storage at distribution centre or retail 48

4.4.6.

Sampling procedure 49

4.4.7.

Modelling requirements for the use stage 52

4.4.8.

Recycled content and end of life modelling 54

4.4.9.

Extended product lifetime 63

4.4.10

Greenhouse gases emissions and removals 66

4.4.11

Offsets 69

4.5

Handling multi-functional processes 69

4.5.1

Allocation in animal husbandry 70

4.6

Data collection requirements and quality requirements 78

4.6.1

Company-specific data 78

4.6.2

Secondary data 79

4.6.3

Datasets to be used 79

4.6.4

Cut-off 79

4.6.5

Data quality requirements 80

5.

Environmental Footprint impact assessment 87

5.1.

Classification and characterisation 87

5.1.1

Classification 87

5.1.2

Characterisation 87

5.2.

Normalisation and weighting 88

5.2.1

Normalisation of Environmental Footprint impact assessment results 88

5.2.2

Weighting of Environmental Footprint impact assessment results 88

6.

Interpretation of Product Environmental Footprint results 88

6.1.

Introduction 88

6.2.

Assessment of the robustness of the Product Environmental Footprint model 88

6.3.

Identification of hotspots: most relevant impact categories, life cycle stages, processes and elementary flows 89

6.3.1

Procedure to identify the most relevant impact categories 89

6.3.2

Procedure to identify the most relevant life cycle stages 89

6.3.3

Procedure to identify the most relevant processes 90

6.3.4

Procedure to identify the most relevant elementary flows 90

6.3.5

Dealing with negative numbers 91

6.3.6

Summary of requirements 91

6.3.7

Example 91

6.4.

Conclusions and recommendations 94

7.

Product Environmental Footprint reports 94

7.1.

Introduction 94

7.1.1.

Summary 94

7.1.2.

Aggregated EF compliant dataset 94

7.1.3.

Main report 94

7.1.4.

Validation statement 95

7.1.5.

Annexes 95

7.1.6.

Confidential report 95

8.

Verification and validation of PEF studies, reports, and communication vehicles 95

8.1.

Defining the scope of the verification 95

8.2.

Verification procedure 96

8.3.

Verifier(s) 96

8.3.1.

Minimum requirements for verifier(s) 97

8.3.2.

Role of the lead verifier in the verification team 98

8.4.

Verification and validation requirements 98

8.4.1

Minimum requirements for the verification and validation of the PEF study 99

8.4.2

Verification and validation techniques 100

8.4.3

Data confidentiality 100

8.5

Outputs of the verification/ validation process 101

8.5.1

Content of the verification and validation report 101

8.5.2

Content of the validation statement 101

8.5.3

Validity of the verification and validation report and the validation statement 102
References 103
List of figures 108
List of tables 109

Abbreviations

ADEME

Agence de l'Environnement et de la Maîtrise de l'Energie

AF

allocation factor

AR

allocation ratio

B2B

business to business

B2C

business to consumer

BoC

bill of components

BoM

bill of materials

BP

best practice

BSI

British Standards Institution

CF

characterization factor

CFCs

chlorofluorocarbons

CFF

Circular Footprint Formula

CPA

Classification of Products by Activity

DC

distribution centre

DMI

dry matter intake

DNM

Data Needs Matrix

DQR

Data Quality Rating

EC

European Commission

EF

environmental footprint

EI

environmental impact

EMAS

Eco-Management and Audit Scheme

EMS

Environmental Management Systems

EoL

end of life

EPD

Environmental Product Declaration

FU

functional unit

GE

gross energy intake

GHG

greenhouse gas

GR

geographical representativeness

GRI

Global Reporting Initiative

GWP

global warming potential

ILCD

International Reference Life Cycle Data System

ILCD-EL

International Reference Life Cycle Data System – Entry Level

IPCC

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

ISIC

international standard industrial classification

ISO

International Organisation for Standardisation

IUCN

International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

JRC

Joint Research Centre

LCA

life cycle assessment

LCDN

Life Cycle Data Network

LCI

life cycle inventory

LCIA

life cycle impact assessment

LCT

life cycle thinking

LT

lifetime

NACE

Nomenclature Générale des Activités Economiques dans les Communautés Européennes

NDA

non-disclosure agreement

NGO

non-governmental organisation

NMVOC

non-methane volatile compounds

OEFSR

organization environmental footprint sectorial rules

P

precision

PAS

publicly available specification

PCR

product category rules

PEF

product environmental footprint

PEFCR

product environmental footprint category rules

PEF-RP

PEF study of the representative product

RF

reference flow

RP

representative product

SB

system boundary

SMRS

sustainability measurement & reporting system

SS

supporting study

TeR

technological representativeness

TiR

time representativeness

TS

Technical Secretariat

UNEP

United Nations Environment Programme

UUID

Universally Unique Identifier

WBCSD

World Business Council for Sustainable Development

WRI

World Resources Institute

Terminology: shall, should, may

This Annex I uses precise terminology to indicate the requirements, the recommendations and options that companies may choose.

The term “shall” indicates what is required for a PEF study to be compliant with this method.

The term “should” indicates a recommendation rather than a requirement. Any deviation from a “should” recommendation must be justified by the party conducting the study and made transparent.

The term “may” indicates an option that is permissible

Definitions

Activity data - information which is associated with processes while modelling Life Cycle Inventories (LCI). The aggregated LCI results of the process chains, which represent the activities of a process, are each multiplied by the corresponding activity data (1) and then combined to derive the environmental footprint associated with that process.

Examples of activity data include quantity of kilowatt-hours of electricity used, quantity of fuel used, output of a process (e.g. waste), number of hours equipment is operated, distance travelled, floor area of a building, etc.

Synonym of ‘non-elementary flow’.

Acidification – EF impact category that addresses impacts due to acidifying substances in the environment. Emissions of NOx, NH3 and SOx lead to releases of hydrogen ions (H+) when the gases are mineralised. The protons contribute to the acidification of soils and water when they are released in areas where the buffering capacity is low, resulting in forest decline and lake acidification.

Additional environmental information – environmental information outside the EF impact categories that is calculated and communicated alongside PEF results.

Additional technical information – non-environmental information that is calculated and communicated alongside PEF results.

Aggregated dataset - complete or partial life cycle of a product system that – next to the elementary flows (and possibly not relevant amounts of waste flows and radioactive wastes) – itemises only the product(s) of the process as reference flow(s) in the input/output list, but no other goods or services.

Aggregated datasets are also called ‘LCI results’ datasets. The aggregated dataset may have been aggregated horizontally and/or vertically.

Allocation – an approach to solving multi-functionality problems. It refers to ‘partitioning the input or output flows of a process or a product system between the product system under study and one or more other product systems‘.

Application specific – generic aspect of the specific application in which a material is used. For example, the average recycling rate of PET in bottles.

Attributional – process-based modelling intended to provide a static representation of average conditions, excluding market-mediated effects.

Average Data – production-weighted average of specific data.

Background processes – refers to those processes in the product life cycle for which no direct access to information is possible. For example, most of the upstream life-cycle processes and generally all processes further downstream will be considered part of the background processes.

Benchmark – a standard or point of reference against which any comparison may be made. In the context of PEF, the term ‘benchmark’ refers to the average environmental performance of the representative product sold in the EU market.

Bill of materials – a bill of materials or product structure (sometimes bill of material, BOM or associated list) is a list of the raw materials, sub-assemblies, intermediate assemblies, sub-components, parts and the quantities of each needed to manufacture the product in scope of the PEF study. In some sectors it is equivalent to the bill of components.

Business to business (B2B) – describes transactions between businesses, such as between a manufacturer and a wholesaler, or between a wholesaler and a retailer.

Business to consumers (B2C) – describes transactions between business and consumers, such as between retailers and consumers.

Characterisation – calculation of the magnitude of the contribution of each classified input/output to their respective EF impact categories, and aggregation of contributions within each category.

This requires a linear multiplication of the inventory data with characterisation factors for each substance and EF impact category of concern. For example, with respect to the EF impact category ‘climate change‘, the reference substance is CO2 and the reference unit is kg CO2-equivalents.

Characterisation factor – factor derived from a characterisation model which is applied to convert an assigned life cycle inventory result to the common unit of the EF impact category indicator.

Classification – assigning the material/energy inputs and outputs tabulated in the life cycle inventory to EF impact categories, according to each substance’s potential to contribute to each of the EF impact categories considered.

Climate change – EF impact category considering all inputs and outputs that result in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The consequences include increased average global temperatures and sudden regional climatic changes.

Co-function - any of two or more functions resulting from the same unit process or product system.

Commissioner of the EF study - organisation (or group of organisations), such as a commercial company or non-profit organisation, that finances the EF study in accordance with the PEF method and the relevant PEFCR, if available.

Company-specific data – refers to directly measured or collected data from one or more facilities (site-specific data) that are representative for the activities of the company (company is used as synonym of organisation). It is synonymous to ‘primary data‘. To determine the level of representativeness a sampling procedure may be applied.

Company-specific dataset – refers to a dataset (disaggregated or aggregated) compiled with company-specific data. In most cases the activity data is company-specific while the underlying sub-processes are datasets derived from background databases.

Comparative assertion – an environmental claim regarding the superiority or equivalence of one product versus a competing product that performs the same function (including the benchmark of the product category).

Comparison – a comparison, not including a comparative assertion, (graphic or otherwise) of two or more products based on the results of a PEF study and supporting PEFCRs.

Consumer – an individual member of the general public purchasing or using goods, property or services for private purposes.

Co-product – any of two or more products resulting from the same unit process or product system.

Cradle to gate – a partial product supply chain, from the extraction of raw materials (cradle) up to the manufacturer’s ‘gate‘. The distribution, storage, use stage and end of life stages of the supply chain are omitted.

Cradle to grave – a product’s life cycle that includes raw material extraction, processing, distribution, storage, use, and disposal or recycling stages. All relevant inputs and outputs are considered for all of the stages of the life cycle.

Critical review – process intended to ensure consistency between a PEFCR and the principles and requirements of the PEF method.

Data quality – characteristics of data that relate to their ability to satisfy stated requirements. Data quality covers various aspects, such as technological, geographical and time-related representativeness, as well as completeness and precision of the inventory data.

Data quality rating (DQR) - semi-quantitative assessment of the quality criteria of a dataset, based on technological representativeness, geographical representativeness, time-related representativeness, and precision. The data quality shall be considered as the quality of the dataset as documented.

Delayed emissions – emissions that are released over time, e.g. through long use or final disposal stages, versus a single emission at time t.

Direct elementary flows (also named elementary flows) – all output emissions and input resource uses that arise directly in the context of a process. Examples are emissions from a chemical process, or fugitive emissions from a boiler directly onsite.

Direct land use change (dLUC) – the transformation from one land use type into another, which takes place in a unique land area and does not lead to a change in another system.

Directly attributable – refers to a process, activity or impact occurring within the defined system boundary.

Disaggregation – the process that breaks down an aggregated dataset into smaller unit process datasets (horizontal or vertical). The disaggregation may help make data more specific. The process of disaggregation should never compromise or threaten to compromise the quality and consistency of the original aggregated dataset.

Downstream – occurring along a product supply chain after the point of referral.

Ecotoxicity, freshwater – EF impact category that addresses the toxic impacts on an ecosystem, which damage individual species and change the structure and function of the ecosystem. Ecotoxicity is a result of a variety of different toxicological mechanisms caused by the release of substances with a direct effect on the health of the ecosystem.

EF communication vehicles – all the possible ways that may be used to communicate the results of the EF study to the stakeholders (e.g. labels, environmental product declarations, green claims, websites, infographics, etc.).

EF-compliant dataset – dataset developed in compliance with the EF requirements, regularly updated by DG JRC (2).

Electricity tracking (3) – the process of assigning electricity generation attributes to electricity consumption.

Elementary flows – in the life cycle inventory, elementary flows include ‘material or energy entering the system being studied that has been drawn from the environment without previous human transformation, or material or energy leaving the system being studied that is released into the environment without subsequent human transformation‘.

Elementary flows include, for example, resources taken from nature or emissions into air, water, soil that are directly linked to the characterisation factors of the EF impact categories.

Environmental aspect – element of an organisation’s activities or products or services that interacts or can interact with the environment.

Environmental footprint (EF) impact assessment – phase of the PEF analysis aimed at understanding and evaluating the magnitude and significance of the potential environmental impacts for a product system throughout the life cycle of the product. The impact assessment methods provide impact characterisation factors for elementary flows, to aggregate the impact so as to obtain a limited number of midpoint indicators.

Environmental footprint (EF) impact assessment method – protocol for converting life cycle inventory data into quantitative contributions to an environmental impact of concern.

Environmental footprint (EF) impact category – class of resource use or environmental impact to which the life cycle inventory data are related.

Environmental footprint (EF) impact category indicator – quantifiable representation of an EF impact category.

Environmental impact – any change to the environment, whether adverse or beneficial, that wholly or partially results from an organisation’s activities, products or services.

Environmental mechanism – system of physical, chemical and biological processes for a given EF impact category linking the life cycle inventory results to EF category indicators.

Eutrophication – EF impact category related to nutrients (mainly nitrogen and phosphorus) from sewage outfalls and fertilised farmland that accelerate the growth of algae and other vegetation in water.

The degradation of organic material consumes oxygen, resulting in oxygen deficiency and, in some cases, fish death. Eutrophication translates the quantity of substances emitted into a common measure, expressed as the oxygen required for the degradation of dead biomass.

To assess the impacts due to eutrophication, three EF impact categories are used: eutrophication, terrestrial; eutrophication, freshwater; eutrophication, marine.

External communication – communication to any interested party other than the commissioner or the practitioner of the study.

Extrapolated data – data from a given process that is used to represent a similar process for which data is not available, on the assumption that it is reasonably representative.

Flow diagram – schematic representation of the flows occurring during one or more process stages within the life cycle of the product being assessed.

Foreground elementary flows - direct elementary flows (emissions and resources) for which access to primary data (or company-specific information) is available.

Foreground processes – those processes in the product life cycle for which direct access to information is available. For example, the producer’s site and other processes operated by the producer or its contractors (e.g. goods transport, head-office services, etc.).

Functional unit – defines the qualitative and quantitative aspects of the function(s) and/or service(s) provided by the product being evaluated. The functional unit definition answers the questions ‘what?’, ‘how much?’, ‘how well?’, and ‘for how long?’.

Gate to gate – a partial product supply chain that includes only the processes carried out on a product within a specific organisation or site.

Gate to grave – a partial product supply chain that includes only the distribution, storage, use, and disposal or recycling stages.

Global warming potential (GWP) – An index measuring the radiative forcing of a unit mass of a given substance accumulated over a chosen time horizon. It is expressed in terms of a reference substance (for example, CO2-equivalent units) and specified time horizon (e.g. GWP 20, GWP 100, GWP 500 – for 20, 100 and 500 years respectively).

By combining information on both radiative forcing (the energy flux caused by emission of the substance) and on the time it remains in the atmosphere, GWP gives a measure of a substance’s capacity to influence the global average surface-air temperature and therefore subsequently influence various climate parameters and their effects, such as storm frequency and intensity, rainfall intensity and frequency of flooding, etc.

Horizontal averaging – the action of aggregating multiple unit process datasets or aggregated process datasets in which each provides the same reference flow, to create a new process dataset.

Human toxicity – cancer – EF impact category that accounts for adverse health effects on human beings caused by the intake of toxic substances through inhalation of air, food/water ingestion, penetration through the skin – insofar as they are related to cancer.

Human toxicity - non cancer – EF impact category that accounts for the adverse health effects on human beings caused by the intake of toxic substances through inhalation of air, food/water ingestion, penetration through the skin – insofar as they are related to non-cancer effects that are not caused by particulate matter/respiratory inorganics or ionising radiation.

Independent external expert – competent person, not employed in a full-time or part-time role by the commissioner of the EF study or the user of the EF method, and not involved in defining the scope or conducting the EF study.

Indirect land use change (iLUC) – this occurs when a demand for a certain land use leads to changes, outside the system boundary, i.e. in other land use types. These indirect effects may be mainly assessed by means of economic modelling of the demand for land or by modelling the relocation of activities on a global scale.

Input flows – product, material or energy flow that enters a unit process. Products and materials include raw materials, intermediate products and co-products.

Intermediate product – output form of a unit process that in turn is input to other unit processes which require further transformation within the system. An intermediate product is a product that requires further processing before it is saleable to the final consumer.

Ionising radiation, human health – EF impact category that accounts for the adverse health effects on human health caused by radioactive releases.

Land use – EF impact category related to use (occupation) and conversion (transformation) of land area by activities such as agriculture, forestry, roads, housing, mining, etc.

Land occupation considers the effects of the land use, the amount of area involved and the duration of its occupation (changes in soil quality multiplied by area and duration). Land transformation considers the extent of changes in land properties and the area affected (changes in soil quality multiplied by the area).

Lead verifier – person taking part in a verification team with additional responsibilities, compared to the other verifiers in the team.

Life cycle – consecutive and interlinked stages of a product system, from raw material acquisition or generation from natural resources to final disposal.

Life cycle approach – takes into consideration the spectrum of resource flows and environmental interventions associated with a product from a supply-chain perspective, including all stages from raw material acquisition through processing, distribution, use, and end of life processes, and all relevant related environmental impacts (instead of focusing on a single issue).

Life cycle assessment (LCA) – compilation and evaluation of the inputs, outputs and the potential environmental impacts of a product system throughout its life cycle.

Life cycle impact assessment (LCIA) – phase of life cycle assessment that aims to understand and evaluate the magnitude and significance of the potential environmental impacts for a system throughout the life cycle.

The LCIA methods used provide impact characterisation factors for elementary flows to aggregate the impact, to obtain a limited number of midpoint and/or damage indicators.

Life cycle inventory (LCI) - the combined set of exchanges of elementary, waste and product flows in a LCI dataset.

Life cycle inventory (LCI) dataset - a document or file with life cycle information of a specified product or other reference (e.g., site, process), covering descriptive metadata and quantitative life cycle inventory. A LCI dataset could be a unit process dataset, partially aggregated, or an aggregated dataset.

Loading rate – ratio of actual load to the full load or capacity (e.g. mass or volume) that a vehicle carries per trip.

Material-specific – a generic aspect of a material. For example, the recycling rate of polyethylene terephthalate (PET).

Multi-functionality – if a process or facility provides more than one function, i.e. it delivers several goods and/or services (‘co-products’), then it is ‘multifunctional‘. In these situations, all inputs and emissions linked to the process will be partitioned between the product of interest and the other co-products, according to clearly stated procedures.

Non-elementary (or complex) flows – in the life cycle inventory, non-elementary flows include all the inputs (e.g. electricity, materials, transport processes) and outputs (e.g. waste, by-products) in a system that need further modelling efforts to be transformed into elementary flows.

Synonym of 'activity data'.

Normalisation – after the characterisation step, normalisation is the step in which the life cycle impact assessment results are divided by normalisation factors that represent the overall inventory of a reference unit (e.g. a whole country or an average citizen).

Normalised life cycle impact assessment results express the relative shares of the impacts of the analysed system, in terms of the total contributions to each impact category per reference unit.

Displaying the normalised life cycle impact assessment results for the different impact topics next to each other shows which impact categories are affected most and least by the analysed system.

Normalised life cycle impact assessment results reflect only the contribution of the analysed system to the total impact potential, not the severity/relevance of the respective total impact. Normalised results are dimensionless, but not additive.

Organisation Environmental Footprint Sectorial Rules (OEFSRs) - sector specific, life-cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector.

OEFSRs help to shift the focus of the OEF study towards those aspects and parameters that matter the most, and hence contribute to increased relevance, reproducibility and consistency of the results by reducing costs versus a study based on the comprehensive requirements of the OEF method. Only the OEFSRs developed by or in cooperation with the European Commission, or adopted by the European Commission or as EU acts are recognised as in line with this method.

Output flows – product, material or energy flow that leaves a unit process. Products and materials include raw materials, intermediate products, co-products and releases. Output flows are also considered to cover elementary flows.

Ozone depletion – EF impact category that accounts for the degradation of stratospheric ozone due to emissions of ozone-depleting substances, for example long-lived chlorine and bromine containing gases (e.g. chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), halons).

Partially disaggregated dataset - a dataset with an LCI that contains elementary flows and activity data, and that yields a complete aggregated LCI data set when combined with its complementing underlying datasets.

Partially disaggregated dataset at level-1 - a partially disaggregated dataset at level-1 contains elementary flows and activity data for one level down in the supply chain, while all complementing underlying datasets are in their aggregated form.

Figure 1

Example of dataset partially disaggregated at Level-1

Image 1L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

Particulate matter – EF impact category that accounts for the adverse effects on human health caused by emissions of particulate matter (PM) and its precursors (NOx, SOx, NH3).

PEFCR supporting study – PEF study based on a draft PEFCR. It is used to confirm the decisions taken in the draft PEFCR before the final PEFCR is released.

PEF profile – The quantified results of a PEF study. It includes the quantification of the impacts for the various impact categories and the additional environmental information considered necessary to report.

PEF report – Document that summarises the results of the PEF study.

PEF study of the representative product (PEF-RP) – PEF study carried out on the representative product(s) and intended to identify the most relevant life cycle stages, processes, elementary flows, impact categories and any other major requirements needed for to define the benchmark for the product category/ sub-categories in scope of the PEFCR.

PEF study – term used to identify all the actions needed to calculate the PEF results. It includes the modelling, data collection and analysis of the results. PEF study results are the basis for drafting PEF reports.

Photochemical ozone formation – EF impact category that accounts for the formation of ozone at the ground level of the troposphere caused by photochemical oxidation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and carbon monoxide (CO) in the presence of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and sunlight.

High concentrations of ground-level tropospheric ozone damage vegetation, human respiratory tracts and manmade materials, by reacting with organic materials.

Population - any finite or infinite aggregation of individuals, not necessarily animate, subject to a statistical study.

Primary data – data from specific processes within the supply chain of the user of the PEF method or user of the PEFCR.

Such data may take the form of activity data, or foreground elementary flows (life cycle inventory). Primary data are site-specific, company-specific (if multiple sites for the same product) or supply chain specific.

Primary data may be obtained through meter readings, purchase records, utility bills, engineering models, direct monitoring, material/product balances, stoichiometry, or other methods for obtaining data from specific processes in the value chain of the user of the PEF method or user of the PEFCR.

In this method, primary data is a synonym of ‘company-specific data’ or ‘supply chain specific data’.

Product – any good or service.

Product category – group of products (or services) that can fulfil equivalent functions.

Product category rules (PCRs) – set of specific rules, requirements and guidelines for developing Type III environmental declarations for one or more product categories.

Product environmental footprint category rules (PEFCRs) – product category-specific, life cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification for a specific product category.

PEFCRs help to shift the focus of the PEF study towards those aspects and parameters that matter most, and hence increase the relevance, reproducibility and consistency of the results by reducing costs, compared to a study based on the comprehensive requirements of the PEF method.

Only PEFCRs developed by or in cooperation with the European Commission, or adopted by the Commission or as EU acts, are recognised as being in line with this method.

Product flow – products entering from or leaving to another product system.

Product system – collection of unit processes with elementary and product flows, performing one or more defined functions, which model the life cycle of a product.

Raw material – primary or secondary material used to produce a product.

Reference flow – measure of the outputs from processes in a given product system required to fulfil the function expressed by the functional unit.

Refurbishment – the process of restoring components to a functional and/or satisfactory state compared to the original specification (providing the same function), using methods such as resurfacing, repainting, etc. Refurbished products may have been tested and verified to function properly.

Releases – emissions to air and discharges to water and soil.

Representative product (model) – this may be a real or virtual (non-existing) product. The virtual product should be calculated based on average European market sales-weighted characteristics for all existing technologies/materials covered by the product category or sub-category.

Other weighting sets may be used, if justified – for example weighted average based on mass (ton of material) or weighted average based on product units (pieces).

Representative sample – a representative sample with respect to one or more variables is a sample in which the distribution of these variables is exactly the same (or similar) as in the population of which the sample is a subset.

Resource use, fossil – EF impact category that addresses the use of non-renewable fossil natural resources (e.g. natural gas, coal, oil).

Resource use, minerals and metals – EF impact category that addresses the use of non-renewable abiotic natural resources (minerals and metals).

Review – procedure intended to ensure that the process of developing or revising a PEFCR has been carried out in accordance with the requirements provided in the PEF method and part A of Annex II.

Review report - a documentation of the review process that includes the review statement, all relevant information about the review process, the detailed comments from the reviewer(s) and the corresponding responses, and the outcome. The document shall carry the electronic or handwritten signature of the reviewer (or the lead reviewer, if a reviewer panel is involved)

Review panel – team of experts (reviewers) who will review the PEFCR

Reviewer – independent external expert conducting the review of the PEFCR and possibly taking part in a reviewer panel.

Sample – a subset containing the characteristics of a larger population. Samples are used in statistical testing when population sizes are too large for the test to include all possible members or observations. A sample should represent the whole population and not reflect bias toward a specific attribute.

Secondary data – data that is not from a specific process within the supply-chain of the company performing a PEF study.

This refers to data that is not directly collected, measured or estimated by the company, but rather sourced from a third party LCI database or other sources.

Secondary data includes industry average data (e.g., from published production data, government statistics and industry associations), literature studies, engineering studies and patents) and may also be based on financial data, and contain proxy and other generic data.

Primary data that go through a horizontal aggregation step are considered to be secondary data.

Sensitivity analysis – systematic procedures for estimating the effects of the choices made regarding methods and data on the results of a PEF study.

Site-specific data – directly measured or collected data from one facility (production site).

A synonym of ‘primary data’.

Single overall score – sum of the weighted EF results of all environmental impact categories.

Specific data – directly measured or collected data representative of activities at a specific facility or set of facilities.

A synonym of ‘primary data’.

Subdivision – subdividing involves disaggregating multifunctional processes or facilities to isolate the input flows directly associated with each process or facility output. The process is investigated to see whether it may be subdivided. Where subdivision is possible, inventory data should be collected only for those unit processes directly attributable to the products/services of concern.

Sub-population – any finite or infinite aggregation of individuals, not necessarily animate, subject to a statistical study that constitutes a homogenous sub-set of the whole population.

A synonym of ‘stratum’.

Sub-processes – processes used to represent the activities of the level 1 processes (=building blocks). Sub-processes may be presented in their (partially) aggregated form (see Figure 1).

Sub-sample - a sample of a sub-population.

Supply chain – all of the upstream and downstream activities associated with the operations of the user of the PEF method, including the use of sold products by consumers and the end-of-life treatment of sold products after consumer use.

Supply chain-specific – refers to a specific aspect of a company’s specific supply chain. For example, the recycled content of aluminium produced by a specific company.

System boundary – definition of aspects included or excluded from the study. For example, for a ‘cradle-to-grave‘ EF analysis, the system boundary includes all activities ranging from the extraction of raw materials, through processing, distribution, storage and use, to the disposal or recycling stages.

System boundary diagram – graphic representation of the system boundary defined for the PEF study.

Temporary carbon storage – this happens when a product reduces the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere or creates negative emissions, by removing and storing carbon for a limited amount of time.

Type III environmental declaration – an environmental declaration providing quantified environmental data using predetermined parameters and, where relevant, additional environmental information.

Uncertainty analysis – procedure for assessing uncertainty in the results of a PEF study due to data variability and choice-related uncertainty.

Unit process – smallest element considered in the LCI for which input and output data are quantified.

Unit process, black box – process chain or plant-level unit process. This covers horizontally averaged unit processes across different sites. Also covers multi-functional unit processes where the different co-products undergo different processing steps within the black box, hence causing allocation problems for this dataset (4).

Unit process, single operation - unit operation type unit process that cannot be further subdivided. Covers multi-functional processes of the unit operation type (5).

Upstream – occurring along the supply chain of purchased goods/ services prior to entering the system boundary.

User of the PEFCR – stakeholder producing a PEF study based on a PEFCR.

User of the PEF method – stakeholder producing a PEF study based on the PEF method.

User of the PEF results – stakeholder using the PEF results for any internal or external purpose.

Validation – confirmation – by the environmental footprint verifier – that the information and data in the PEF study, PEF report and communication vehicles are reliable, credible and correct.

Validation statement – conclusive document aggregating the conclusions from the verifiers or the verification team regarding the EF study. This document is mandatory and shall carry the electronic or handwritten signature of the verifier or (where a verification panel is involved) the lead verifier.

Verification – conformity assessment process carried out by an environmental footprint verifier to demonstrate whether the PEF study has been carried out in compliance with Annex I

Verification report – documentation of the verification process and findings, including detailed comments from the verifier(s), as well as the corresponding responses. This document is mandatory, but it may be confidential. The document shall carry the electronic or handwritten signature of the verifier or (where a verification panel is involved) the lead verifier.

Verification team – team of verifiers who will verify the EF study, EF report and EF communication vehicles.

Verifier – independent external expert performing a verification of the EF study and possibly taking part in a verification team.

Vertical aggregation – technical or engineering-based aggregation refers to vertical aggregation of unit processes that are directly linked within a single facility or process train. Vertical aggregation involves combining unit process datasets (or aggregated process datasets) together, linked by a flow.

Waste – substances or objects which the holder intends (or is required) to dispose of.

Water use – EF impact category that represents the relative available water remaining per area in a watershed, after demand from humans and aquatic ecosystems has been met. It assesses the potential for water deprivation, to either humans or ecosystems, based on the assumption that the less water remaining available per area, the more likely it is that another user will be deprived.

Weighting – a step that supports the interpretation and communication of the analysis results. PEF results are multiplied by a set of weighting factors (in %), which reflect the perceived relative importance of the impact categories considered. Weighted EF results may be directly compared across impact categories, and also summed across impact categories to obtain a single overall score.

Relationship to other methods and standards

Each requirement specified in the PEF method was developed taking into consideration the recommendations of similar, widely recognised product environmental accounting methods and guidance documents.

Specifically, the methodological guides considered were:

ISO standards, in particular:

(a)

EN ISO 14040:2006 Environmental management — Life cycle assessment — Principles and framework;

(b)

EN ISO 14044:2006 Environmental management — Life cycle assessment — Requirements and guidelines;

(c)

EN ISO 14067:2018 Greenhouse gases — Carbon footprint of products — Requirements and guidelines for quantification;

(d)

ISO 14046:2014 Environmental management — Water footprint — Principles, requirements and guidelines;

(e)

EN ISO 14020:2001 Environmental labels and declarations — General principles;

(f)

EN ISO 14021:2016 Environmental labels and declarations — Self-declared environmental claims (Type II environmental labelling)

(g)

EN ISO 14025:2010 Environmental labels and declarations – Type III environmental declarations – Principles and procedures;

(h)

ISO 14050:2020 Environmental management — vocabulary

(i)

CEN ISO/TS 14071:2016Environmental management — Life cycle assessment — Critical review processes and reviewer competencies: Additional requirements and guidelines to EN ISO 14044:2006

(j)

ISO 17024:2012 Conformity assessment – General requirements for bodies operating certification of persons.

(k)

PEF Guide, Annex to Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (April 2013);

(l)

ILCD (International Reference Life Cycle Data System) Handbook (6) developed by EC Joint Research Centre;

(m)

Ecological Footprint Standards (7);

(n)

Greenhouse Gas Protocol - Product Life Cycle Accounting and Reporting Standard (8) (World Resources Institute - WRI/ World Business Council for Sustainable Development - WBCSD);

(o)

BP X30-323-0:2015 General principles for an environmental communication on mass market products (Agence de la transition écologique, ADEME) (9);

(p)

PAS 2050:2011 Specification for the assessment of the life cycle greenhouse gas emissions of goods and services (British Standards Institution - BSI);

(q)

ENVIFOOD Protocol (10).

(r)

FAO:2016. Environmental performance of animal feeds supply chains: Guidelines for assessment. LEAP Partnership.

A detailed description of most of the analysed methods and the outcome of the analysis is available in ‘Analysis of Existing Environmental Footprint methodologies for Products and Organisations: Recommendations, Rationale, and Alignment‘ (11).

1.   Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (PEFCRs)

The primary objective of a PEFCR is to fix a consistent and specific set of rules for calculating the relevant environmental information of products belonging to the product category in scope. An important objective is to focus on what matters most for a specific product category, to make PEF studies easier, faster and less costly.

An equally important objective is to enable comparisons and comparative assertions in all cases where this is feasible, relevant and appropriate. Comparisons and comparative assertions are allowed only if PEF studies are conducted in compliance with a PEFCR. All PEF studies shall be conducted in compliance with a PEFCR, if a PEFCR is available for the product in scope.

Requirements for developing PEFCRs are specified in part A of Annex II. A PEFCR may further specify requirements made in the PEF method and add new requirements, if the PEF method leaves more than one choice. The objective is to ensure that PEFCRs are developed according to the PEF method and that they provide the specifications needed to achieve the comparability, increased reproducibility, consistency, relevance, focus and efficiency of PEF studies.

PEFCRs should, as far as possible, and recognising the different application contexts, be compliant with existing relevant international product category rules (PCR). If other PCRs are available from other schemes, these are to be listed and evaluated. They may be used as a basis for developing a PEFCR, in line with the requirements provided in Annex II.

1.1.   Approach and examples for potential applications

The rules provided in the PEF method enable practitioners to conduct PEF studies that are more reproducible, consistent, robust, verifiable and comparable. The results of PEF studies are the basis for the provision of EF information and they may be used in a diverse number of potential fields of application.

Applications of PEF studies without an existing PEFCR for the product(s) in scope will include:

1)

In-house applications

a)

optimising processes along the life cycle of a product,

b)

supporting environmental management,

c)

identifying environmental hotspots,

d)

supporting product design that minimises environmental impacts along the life cycle,

e)

environmental performance improvement and tracking,

2)

External applications: (e.g. business to business (B2B), business to consumer (B2C)):

a)

applying or complying with policies referring to the PEF,

b)

responding to customers and consumers demands,

c)

marketing,

d)

co-operation along supply chains to optimise the product along the life cycle,

e)

participating in 3rd party schemes related to environmental claims or giving visibility to products that calculate and communicate their life cycle environmental performance.

Applications of PEF studies performed in compliance with an existing PEFCR for the product in scope, in addition to those listed above, will include:

Comparisons and comparative assertions (i.e. claims of overall superiority or equivalence for the environmental performance of one product compared to another (based on EN ISO 14040:2006)) based on PEF studies,

Comparison and comparative assertions against the benchmark of the product category, followed by a grading of other products according to their performance versus the benchmark,

Identifying significant environmental impacts common to a product group,

Reputational schemes giving visibility to products that calculate their life cycle environmental performance,

Green procurement (public and corporate).

2.   General considerations for Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) studies

2.1.   How to use this method

This method provides the rules necessary to conduct a PEF study and is presented in a sequential manner, in the order of the methodological steps that shall be completed when calculating a PEF.

Where appropriate, sections begin with a general description of the methodological step, along with an overview of necessary considerations and supporting examples.

When additional requirements for creating PEFCRs are specified, these are available in Annex II.

2.2.   Principles for Product Environmental Footprint studies

To perform a PEF study the following two requirements shall be met:

i)

The bill of material (BoM) shall be specific of the product in scope,

ii)

The modelling of the manufacturing processes shall be based on company-specific data (e.g. energy needed to assemble the materials/components of the product in scope).

Note:

For companies producing more than one product, the activity data used (including the BoM) shall be specific to the product in scope of the study.

To produce reliable, reproducible, and verifiable PEF studies, a core suite of analytical principles shall be adhered to. These principles provide overarching guidance on how to apply the PEF method. They shall be considered with respect to each phase of PEF studies, from defining the goal and the scope, through data collection, impact assessment, reporting and verification of study outcomes.

Users of this method shall observe the following principles in conducting a PEF study:

(1)   Relevance

All methods used and data collected for the purpose of quantifying the PEF shall be as relevant to the study as possible.

(2)   Completeness

Quantification of the PEF shall include all environmentally relevant material/energy flows and other environmental interventions as required for adherence to the defined system boundary, the data requirements, and the impact assessment methods employed.

(3)   Consistency

Strict conformity to this method shall be observed in all steps of the PEF study, to ensure internal consistency and comparability.

(4)   Accuracy

All reasonable effort shall be taken to reduce uncertainties in product system modelling and the reporting of results.

(5)   Transparency

PEF information shall be disclosed in such a way as to provide intended users with the necessary basis for decision-making, and for stakeholders to assess its robustness and reliability.

2.3.   Phases of a Product Environmental Footprint study

A number of phases shall be completed in carrying out a PEF study in line with this method - i.e. goal definition, scope definition, life cycle inventory (LCI), life cycle impact assessment (LCIA), interpretation of PEF results and PEF reporting – see Figure 2.

Figure 2

Phases of a Product Environmental Footprint study

Image 2L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

In the goal definition phase, the aims of the study are defined, namely the intended application, the reasons for carrying out the study and the intended audience. In the scope definition phase, the main methodological choices are made, for example the exact definition of the functional unit, identifying the system boundary, selecting additional environmental and technical information, and the main assumptions and limitations.

The LCI phase involves the data collection procedure and the calculation procedure for quantifying of inputs and outputs of the studied system. Inputs and outputs concern energy, raw material and other physical inputs, products and co-products and waste, and emissions to air/water/soil. Data collected concern foreground processes and background processes. Data are put in relationship to the process units and functional unit. The LCI is an iterative process. In fact, as data are collected and more is learned about the system, new data requirements or limitations may be identified that require a change in the data collection procedures so the goals of the study will still be met.

In the impact assessment phase, LCI results are associated with environmental impact categories and indicators. This is done through LCIA methods, which first classify emissions into impact categories and then characterise them as common units (e.g. CO2 and CH4 emissions are both expressed in CO2 equivalent emissions by using their global warming potential). Examples of impact categories are climate change, acidification or resource use.

In the interpretation phase, results from LCI and LCIA are interpreted in accordance with the stated goal and scope. In this phase, most relevant impact categories, life cycle stages, processes and elementary flows are identified. Conclusions and recommendations can be drawn, based on the analytical results. It also includes the reporting step designed to summarise the results of the PEF study in the PEF report.

Finally, during the verification phase a conformity assessment process is carried out, to check whether the PEF study has been carried out in compliance with the present PEF method. The verification is mandatory whenever the PEF study, or part of the information in it, is used for any type of external communication.

3.   Defining the goal(s) and scope of the Product Environmental Footprint study

3.1.   Goal definition

Goal definition is the first step of a PEF study, and sets the overall context for the study. The purpose of clearly defining goals is to ensure that the aims, methods, results and intended applications are aligned, and that a shared vision is in place to guide participants in the study.

The decision to use the PEF method implies that some aspects of the goal definition will be decided a priori, due to the specific requirements provided by the PEF method.

In defining goals, it is important to identify the intended applications and the degree of analytical depth and rigour of the study. This shall be reflected in the defined study limitations (scope definition phase).

The goal definition for a PEF study shall include:

1.

Intended application(s);

2.

Reasons for carrying out the study and decision context;

3.

Target audience;

4.

Commissioner of the study;

5.

Identity of the verifier.

Table 1

Example of goal definition - Product Environmental Footprint of a T-shirt

Aspects

Detail

Intended application(s):

Provide product information to customer

Reasons for carrying out the study and decision context:

Respond to a request from a customer

Target audience:

External technical audience, business-to-business.

Verifier:

Independent external verifier, Mr Y

Commissioner of the study:

G company limited

3.2.   Scope definition

The scope of the PEF study describes in detail the system to be evaluated and the technical specifications.

The scope definition shall be in line with the defined goals of the study and shall include (see subsequent sections for a more detailed description):

1.

Functional unit and reference flow;

2.

System boundary;

3.

EF impact categories (12);

4.

Additional information to be included;

5.

Assumptions/limitations.

3.2.1   Functional unit and reference flow

The functional unit (FU) is the quantified performance of a product system, to be used as a reference unit. The functional unit qualitatively and quantitatively describes the function(s) and duration of the product in scope.

The reference flow is the amount of products needed to provide the defined function. All other input and output flows in the analysis quantitatively relate to it. The number of products needed to fulfil the lifetime of the product should always be rounded up, unless there is a valid reason for not doing this. The reference flow may be expressed in direct relation to the FU or in a more product-oriented way.

Users of the PEF method shall define the FU and the reference flow for the PEF study. They shall also describe which aspects of the product are not covered by the FU and justify why (e.g., because they are not quantifiable or intrinsically subjective).

The FU for a PEF study shall be defined according to the following aspects:

i)

The function(s)/service(s) provided: ‘what’;

ii)

The extent of the function or service: ‘how much’;

iii)

The expected level of quality: ‘how well’;

iv)

The duration/life time of the product: ‘how long’;

If shelf-life (indicated for example as ‘best before date’ or ‘use by date’) is provided on the packaging (e.g. number of months) of food products, then food losses at storage, retail, and consumer stages shall be quantified. If the type of packaging affects the shelf-life, it shall be taken into account. This is relevant for the ‘how long’ aspect of the FU.

If applicable standards exist, they shall be used and cited in the PEF study when defining the FU. The International System of Units (SI), commonly known as the metric system, shall always be used.

Example 1

Define the FU of decorative paint: the functional unit is to protect and decorate 1 m2 of substrate for 50 years at a specified quality level (minimum 98% opacity).

What: Provide decoration and protection of a substrate,

How much: coverage of 1 m2 of substrate,

How well: with a minimum 98% opacity

How long: for 50 years (life time of the building)

Reference flow: amount of product needed to fulfil the defined function, to be measured in kg of paint.

Example 2

Define the FU and reference flow for the PEF of pet food.

What: To serve the recommended daily intake in kilocalories of metabolisable energy (kcal ME) (‘daily ration‘) of prepared pet food to a cat or dog

How much: Daily ration

How well: To meet the daily caloric and nutritional requirements of an average cat or dog (where average refers to the pet’s weight: 4 kg for a cat and 15 kg for a dog)

How long: 1 day of serving prepared pet food to a cat or dog.

Reference flow: amount of product needed to fulfil the defined function, to be measured in grams (g) per day.

For intermediate products, the FU is more difficult to define as it may often fulfil multiple functions and the whole life cycle of the product is not known. Therefore, a declared unit should be applied, for example, mass (kilograms) or volume (cubic meters). In this case, the reference flow may correspond to the FU.

3.2.2.   System boundary

The system boundary defines which parts of the product life cycle and which associated life cycle stages and processes belong to the analysed system (i.e. are required for carrying out its function as defined by the FU), except for those processes excluded based on the cut-off rule (see section 4.6.4). The reason for and potential significance of any exclusion shall be justified and documented.

The system boundary shall be defined following a general supply-chain logic, including all stages from raw material acquisition and pre-processing, production of the main product, product distribution and storage, use stage and end of life treatment of the product (if appropriate, see section 4.2). The co-products, by-products and waste streams of at least the foreground system shall be clearly identified.

System boundary diagram

A system boundary diagram (or flow diagram) is a schematic representation of the analysed system. It shall clearly indicate the activities or processes that are included and those that are excluded from the analysis. The user of the PEF method shall highlight where company-specific data were used.

The activity and/or process names in the system diagram and in the PEF report shall be aligned. The system diagram shall be included in the scope definition and included in the PEF report.

3.2.3.   Environmental Footprint impact categories

The purpose of LCIA is to group and aggregate the collected LCI data according to the respective contributions to each EF impact category. The selection of EF impact categories covers a broad range of relevant environmental issues related to the product supply chain of interest, following the general completeness requirements for PEF studies.

EF impact categories (13) refer to specific categories of impacts considered in a PEF study and they constitute the EF impact assessment method. Characterisation models are used to quantify the environmental mechanism between the LCI (i.e. inputs (e.g. resources) and emissions associated with the product life cycle) and the category indicator of each EF impact category.

Table 2 provides a default list of EF impact categories and related assessment methods. For a PEF study, all EF impact categories shall be applied, without exclusion. The full list of CFs that shall be used is provided within the EF reference package (14)

Table 2

EF impact categories with respective impact category indicators and characterisation models.

EF impact category

Impact category indicator

Unit

Characterisation model

Robust-ness

Climate change, total  (15)

Global warming potential (GWP100)

kg CO2 eq

Bern model - Global warming potentials (GWP) over a 100-year time horizon (based on IPCC 2013)

I

Ozone depletion

Ozone depletion potential (ODP)

kg CFC-11 eq

EDIP model based on the ODPs of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) over an infinite time horizon (WMO 2014 + integrations)

I

Human toxicity, cancer

Comparative toxic unit for humans (CTUh)

CTUh

based on USEtox2.1 model (Fantke et al. 2017), adapted as in Saouter et al., 2018

III

Human toxicity, non-cancer

Comparative toxic unit for humans (CTUh)

CTUh

based on USEtox2.1 model (Fantke et al. 2017), adapted as in Saouter et al., 2018

III

Particulate matter

Impact on human health

Disease incidence

PM model (Fantke et al., 2016 in UNEP 2016)

I

Ionising radiation, human health

Human exposure efficiency relative to U235

kBq U235 eq

Human health effect model as developed by Dreicer et al. 1995 (Frischknecht et al, 2000)

II

Photochemical ozone formation, human health

Tropospheric ozone concentration increase

kg NMVOC eq

LOTOS-EUROS model (Van Zelm et al, 2008) as applied in ReCiPe 2008

II

Acidification

Accumulated exceedance (AE)

mol H+ eq

Accumulated exceedance (Seppälä et al. 2006, Posch et al, 2008)

II

Eutrophication, terrestrial

Accumulated exceedance (AE)

mol N eq

Accumulated exceedance (Seppälä et al. 2006, Posch et al, 2008)

II

Eutrophication, freshwater

Fraction of nutrients reaching freshwater end compartment (P)

kg P eq

EUTREND model (Struijs et al, 2009) as applied in ReCiPe

II

Eutrophication, marine

Fraction of nutrients reaching marine end compartment (N)

kg N eq

EUTREND model (Struijs et al, 2009) as applied in ReCiPe

II

Ecotoxicity, freshwater

Comparative toxic unit for ecosystems (CTUe)

CTUe

based on USEtox2.1 model (Fantke et al. 2017), adapted as in Saouter et al., 2018

III

Land use  (16)

Soil quality index (17)

Dimensionless (pt)

Soil quality index based on LANCA model (De Laurentiis et al. 2019) and on the LANCA CF version 2.5 (Horn and Maier, 2018)

III

Water use

User deprivation potential (deprivation-weighted water consumption)

m3 water eq of deprived water

Available WAter REmaining (AWARE) model (Boulay et al., 2018; UNEP 2016)

III

Resource use, minerals and metals

Abiotic resource depletion (ADP ultimate reserves)

kg Sb eq

van Oers et al., 2002 as in CML 2002 method, v.4.8

III

Resource use, fossils

Abiotic resource depletion – fossil fuels (ADP-fossil) (18)

MJ

van Oers et al., 2002 as in CML 2002 method, v.4.8

III

Further information on impact assessment calculations is provided in section 5 of this Annex.

3.2.4.   Additional information to be included in the PEF

Relevant potential environmental impacts of a product may go beyond the EF impact categories. It is important to report them, whenever feasible, as additional environmental information.

Similarly, relevant technical aspects and/or physical properties of the product in scope may need to be taken into account. These aspects shall be reported as additional technical information.

3.2.4.1.    Additional environmental information

Additional environmental information shall be:

(a)

In compliance with relevant legislation, for instance the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive (UCPD) (19) and related guidance;

(b)

Relevant to the particular product or product category;

(c)

Additional to the EF impact categories: additional environmental information shall not reflect the same or similar EF impact categories, shall not substitute the characterisation models of the EF impact categories and shall not report results of new |characterisation factors (CFs) added to EF impact categories.

The supporting models for this additional information shall be clearly referenced and documented together with the corresponding indicators. For example, biodiversity impacts due to land use changes may occur in association with a specific site or activity. This may require the application of additional impact categories that are not included among the EF impact categories, or even additional qualitative descriptions, where impacts may not be linked to the product supply chain in a quantitative manner. Such additional methods should be viewed as complementary to the EF impact categories.

Additional environmental information shall only be related to environmental aspects. Information and instructions, e.g. product safety sheets that are not related to the environmental performance of the product, shall not be part of additional environmental information.

Additional environmental information may include:

(a)

Information on local/site-specific impacts;

(b)

Offsets;

(c)

Environmental indicators or product responsibility indicators (e.g. as per the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI));

(d)

For gate-to-gate assessments, number of IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources) Red List species and national conservation list species with habitats in areas affected by operations, by level of extinction risk;

(e)

Description of significant impacts of activities, products, and services on biodiversity in protected areas and in areas of high biodiversity value outside protected areas;

(f)

Noise impacts;

(g)

Other environmental information considered relevant within the scope of the PEF study.

Biodiversity

The PEF method does not include any impact category named ‘biodiversity‘, as currently there is no international consensus on an LCIA method capturing that impact. However, the PEF method includes at least eight impact categories that have an effect on biodiversity (i.e., climate change, eutrophication (aquatic freshwater), eutrophication (aquatic marine), eutrophication (terrestrial), acidification, water use, land use, ecotoxicity freshwater).

Considering the high relevance of biodiversity for many product groups, each PEF study shall explain whether biodiversity is relevant for the product in scope. If that is the case, the user of the PEF method shall include biodiversity indicators under additional environmental information.

The following options may be used to cover biodiversity:

(a)

expressing the (avoided) impact on biodiversity as the percentage of material that comes from ecosystems that have been managed to maintain or enhance conditions for biodiversity, as demonstrated by regular monitoring and reporting of biodiversity levels and gains or losses (e.g. less than 15% loss of species richness due to disturbance – though the PEF studies may set their own loss level, if they can make a convincing case for it and not in contradiction to a relevant existing PEFCR).

The assessment should refer to materials that end up in the final products and to materials that have been used during the production process. For example, charcoal that is used in steel production processes, or soy that is used to feed cows that produce dairy etc.

(b)

To report, additionally, the percentage of such materials for which no chain of custody or traceability information can be found.

(c)

To use a certification system as a proxy. The user of the PEF method should determine which certification schemes provide sufficient evidence for ensuring biodiversity maintenance and describe the criteria used.

The user of the PEF method may choose other, relevant indicators to cover the impacts of the product on biodiversity. The PEF study shall motivate the choice and describe the chosen methodology.

3.2.4.2.    Additional technical information

Additional technical information may include (non-exhaustive list):

(a)

Bill of materials data;

(b)

Reversible disassembly, ease of assembly, reparability and other circular economy-related information;

(c)

Information on the use of hazardous substances;

(d)

Information on the disposal of hazardous/non-hazardous waste;

(e)

Information on energy consumption;

(f)

Technical parameters, such as the use of: renewable versus non-renewable energy; renewable versus non-renewable fuels; secondary materials; fresh water resources;

(g)

Total weight of waste by type and disposal method;

(h)

Weight of transported, imported, exported, or treated waste deemed hazardous under the terms of the Basel Convention (20) Annexes I, II, III, and VIII, and percentage of transported waste shipped internationally;

(i)

Information and data related to the functional unit and technical performance of the product.

(j)

Information on biodegradability and compostability;

When the product in scope is an intermediate product, additional technical information shall include:

(a)

The biogenic carbon content at factory gate (physical content and allocated content);

(b)

Recycled content (R1);

(c)

Results with application-specific A-values of the circular footprint formula (CFF), if relevant.

3.2.5.   Assumptions/ limitations

In PEF studies, several limitations on carrying out the analysis may arise and therefore assumptions need to be made. All limitations (e.g. data gaps) and assumptions shall be transparently reported.

4.   Life cycle inventory

An inventory of all material, energy and waste inputs and outputs and emissions into air, water and soil for the product supply chain shall be compiled as a basis for modelling the PEF.

Detailed data requirements and quality requirements are described in section 4.6.

The life cycle inventory (LCI) shall adopt the following classification of flows included:

1)

elementary flows;

2)

non-elementary (or complex) flows (e.g. product or waste flows).

Within the PEF study, all non-elementary flows in the LCI shall be modelled up to the level of elementary flows, apart from the product flow for the product in scope. For example, waste flows shall not only be included in the study as kg of household waste or hazardous waste, but shall be modelled up to the stage of emissions into water, air and soil, from the treatment of the solid waste. The LCI modelling is therefore only complete when all non-elementary flows are expressed as elementary flows. Therefore, the LCI dataset of the PEF study shall contain only elementary flows, apart from the product flow for the product in scope.

4.1.   Screening step

An initial screening of the LCI – the ‘screening step’ – may be performed because it helps focus data collection activities and data quality priorities. A screening step shall include the LCIA phase and result in further, iterative refinements to the life cycle model for the product in scope, as more information becomes available. Within a screening step, no cut-off is allowed and readily available primary or secondary data may be used, fulfilling the data quality requirements to the extent possible (as defined in section 4.6). Once the screening is performed, the initial scope settings may be refined.

4.2.   Life cycle stages

As a minimum, the default life cycle stages in a PEF study shall be:

1)

raw material acquisition and pre-processing (including production of parts and components);

2)

manufacturing (production of the main product);

3)

distribution (product distribution and storage);

4)

use;

5)

end of life (including product recovery or recycling).

If a different name is used for any of these default stages, the user shall specify which default stage it corresponds to.

If there is valid need to do so, the user of the PEF method may decide to split or add life cycle stages. The reason(s) for doing this shall be set out in the PEF report. For example, the life cycle stage 'Raw material acquisition and pre-processing' may be split into 'Raw material acquisition', 'pre-processing', and 'raw materials supplier transport'.

For intermediate products, the following life cycle stages shall be excluded:

1)

distribution (justified exceptions are allowed);

2)

use;

3)

end of life (including product, recovery / recycling)

4.2.1.   Raw material acquisition and pre-processing

This life cycle stage starts when resources are extracted from nature, and ends when product components enter (through the gate of) the product’s production facility. Examples of processes that may occur in this stage include:

1)

mining and extraction of resources;

2)

pre-processing of all material inputs to the product in scope, including recyclable materials;

3)

agricultural and forestry activities;

4)

transportation within and between extraction and pre-processing facilities, and to the production facility.

Packaging production shall be modelled as part of the ‘Raw material acquisition and pre-processing’ life cycle stage.

4.2.2.   Manufacturing

The production stage begins when the product components enter the production site, and ends when the finished product leaves the production facility. Examples of production-related activities include:

1)

chemical processing;

2)

manufacturing;

3)

transport of semi-finished products between manufacturing processes;

4)

assembly of material components.

The waste of products used during manufacturing shall be included in the modelling for the manufacturing stage. The circular footprint formula (section 4.4.8) shall be applied to such waste.

4.2.3.   Distribution

Products are distributed to users and may be stored at various points along the supply chain. The distribution stage includes transport from factory gate to warehouse/retail, storage at warehouse/retail and transport from warehouse/retail to consumer home.

Examples of processes to include:

1)

energy inputs for warehouse lighting and heating;

2)

use of refrigerants in warehouses and transport vehicles;

3)

fuel use by vehicles;

4)

roads and trucks.

Waste from products used during distribution and storage shall be included in the modelling. The circular footprint formula (section 4.4.8) shall be applied to such waste, and the results taken into consideration under the distribution stage.

Default loss rates per type of product during distribution and at the consumer are provided in part F of Annex II and shall be used if no specific information is available. Allocation rules on energy consumption at storage are presented in section 4.4.5. For transport, see section 4.4.3.

4.2.4.   Use

The use stage describes how the product is expected to be used by the end user (e.g. the consumer). This stage starts the moment the end user uses the product until it leaves its place of use and enters the end of life (EoL) stage (e.g., recycling or final treatment).

The use stage includes all activities and products that are needed for proper use of the product (i.e. to ensure it performs its original function throughout its lifetime). Waste generated by using the product, such as food waste and its primary packaging or the product itself once no longer functional, is excluded from the use stage and shall be part of the EoL stage of the product.

Some examples include: the provision of tap water when cooking pasta; the manufacturing and distribution of, and waste from, materials needed for maintenance, repair or refurbishment (e.g. spare parts needed to repair the product, coolant production and waste management due to losses). The EoL of coffee capsules, residues for coffee making and packaging of ground coffee belong to the end of life stage.

In some cases, some products are needed for a proper use of the product in scope and they are used in a way that they become physically integrated: in this case, the waste treatment of these products belongs to the EoL of the product in scope. For example, when the product in scope is a detergent, the treatment of the wastewater following the use of the detergent belongs to the end of life stage.

The use scenario also needs to reflect whether or not the use of the analysed products might lead to changes in the systems in which they are used.

The following sources of technical information on the use scenario may be taken into account:

1)

Market surveys or other market data;

2)

Published international standards that specify guidance and requirements for developing scenarios for the use stage and scenarios for (i.e. estimation of) the service life of the product;

3)

Published national guidelines for the development of scenarios for the use stage and scenarios for (i.e. estimation of) the service life of the product;

4)

Published industry guidelines for developing scenarios for the use stage and scenarios for (i.e. estimation of) the service life of the product.

The manufacturer’s recommended method to be applied in the use stage (e.g. cooking in an oven at a specified temperature for a specified time) should be used to provide a basis for determining the use stage of a product. The actual usage pattern may, however, differ from those recommended and should be used if this information is available and documented.

Default loss rates per type of product during distribution and at consumer are provided in part F of Annex II and shall be used if no specific information is available.

The following processes are excluded from the use stage:

1)

If a product is reused (see also section 4.4.9.2), the processes needed to collect the product and make it ready for the new use cycle are excluded (e.g. the impacts from collection and cleaning reusable bottles). These processes are included in the EoL stage, if the product is reused as a product with different specifications (see section 4.4.9 for further details). If the product lifetime is extended to that of a product with original product specifications (providing the same function), these processes shall be included in the FU and reference flow.

2)

Transport from retail to consumer home shall be excluded from the use stage and shall instead be included in the distribution stage.

3)

The transport to EoL shall be excluded from the use stage and instead be included in the end of life stage.

Waste from products used during the use stage shall be included in the modelling for the use stage. The circular footprint formula (section 4.4.8) shall be applied to such waste.

The PEF report shall document the methods and assumptions used for this stage. All relevant assumptions for the use stage shall be documented.

Technical specifications for modelling the use stage are available in Section 4.4.7.

4.2.5.   End of life (including product recovery and recycling)

The end of life stage begins when the product in scope and its packaging is discarded by the user and ends when the product in scope is returned to nature as a waste product or enters another product’s life cycle (i.e. as a recycled input). In general this includes the waste from the product in scope, such as food waste and primary packaging.

Waste generated during the manufacturing, distribution, retail, use stage or after use shall be included in the life cycle of the product and modelled at the life cycle stage where it occurs.

The end of life stage shall be modelled using the circular footprint formula and requirements provided in section 4.4.8. The user of the PEF method shall include all EoL processes applicable to the product in scope. Examples of processes to be covered in this life cycle stage include:

1)

Collection and transport of the product in scope and its packaging to end of life treatment facilities;

2)

Dismantling of components;

3)

Shredding and sorting;

4)

Wastewater from products used, dissolved in or with water (e.g. detergents, shower gels, etc.);

5)

Conversion into recycled material;

6)

Composting or other organic-waste treatment methods;

7)

Incineration and disposal of bottom ash;

8)

Landfilling and landfill operation and maintenance.

For intermediate products, the EoL of the product in scope shall be excluded.

4.3.   Nomenclature for the life cycle inventory

LCI data shall be compliant with EF requirements:

For all elementary flows, the nomenclature shall be aligned with the most recent version of the EF reference package available on the EF developer’s page (21).

For the process datasets and product flow, the nomenclature shall be compliant with the ‘ILCD Handbook – Nomenclature and other conventions’ (22) .

4.4.   Modelling requirements

This section provides detailed guidance and requirements on how to model specific life cycle stages, processes and other aspects of the product life cycle, to compile the LCI. Covered aspects include:

(a)

agricultural production;

(b)

electricity use;

(c)

transport and logistics;

(d)

capital goods (infrastructure and equipment);

(e)

storage at distribution centre or retail;

(f)

sampling procedure;

(g)

use stage;

(h)

end of life modelling;

(i)

extended product lifetime;

(j)

packaging;

(k)

GHG emissions and removals;

(l)

offsets;

(m)

handling multi-functional processes;

(n)

data collection requirements and quality requirements;

(o)

cut-off.

4.4.1.   Agricultural production

4.4.1.1.    Handling multi-functional processes

The rules described in the LEAP Guideline shall be followed (23).

4.4.1.2.    Crop type specific and country, region or climate specific data

Crop type specific and country/region/climate-specific data for yield, water and land use, land use change, fertiliser (artificial and organic) amount (N, P amount) and pesticide amount (per active ingredient), per hectare per year, shall be used.

4.4.1.3.    Averaging data

Cultivation data shall be collected over a period of time sufficient to provide an average assessment of the LCI associated with the inputs and outputs for crop growing that will offset fluctuations due to seasonal differences. This shall be undertaken as described in the LEAP guidelines, set out below:

(a)

For annual crops, an assessment period of at least three years shall be used (to level out differences in crop yields related to fluctuations in growing conditions over the years such as climate, pests and diseases, etc.). Where data covering a three-year period is not available, i.e. due to starting up a new production system (e.g. new greenhouse, newly cleared land, shift to other crop), the assessment may be conducted over a shorter period, but shall be not less than 1 year. Crops or plants grown in greenhouses shall be considered to be annual crops/ plants, unless the growth cycle is significantly less than a year and another crop is grown consecutively within that year. Tomatoes, peppers and other crops, which are grown and harvested over a longer period through the year, are considered to be annual crops.

(b)

For perennial plants (including entire plants and edible portions of perennial plants), a steady state situation (i.e. where all development stages are proportionally represented in the studied time period) shall be assumed and a three-year period shall be used to estimate the inputs and outputs.

(c)

Where the different stages in the growth cycle may be of differing durations, a correction shall be made by adjusting the crop areas allocated to different development stages, in proportion to the crop areas expected in a theoretical steady state. The application of such corrections shall be explained and recorded in the PEF report. The LCI of perennial plants and crops shall not be undertaken until the production system actually yields output.

(d)

For crops that are grown and harvested in less than one year (e.g. lettuce produced in 2 to 4 months) data shall be gathered in relation to the specific time period for production of a single crop, from at least three recent consecutive cycles. Averaging over three years may best be done by first gathering annual data and calculating the LCI per year and then determining the three-year average.

4.4.1.4.    Pesticides

Pesticide emissions shall be modelled as specific active ingredients. The USEtox life cycle impact assessment method has a built-in multimedia fate model which simulates the fate of the pesticides, starting from the different emission compartments. Therefore, default emission fractions to environmental emission compartments are needed in the LCI modelling. The pesticides applied to the field shall be modelled as 90% emitted to the agricultural soil compartment, 9% emitted to air and 1% emitted to water (based on expert judgement, due to current limitations). More specific data may be used if available.

4.4.1.5.    Fertilisers

Fertiliser (and manure) emissions shall be differentiated per fertiliser type and cover as a minimum:

(a)

NH3, to air (from the use of N-fertiliser);

(b)

N2O, to air (direct and indirect) (from the use of N-fertiliser);

(c)

CO2, to air (from the use of lime, urea and urea-compounds);

(d)

NO3, to water unspecified (leaching from the use of N-fertiliser);

(e)

PO4, to water unspecified or freshwater (leaching and run-off of soluble phosphate from the use of P-fertiliser);

(f)

P, to water unspecified or freshwater (soil particles containing phosphorous, from the use of P-fertiliser).

The impact assessment model for freshwater eutrophication starts (i) when P leaves the agricultural field (run off) or (ii) from the application of manure or fertiliser on the agricultural field.

Within LCI modelling, the agricultural field (soil) is often seen as belonging to the technosphere and thus included in the LCI model. This aligns with approach (i), where the impact assessment model starts after run-off, i.e. when P leaves the agricultural field. Therefore, within the EF context, the LCI should be modelled as the amount of P emitted to water after run-off and the emission compartment ‘water’ shall be used.

When this amount is not available, the LCI may be modelled as the amount of P applied to the agricultural field (through manure or fertilisers) and the emission compartment ‘soil’ shall be used. In this case, the run-off from soil to water is part of the impact assessment method and included in the CF for soil.

The impact assessment marine eutrophication starts after N leaves the field (soil). Therefore, N emissions to soil shall not be modelled. The amount of emissions ending up in the different air and water compartments per amount of fertilisers applied to the field shall be modelled within the LCI.

N emissions shall be calculated from nitrogen applications by the farmer to the field and excluding external sources (e.g. rain deposition). The number of emissions factors is fixed in the EF context by following a simplified approach. For N-fertilisers, the Tier 1 emissions factors of Table 2-4 of IPCC (2006) shall be used, as reproduced in Table 3, except when better data is available. If better data is available, a more comprehensive nitrogen field model may be used in the PEF study, provided (i) it covers at least the emissions requested above, (ii) N is balanced in inputs and outputs and (iii) it is described in a transparent way.

Table 3

Tier 1 emissions factors of IPCC (2006) (modified)

Note that these values shall not be used to compare different types of synthetic fertiliser.

Emission

Compartment

Value to be applied

N2O (synthetic fertiliser and manure; direct and indirect)

Air

0.022 kg N2O/ kg N fertilizer applied

NH3 (synthetic fertiliser)

Air

kg NH3= kg N * FracGASF= 1*0.1* (17/14)= 0.12 kg NH3/ kg N fertilizer applied

NH3 (manure)

Air

kg NH3= kg N*FracGASF= 1*0.2* (17/14)= 0.24 kg NH3/ kg N manure applied

NO3 - (synthetic fertiliser and manure)

Water

kg NO3 - = kg N*FracLEACH = 1*0.3*(62/14) = 1.33 kg NO3 -/ kg N applied

FracGASF: fraction of synthetic fertiliser N applied to soils that volatilises as NH3 and NOx. FracLEACH: fraction of synthetic fertiliser and manure lost to leaching and runoff as NO3-

The above nitrogen field model has limitations – so a PEF study which has agricultural modelling in scope may test the following alternative approach and report the results in an Annex to the PEF report.

The N-balance is calculated using the parameters in Table 4 and the formula below. The total NO3 -N emission to water is considered a variable and its total inventory shall be calculated as:

 

‘Total NO3-N emission to water‘ = ‘NO3 - base loss‘ + ‘additional NO3 -N emissions to water‘, with

 

‘Additional NO3-N emissions to water‘ = ‘N input with all fertilisers‘ + ‘N2 fixation by crop‘ – ‘N-removal with the harvest‘ – ‘NH3 emissions to air‘ – ‘N2O emissions to air‘ – ‘N2 emissions to air‘ -‘NO3 - base loss‘.

If, in certain low-input schemes, the value for ‘additional NO3-N emissions to water’ becomes negative, the value shall be set to ‘0‘. Moreover, in such cases the absolute value of the calculated ‘additional NO3-N emissions to water’ is to be inventoried as additional N-fertiliser input into the system, using the same combination of N-fertilisers as employed for the analysed crop.

This last step serves to avoid fertility-depletion schemes by capturing the N-depletion by the analysed crop that is assumed to lead to the need for additional fertiliser later on and to keep the same soil fertility level.

Table 4

Alternative approach to nitrogen modelling

Emission

Compartment

Value to be applied

NO3 - base loss (synthetic fertiliser and manure)

Water

kg NO3 -= kg N*FracLEACH = 1*0.1*(62/14) = 0.44 kg NO3 -/ kg N applied

N2O (synthetic fertiliser and manure; direct and indirect)

Air

0.022 kg N2O/ kg N fertiliser applied

NH3 - Urea (synthetic fertiliser)

Air

kg NH3= kg N * FracGASF= 1*0.15* (17/14)= 0.18 kg NH3/ kg N fertiliser applied

NH3 - Ammonium nitrate (synthetic fertiliser)

Air

kg NH3= kg N * FracGASF= 1*0.1* (17/14)= 0.12 kg NH3/ kg N fertiliser applied

NH3 - others (synthetic fertiliser)

Air

kg NH3= kg N * FracGASF= 1*0.02* (17/14)= 0.024 kg NH3/ kg N fertiliser applied

NH3 (manure)

Air

kg NH3= kg N*FracGASF= 1*0.2* (17/14)= 0.24 kg NH3/ kg N manure applied

N2-fixation by crop

 

For crops with symbiotic N2-fixation: the fixed amount is assumed to be identical to the N-content in the harvested crop

N2

Air

0.09 kg N2 / kg N applied

4.4.1.6.    Heavy metal emissions

Heavy metal emissions from field inputs shall be modelled as emission to soil and/or leaching or erosion to water. The inventory to water shall specify the oxidation state of the metal (e.g., Cr+3, Cr+6). As crops assimilate part of the heavy metal emissions during their cultivation, clarification is needed on how to model crops that act as a sink.

Two different modelling approaches are allowed:

(a)

The final fate of the heavy metal elementary flows is not further considered within the system boundary: the inventory does not account for the final emissions of the heavy metals and therefore shall not account for the uptake of heavy metals by the crop.

For example, heavy metals in agricultural crops grown for human consumption end up in the plant. Within the EF context, human consumption is not modelled, the final fate is not further modelled and the plant acts as a heavy metal sink. Therefore, the uptake of heavy metals by the crop shall not be modelled.

(b)

The final fate (emission compartment) of the heavy metal elementary flows is considered within the system boundary: the inventory does account for the final emissions (release) of the heavy metals in the environment and therefore shall also account for the uptake of heavy metals by the crop.

For example, heavy metals in agricultural crops grown for feed will mainly end up in the animal digestion and used as manure back on the field where the metals are released in the environment and their impacts are captured by the impact assessment methods. Therefore, the inventory of the agricultural stage shall account for the uptake of heavy metals by the crop. A limited amount ends up in the animal, which may be neglected for simplification.

4.4.1.7.    Rice cultivation

Methane emissions from rice cultivation shall be included, based on the calculation rules in section 5.5. of IPCC (2006)

4.4.1.8.    Peat soils

Drained peat soils shall include carbon dioxide emissions on the basis of a model that relates the drainage levels to annual carbon oxidation.

4.4.1.9.    Other activities

If applicable, the following activities shall be included in agricultural modelling, unless they are allowed to be excluded, based on the cut-off criteria:

(a)

input of seed material (kg/ha),

(b)

input of peat to soil (kg/ha + C/N ratio),

(c)

input of lime (kg CaCO3/ha, type),

(d)

machine use (hours, type) (to be included if there is high level of mechanisation),

(e)

input N from crop residues that stay on the field or are burned (kg residue + N content/ha). Including emissions from residue burning, drying and storage of products.

Unless it is clearly documented that operations are carried out manually, field operations shall be accounted for through total fuel consumption or through inputs of specific machinery, transports to/ from the field, energy for irrigation, or similar.

4.4.2.   Electricity use

Electricity used from the grid shall be modelled as precisely as possible giving preference to supplier-specific data. If (part of) the electricity is renewable, it is important that no double counting occurs. Therefore, the supplier shall guarantee that the electricity supplied to the organisation to produce the product is effectively generated using renewable sources and is not available anymore for other consumers.

4.4.2.1.    General guidelines

The following section introduces two types of electricity mixes: (i) the consumption grid mix which reflects the total electricity mix transferred over a defined grid including green claimed or tracked electricity, and (ii) the residual grid mix, consumption mix (also named residual consumption mix), which characterizes the unclaimed, untracked or publicly shared electricity only.

In PEF studies the following electricity mix shall be used, in hierarchical order:

(a)

Supplier-specific electricity product (24) shall be used if, for a country, there is a 100% tracking system in place, or if :

(i)

available, and

(ii)

the set of minimum criteria to ensure the contractual instruments are reliable is met.

(b)

The supplier-specific total electricity mix shall be used if:

(i)

available, and

(ii)

the set of minimum criteria to ensure the contractual instruments are reliable is met.

(c)

The ‘country-specific residual grid mix, consumption mix’ shall be used. Country-specific means the country in which the life cycle stage or activity occurs. This may be an EU or non-EU country. The residual grid mix prevents double counting with the use of supplier-specific electricity mixes in (a) and (b).

(d)

As a last option, the average EU residual grid mix, consumption mix (EU+EFTA), or region representative residual grid mix, consumption mix, shall be used.

The environmental integrity of the use of supplier-specific electricity mix depends on ensuring that contractual instruments (for tracking) are reliable and unique. Without this, the PEF lacks the accuracy and consistency needed to drive product/corporate electricity procurement decisions and accurate consideration of the supplier-specific mix by buyers of electricity. Therefore, a set of minimum criteria that relate to the integrity of the contractual instruments as reliable conveyers of environmental footprint information has been identified. They represent the minimum features necessary to use supplier-specific mix within PEF studies.

4.4.2.2.    Set of minimum criteria to ensure contractual instruments from suppliers

A supplier-specific electricity product/mix may only be used if the user of the PEF method ensures that the contractual instrument meets the criteria specified below. If contractual instruments do not meet the criteria, then the country-specific residual electricity consumption-mix shall be used in the modelling.

The list of criteria below is based on the criteria of the ‘GHG Protocol Scope 2 Guidance – An amendment to the GHG Protocol Corporate Standard’ (Mary Sotos, World Resource Institute) (25). A contractual instrument used for electricity modelling shall meet the following criteria.

Criterion 1 – convey attributes

Convey the energy type mix associated with the unit of electricity produced.

The energy type mix shall be calculated based on delivered electricity, incorporating certificates sourced and retired (obtained, acquired or withdrawn) on behalf of its customers. Electricity from facilities for which the attributes have been sold off (via contracts or certificates) shall be characterised as having the environmental attributes of the country residual consumption mix where the facility is located.

Criterion 2 – be a unique claim

Be the only instrument that carries the environmental attribute claim associated with that quantity of electricity generated.

Be tracked and redeemed, retired, or cancelled by or on behalf of the company (e.g. by an audit of contracts, third party certification, or handled automatically through other disclosure registries, systems, or mechanisms).

Criterion 3 – be as close as possible to the period to which the contractual instrument is applied

Table 5

Minimum criteria to ensure contractual instruments from suppliers – guidance to fulfil criteria

Criterion 1

CONVEY ENVIRONMENTAL ATTRIBUTES AND GIVE EXPLANATION ABOUT THE CALCULATION METHOD

Convey the energy type mix (or other related environmental attributes) associated with the unit of electricity produced.

Explain the calculation method used to determine this mix.

Context

Each programme or policy will establish their own eligibility criteria and the attributes to be conveyed. These criteria specify energy resource type and certain energy generation facility characteristics, such as type of technology, facility age, or facility location (but differ from one programme/policy to another). These attributes specify the energy resource type and sometimes some energy generation facility characteristics.

Conditions for satisfying the criterion

1.

Convey the energy mix: if there is no energy type mix specified in the contractual instruments, ask your supplier to provide you with this information or other environmental attributes (e.g. GHG emission rate). If the supplier does not respond, use the ‘country-specific residual grid mix, consumption mix’. If the supplier responds, go to step 2).

2.

Explain the calculation method used: ask your supplier to provide details of the calculation method to ensure that they follow the above principle. If your supplier does not provide this information, apply the supplier-specific electricity mix, include the information received and document that it was not possible to check for double counting.

Criterion 2

UNIQUE CLAIMS

Be the only instrument that carries the environmental attribute claim associated with that quantity of electricity generation.

Be tracked and redeemed, retired, or cancelled by or on behalf of the company (e.g. by an audit of contracts, third party certification, or handled automatically through other disclosure registries, systems, or mechanisms).

Context

Certificates generally serve four main purposes: (i) supplier disclosure, (ii) supplier quotas for the delivery or sales of specific energy sources, (iii) tax exemption, and (iv) voluntary consumer programmes.

Each programme or policy will establish their own eligibility criteria. These criteria specify certain energy generation facility characteristics, such as type of technology, facility age, or facility location (but differ from one programme/policy to another one). Certificates shall come from facilities that meet these criteria to be eligible for use in that programme. In addition, individual country markets or policy-making bodies may carry out these different functions using a single certificate system or a multi-certificate system.

Conditions for satisfying the criterion

1.

Is the plant located in a country with no tracking system?

Information provided by the ‘Association of issuing bodies’ (26) should be used.

If yes, use the ‘country-specific residual grid mix, consumption mix’;

If no, go to the second question.

2.

Is the plant located in a country where consumption is partly untracked (> 95%)?

If yes, use the ‘country-specific residual grid mix, consumption mix’ as the best data available to calculate the residual consumption mix;

If no, go to the third question.

3.

Is the plant located in a country with a single certificate system or a multi-certificate system?

If the plant is located in a region/country with a single certificate system the unique claim criteria is met. Use energy type mix mentioned on the contractual instrument.

If the plant is located in a region/country with a multi-certificate system, the unique claim is not ensured. Contact the country-specific issuing body (The European organisation which governs the European Energy Certificate System, http://www.aib-net.org) to find out whether you need to ask for more than one contractual instrument(s) in order to ensure there is no risk of double counting.

If more than one contractual instrument is needed, request all contractual instruments from the supplier to avoid double counting;

If it is not possible to avoid double counting, report this in the PEF study and use the ‘country-specific residual grid mix, consumption mix’.

Criteria 3

Be issued and redeemed as close as possible to the period of electricity consumption to which the contractual instrument is applied.

4.4.2.3.    How to model ‘country-specific residual grid mix, consumption mix’

The user of the PEF method should identify suitable datasets for residual grid mix, consumption mix, each energy type, country and voltage.

If no suitable dataset is available, the following approach should be used: determine the country consumption mix (e.g. X% of MWh produced with hydro energy, Y% of MWh produced with coal power plant) and combine them with LCI datasets per energy type and country/region (e.g. LCI dataset for the production of 1MWh hydro energy in Switzerland).

1)

Activity data related to non-EU country consumption mix per detailed energy type shall be determined based on:

(a)

domestic production mix per production technology;

(b)

import quantity and from which neighbouring countries;

(c)

transmission losses;

(d)

distribution losses;

(e)

type of fuel supply (share of resources used, by import and/or domestic supply).

These data should be found in International Energy Agency (IEA) publications.

2)

Available LCI datasets per fuel technology; the LCI datasets available are generally specific to a country or a region in terms of:

(a)

fuel supply (share of resources used, by import and/ or domestic supply);

(b)

energy carrier properties (e.g. element and energy contents);

(c)

technology standards of power plants regarding efficiency, firing technology, flue-gas desulphurisation, NOx removal and de-dusting.

4.4.2.4.    A single location with multiple products and more than one electricity mix

This section describes how to proceed if only some of the electricity consumed is covered by a supplier-specific mix or on-site electricity generation and how to account for the electricity mix of products produced at the same location. In general, the subdivision of electricity supply used among multiple products is based on a physical relationship (e.g. number of pieces or kg of product). If the consumed electricity comes from more than one electricity mix, each mix source shall be used in terms of its proportion in the total kWh consumed. For example, if a fraction of this total kWh consumed comes from a specific supplier, a supplier-specific electricity mix shall be used for this amount. See Section 4.4.2.7 for on-site electricity use.

A specific type of electricity may be allocated to one specific product with the following conditions.

(a)

If the production (and the related electricity consumption) of a product occurs in a separate site (building), the energy type that is physically related to this site may be used.

(b)

If the production (and the related electricity consumption) of a product occurs in a space shared with specific energy metering or purchase records or electricity bills, the product-specific information (measure, record, bill) may be used.

(c)

If all the products produced in the specific plant are supplied with a publically available PEF study, the company that wants to make the claim related to energy used shall make all PEF studies available. The allocation rule applied shall be described in the PEF study, consistently applied in all PEF studies connected to the site and verified. An example is the 100% allocation of a greener electricity mix to a specific product.

4.4.2.5.    For multiple locations producing one product

In case a product is produced in different locations or sold in different countries, the electricity mix shall reflect the ratios of production or ratios of sales between EU countries/regions. To determine the ratio, a physical unit shall be used (e.g. number of pieces or kg of product). For PEF studies where such data are not available, the average EU residual consumption mix (EU+EFTA), or region-representative residual mix, shall be used. The same general guidelines mentioned above shall be applied.

4.4.2.6.    Electricity use at the use stage

During the use stage, the consumption grid mix shall be used. The electricity mix shall reflect the ratios of sales between EU countries/regions. To determine the ratio, a physical unit shall be used (e.g. number of pieces or kg of product). Where such data are not available, the average EU consumption mix (EU+EFTA), or region-representative consumption mix, shall be used.

4.4.2.7.    On-site electricity generation

If on-site electricity production equals the site’s electricity consumption, two situations apply:

(a)

no contractual instruments have been sold to a third party: the user of the PEF method shall model its own electricity mix (combined with LCI datasets).

(b)

contractual instruments have been sold to a third party: the user of the PEF method shall use ‘country-specific residual grid mix, consumption mix’ (combined with LCI datasets).

If the amount of electricity produced exceeds the amount consumed on-site within the defined system boundary and is sold to, e.g. the electricity grid, this system may be seen as a multi-functional situation. The system will provide two functions (e.g. product + electricity) and the following rules shall be followed.

(a)

If possible, apply subdivision. This applies both to separate electricity productions or to a common electricity production where you may allocate, based on electricity amounts, the upstream and direct emissions to your own consumption and to the share you sell to a third party (e.g. if a company uses a windmill on its production site and exports 30% of the produced electricity, emissions related to 70% of produced electricity should be accounted for in the PEF study).

(b)

If not possible, direct substitution shall be used. The country-specific residual consumption electricity mix shall be used as substitution (27). Subdivision is not considered possible when upstream impacts or direct emissions are closely related to the product itself.

4.4.3.   Transport and logistics

The following parameters shall be taken into account when modelling transport activities.

(1)

Transport type: the type of transport, e.g. by land (truck, rail, pipe), water (boat, ferry, barge), or air (airplane).

(2)

Vehicle type: the type of vehicle by transport type.

(3)

Loading rate (=utilisation ratio; see next section) (28): environmental impacts are directly linked to the actual loading rate, which therefore shall be considered. The loading rate affects the vehicle’s fuel consumption.

(4)

Number of empty returns: the number of empty returns (i.e. the ratio of the distance travelled to collect the next load after unloading the product to the distance travelled to transport the product), when applicable and relevant, shall be taken into account. The kilometres travelled by the empty vehicle shall be allocated to the product. In default transport datasets this is often already taken into account in the default utilisation ratio.

(5)

Transport distance: transport distances shall be documented, applying average transport distances specific to the context being considered.

Within the EF compliant datasets, the fuel production, the fuel consumption by the transport vehicle, the infrastructure needed and the amount of additional resources and tools needed for logistic operations (e.g. cranes and transporters) are included in the transport datasets.

4.4.3.1.    Allocation of impacts from transport – truck transport

EF compliant datasets for truck transport are per tkm (tonne*km) expressing the environmental impact for 1 tonne (t) of product that is transported for 1km in a truck with a certain load. The transport payload (= maximum mass allowed) is indicated in the dataset. For example, a truck of 28-32 t has a payload of 22 t; the LCA dataset for 1 tkm (fully loaded) expresses the environmental impact for 1 t of product that is transported for 1km within a 22 t loaded truck. The transport emissions are allocated based on the transported product’s mass and you get only a share of 1/22 of the truck’s full emissions. When the load transported is lower than the maximum load capacity (e.g. 10 t), the environmental impact for 1 t of product is affected in two ways. First, the truck has less fuel consumption per total load transported and second, its environmental impact is allocated by the load transported (e.g., 1/10 t). When a full freight’s mass is lower than the truck’s load capacity (e.g. 10 t), the transport of the product may be considered volume limited. In this case, the environmental impact shall be calculated using the real mass loaded.

In EF compliant datasets, the transport payload should be modelled in a parameterised way through the utilisation ratio. The utilisation ratio affects (i) the truck’s total fuel consumption and (ii) the allocation to impact per ton. The utilisation ratio is calculated as the kg real load divided by the kg payload and shall be adjusted when the dataset is used. In case the real load is 0 kg, a real load of 1 kg shall be used for the calculation. Empty return trips may be included in the utilisation ratio by taking into account the percentage of empty km driven. E.g., if the truck is fully loaded for delivery but half empty upon its return, the utilisation ratio is: 22 t real load / 22 t payload * 50% km + 11 t real load / 22 t payload * 50% km = 75%.

PEF studies shall specify the utilisation ratio to be used for each type of truck transport modelled and clearly indicate whether the utilisation ratio includes empty return trips. The following default utilisation ratios apply.

(a)

If the load is mass-limited, a default utilisation ratio of 64% (29) shall be used, unless specific data is available. This default utilisation ratio includes empty return trips and thus shall not be modelled separately.

(b)

Bulk transport (e.g., gravel transport from mining pit to concrete plant) shall be modelled with a default utilisation ratio of 50% (100% loaded outbound and 0% loaded inbound), unless specific data is available.

4.4.3.2.    Allocation of impacts from transport – van transport

Vans are often used for home delivery, e.g. delivery of books and clothes or home delivery from retailers. For vans, the limiting factor is volume rather than mass. If no specific information is available to perform the PEF study, a lorry of <1.2 t with a default utilisation ratio of 50% shall be used. In case no dataset for a lorry of <1.2 t is available, a lorry of <7.5 t shall be used as approximation with a utilisation ratio of 20%. A lorry of <7.5 t with a payload of 3.3 t and a utilisation ratio of 20% has the same load as a van with payload of 1.2 t and utilisation ratio of 50%.

4.4.3.3.    Allocation of impacts from transport – consumer transport

Allocation of the car impact shall be based on volume. The maximum volume to be considered for consumer transport is 0.2 m3 (around 1/3 of a trunk of 0.6 m3). For products larger than 0.2 m3 the full car transport impact shall be considered. For products sold through supermarkets or shopping malls, the product volume (including packaging and empty spaces such as between fruits or bottles) shall be used to allocate the transport burdens between the products transported. The allocation factor shall be calculated as the volume of the product transported divided by 0.2 m3. To simplify the modelling, all other types of consumer transport (like buying in specialised shops or using combined trips) shall be modelled as if sold through a supermarket.

4.4.3.4.    Default scenarios – from supplier to factory

For suppliers located within Europe, if no specific data are available to perform the PEF study, then the default data provided below shall be used.

For packaging materials from manufacturing plants to filler plants (beside glass; values based on Eurostat 2015 (30), the following scenario shall be used:

(a)

230 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4);

(b)

280 km by train (average freight train); and

(c)

360 km by ship (barge).

For transport of empty bottles, the following scenario shall be used:

(a)

350 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4);

(b)

39 km by train (average freight train); and

(c)

87 km by ship (barge).

For all other products from supplier to factory (values based on Eurostat 2015 (31), the following scenario shall be used:

(a)

130 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4);

(b)

240 km by train (average freight train); and

(c)

270 km by ship (barge).

For suppliers located outside of Europe, if no specific data are available to perform the PEF study, then the default data provided below shall be used:

(a)

1 000 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4), for the sum of distances from harbour/airport to factory outside and inside Europe;

(b)

18 000 km by ship (transoceanic container) or 10 000 km by plane (cargo);

(c)

if producers’ country (origin) is known, the adequate distance for ship and airplane should be determined using specific calculators (32);

(d)

in case it is not known whether the supplier is located within or outside Europe, transport shall be modelled as if the supplier was located outside of Europe.

4.4.3.5.    Default scenarios – from factory to final client

The transport from factory to final client (including consumer transport) shall be included in the distribution stage of the PEF study. In case no specific information is available, the default scenario outlined below shall be used as a basis. The following values shall be determined by the user of the PEF method (specific information shall be used, unless it is unavailable):

ratio between products sold through retail, distribution centre (DC) and directly to the final client;

for factory to final client: ratio between local, intracontinental and international supply chains;

for factory to retail: distribution between intracontinental and international supply chains.

Figure 3

Default transport scenario

Image 3L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

The following is the default transport scenario from factory to client represented in Figure 3.

1.

X% from factory to final client:

 

X% local supply chain: 1 200 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4)

 

X% intracontinental supply chain: 3 500 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4)

 

X% international supply chain: 1 000 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4) and 18 000 km by ship (transoceanic container). Note that for specific cases, plane or train may be used instead of ship.

2.

X% from factory to retail/distribution centre (DC):

 

X% local supply chain: 1 200 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4)

 

X% intracontinental supply chain: 3 500 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4)

 

X% international supply chain: 1 000 km truck (>32 t, EURO 4), and 18 000 km by ship (transoceanic container). Note that for specific cases, plane or train may be used instead of ship.

3.

X% from DC to final client:

 

100% local: 250 km round trip by van (lorry <7.5 t, EURO 3, utilisation ratio of 20%).

4.

X% from retail to final client:

 

62%: 5 km, by passenger car (average)

 

5%: 5 km round trip, by van (lorry <7.5 t, EURO 3 with utilisation ratio of 20%)

 

33%: no impact modelled.

For reusable products, the return transport from retail/DC to factory shall be modelled in addition to the transport needed to go to retail/ DC. The same transport distances as from product factory to final client shall be used (see above). However the truck utilisation ratio might be volume limited depending on the type of product.

Frozen or cooled products shall be transported in freezers or coolers.

4.4.3.6.    Default scenarios – from EoL collection to EoL treatment

The transport from where products at their EoL are collected to where they are treated may already be included in the landfill, incineration and recycling LCA datasets.

However, there are some cases where additional default data may be needed in the PEF study. The following values shall be used in case no better data is available:

(a)

consumer transport from home to sorting place: 1 km by passenger car;

(b)

transport from collection place to methanisation: 100 km by truck (>32 t, EURO 4);

(c)

transport from collection place to composting: 30 km by truck (lorry <7.5 t, EURO 3).

4.4.4.   Capital goods – infrastructure and equipment

Capital goods (including infrastructure) and their EoL should be excluded, unless there is evidence from previous studies that they are relevant. If capital goods are included, the PEF report shall include a clear and extensive explanation on why they are relevant, reporting all assumptions made.

4.4.5.   Storage at the distribution centre or retail

Storage activities consume energy and refrigerant gases. The following default data shall be used, unless better data is available.

Energy consumption at the distribution centre: the storage energy consumption is 30 kWh/m2·year and 360 MJ bought (= burnt in boiler) or 10 Nm3 natural gas/m2·year (if you use the value per Nm3, do not forget to consider emissions from combustion, not only the production of natural gas). For centres that contain cooling systems, the additional energy use for the chilled or frozen storage is 40 kWh/m3·year (with an assumption of 2 m high for the fridges and freezers). For centres with both ambient and cooled storage: 20% of the DC’s area is chilled or frozen. Note: the energy used for chilled or frozen storage is only the energy used to maintain the temperature.

Energy consumption at retail: General energy consumption of 300 kWh/m2·year for the entire building surface shall be considered as the default. For retail specialised in non-food/non-beverage products, 150 kWh/m2·year for the entire building surface shall be considered. For retail specialised in food/beverage products, 400 kWh/m2·year for the entire building surface plus energy consumption for chilled and frozen storage of 1 900 kWh/m2·year and 2 700 kWh/m2·year respectively is to be considered (PERIFEM and ADEME, 2014).

Refrigerant gases consumption and leakages at DCs with cooling systems: gas content in fridges and freezers is 0.29 kg R404A per m2 (Organization Environmental Footprint Sector Rules for retail sector, retail OEFSR (33). Annual leakage of 10% is considered (Palandre 2003). For the portion of refrigerant gases that remain in the equipment at end of life, 5% is emitted at end of life and the remaining fraction is treated as hazardous waste.

Only the portion of the emissions and resources emitted or used at storage systems shall be allocated to the product stored. This allocation shall be based on the space (in m3) and time (in weeks) occupied by the product stored. For this, the total storage capacity of the system shall be known, and the product-specific volume and storage time shall be used to calculate the allocation factor (as the ratio between product-specific volume*time and storage capacity volume*time).

An average DC is assumed to store 60 000 m3 of product, out of which 48 000 m3 for ambient storage and 12 000 m3 for chilled or frozen storage. For 52 weeks of storage, a default total storage capacity of 3 120 000 m3*weeks/year shall be assumed.

An average retail place is assumed to store 2 000 m3 of products (assuming that 50% of the 2 000 m2 building area is covered by shelves that are 2 m high) over 52 weeks, i.e. 104 000 m3 * weeks/year.

4.4.6.   Sampling procedure

In some cases, the user of the PEF method needs a sampling procedure to limit the data collection to only a representative sample of plants, farms etc. The user of the PEF method shall (i) specify in the PEF report if sampling was applied, (ii) follow the requirements described in this section and (iii) indicate which approach was used.

Examples of cases when the sampling procedure may be needed are those where multiple production sites are involved in producing the same product. E.g. if the same raw material/input material comes from multiple sites or if the same process is outsourced to more than one subcontractor/supplier.

The representative sample shall be derived via a stratified sample, i.e. one that ensures that sub-populations (strata) of a given population are each adequately represented within the whole sample of a research study.

Using a stratified sample allows for more precision than a simple random sample, provided that the sub-populations have been chosen so that the items of the same sub-population are as similar as possible in terms of the characteristics of interest. In addition, a stratified sample guarantees better coverage of the population (34).

The following procedure shall be applied in order to select a representative sample as a stratified sample:

i.

define the population;

ii.

define homogeneous sub-populations (stratification);

iii.

define the sub-samples at the sub-population level;

iv.

define the sample for the population starting from the definition of sub-samples at the sub-population level.

4.4.6.1.    How to define homogeneous sub-populations (stratification)

Stratification is the process of dividing members of the population into homogeneous subgroups (sub-populations) before sampling. The sub-populations should be mutually exclusive: every element in the population shall be assigned to only one sub-population.

The following aspects need to be taken into consideration in identifying the sub-populations:

(a)

geographical distribution of sites;

(b)

technologies/ farming practices involved;

(c)

production capacity of the companies/sites taken into consideration.

Additional aspects to be taken into consideration may be added.

The number of sub-populations shall be calculated as follows:

Nsp = g * t * c [Equation 1]

Nsp: number of sub-populations;

g: number of countries in which the sites/plants/farms are located;

t: number of technologies/farming practices;

c: number of classes of capacity of companies;

In case additional aspects are taken into account, the number of sub-populations is calculated using the above formula and multiplying the result with the numbers of classes identified for each additional aspect (e.g. those sites which have an environmental management or reporting system in place).

Example 1

Identify the number of sub-populations for the following population:

Out of 350 farmers located in the same region in Spain, all have more or less the same annual production and use the same harvesting techniques.

In this case:

g=1

:

all the farmers are located in the same country

t=1

:

all the farmers use the same harvesting techniques

c=1

:

the capacity of the companies is almost the same (i.e. they have the same annual production)

Nsp = g * t * c = 1 * 1 * 1 = 1

Only one sub-population may be identified as coinciding with the population.

Example 2

350 farmers are distributed across three different countries (100 in Spain, 200 in France and 50 in Germany). There are two different harvesting techniques used, and these differ in a relevant way (Spain: 70 technique A, 30 technique B; France: 100 technique A, 100 technique B; Germany: 50 technique A). The capacity of the farmers in terms of annual production varies between 10 000 t and 100 000 t. According to expert judgement / relevant literature, it is estimated that farmers with an annual production lower than 50 000 t are completely different in terms of efficiency compared to the farmers with an annual production higher than 50 000 t. Two classes of companies are defined based on annual production: class 1, if production is lower than 50 000 t and class 2, if production is higher than 50 000 t. (Spain: 80 class 1, 20 class 2; France: 50 class 1, 150 class 2; Germany: 50 class 1).

Table 6 includes the details about the population.

Table 6

Identification of the sub-population for Example 2

Sub-population

Country

Technology

Capacity

1

Spain

100

Technique A

70

Class 1

50

2

Spain

Technique A

Class 2

20

3

Spain

Technique B

30

Class 1

30

4

Spain

Technique B

Class 2

0

5

France

200

Technique A

100

Class 1

20

6

France

Technique A

Class 2

80

7

France

Technique B

100

Class 1

30

8

France

Technique B

Class 2

70

9

Germany

50

Technique A

50

Class 1

50

10

Germany

Technique A

Class 2

0

11

Germany

Technique B

0

Class 1

0

12

Germany

Technique B

Class 2

0

In this case:

g=3

:

three countries

t=2

:

two different harvesting techniques are identified

c=2

:

two classes of production are identified

Nsp = g * t * c = 3 * 2 * 2 = 12

It is possible to identify maximum 12 sub-populations that are summarised in Table 7:

Table 7

Summary of the sub-population for example 2

Sub-population

Country

Technology

Capacity

Number of companies in the sub-population

1

Spain

Technique A

Class 1

50

2

Spain

Technique A

Class 2

20

3

Spain

Technique B

Class 1

30

4

Spain

Technique B

Class 2

0

5

France

Technique A

Class 1

20

6

France

Technique A

Class 2

80

7

France

Technique B

Class 1

30

8

France

Technique B

Class 2

70

9

Germany

Technique A

Class 1

50

10

Germany

Technique A

Class 2

0

11

Germany

Technique B

Class 1

0

12

Germany

Technique B

Class 2

0

4.4.6.2.    How to define sub-sample size at sub-population level

Once the sub-populations have been identified, the sample size of each shall be calculated (the sub-sample size). Two alternative approaches are possible:

i.

Based on the total production of the sub-population

The user of the PEF method shall identify the percentage of production that each sub-population will cover. It shall not be lower than 50%, expressed in the relevant unit. This percentage determines the sample size within the sub-population.

ii.

Based on the number of sites/farms/plants involved in the sub-population

The required sub-sample size shall be calculated using the square root of the sub-population size.

Image 4L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

nSS: required sub-sample size

nSP: sub-population size

The chosen approach shall be specified in the PEF report. The same approach shall be used for all the sub-populations selected.

Example

Table 8

Example: how to calculate the number of companies in each sub-sample

Sub-population

Country

Technology

Capacity

Number of companies in the sub-population

Number of companies in the sample (sub-sample size, [nSS])

1

Spain

Technique A

Class 1

50

7

2

Spain

Technique A

Class 2

20

5

3

Spain

Technique B

Class 1

30

6

4

Spain

Technique B

Class 2

0

0

5

France

Technique A

Class 1

20

5

6

France

Technique A

Class 2

80

9

7

France

Technique B

Class 1

30

6

8

France

Technique B

Class 2

70

8

9

Germany

Technique A

Class 1

50

7

10

Germany

Technique A

Class 2

0

0

11

Germany

Technique B

Class 1

0

0

12

Germany

Technique B

Class 2

0

0

4.4.6.3.    How to define the sample for the population

The representative sample of the population corresponds to the sum of the sub-samples at the sub-population level.

4.4.6.4.    What to do in case rounding is necessary

If rounding is necessary, the general rule used in mathematics shall be applied:

(a)

If the number you are rounding is followed by 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9, round the number up.

(b)

If the number you are rounding is followed by 0, 1, 2, 3, or 4, round the number down.

4.4.7.   Modelling requirements for the use stage

The use stage often involves multiple processes. A distinction shall be made between (i) product independent and (ii) product dependent processes.

(i)

Product independent processes have no relationship with the way the product is designed or distributed. The impacts of the use stage process will remain the same for all products in this product (sub-)category even if the producer changes the product's characteristics. Therefore, they do not contribute to any form of differentiation between two products or might even hide the difference. Examples are: the use of glass for drinking wine (considering that the product does not determine a difference in glass use); frying time when using olive oil; energy use for boiling one litre of water used for preparing coffee made from bulk instant coffee; and the washing machine used for heavy laundry detergents (capital good).

(ii)

Product dependent processes are directly or indirectly determined or influenced by the product design or are related to instructions for using the product. These processes depend on the product characteristics and therefore help differentiate two products. All instructions provided by the producer and directed towards the consumer (through labels, websites or other media) shall be considered product dependent. Examples of instructions are: indications on how long the food must be cooked, how much water must be used, or in the case of drinks, the recommended serving temperature and storage conditions. An example of a direct dependent process is the energy used by electrical equipment under normal conditions.

Product dependent processes shall be included in the system boundary of the PEF study. Product independent processes shall be excluded from the system boundary and qualitative information may be provided.

For final products, the LCIA results shall be reported for (i) the total life cycle and (ii) the total life cycle excluding the use stage.

4.4.7.1.    Main function approach or delta approach

The modelling of the use stage may be done in different ways. Very often the related impacts and activities are modelled fully, e.g. the total electricity consumption when using a coffee machine, or the total cooking time and related gas consumption when boiling pasta. In these cases, the use stage processes for drinking coffee or eating pasta are related to the product’s main function (referred to as ‘main function approach’).

In some cases, the use of one product may influence the environmental impact of another, as described in the following examples.

(a)

A toner cartridge is not ‘responsible’ for the paper it prints on. But if a remanufactured toner cartridge works less efficiently and causes more paper loss compared to an original cartridge, the additional paper loss should be considered. In that case, the paper loss is a product-dependent process of the use stage of a remanufactured cartridge.

(b)

The energy consumption during the use stage of the battery/charger system is not related to the amount of energy stored and released from the battery. It only refers to the energy loss in each loading cycle, which may be caused by the loading system or the internal losses in the battery.

In these cases, only the additional activities and processes should be allocated to the product (e.g. paper and energy for the remanufactured toner cartridge and battery respectively). The allocation method involves taking all associated products in the system (in this case paper and energy), and allocating the excess consumption of these associated products to the product which is considered responsible for this excess. This requires a reference amount of consumption to be set for each associated product (e.g. of energy and materials), which refers to the minimum consumption that is essential for providing the function. The consumption above this reference (the delta) will then be allocated to the product (referred to as ‘Delta approach’) (35).

This approach shall only be used to increase impacts and to account for additional consumption above the reference. To set the reference situation, the following shall be considered, if available:

(a)

regulations applicable to the product in scope;

(b)

standards or harmonised standards;

(c)

recommendations from manufacturers or manufacturers' organisations;

(d)

use agreements established by consensus in sector-specific working groups.

The user of the PEF method can decide which approach is taken and shall describe the one applied in the PEF report (main function approach or delta approach).

4.4.7.2.    Modelling the use stage

Part D of Annex II provides default data to be used to model use stage activities. If available, better data should be used, and shall be made transparent and justified in the PEF report.

4.4.8.   Recycled content and end of life modelling

The recycled content and end of life shall be modelled using the circular footprint formula (CFF) at the life-cycle stage where the activity occurs. The following sections describe the formula and parameters to be used and how they shall be applied to final and intermediate products (Section 4.4.8.12).

4.4.8.1.    The circular footprint formula (CFF)

The circular footprint formula is a combination of ‘material + energy + disposal’, i.e.:

Equation 3

The circular footprint formula (CFF)

Image 5L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

Parameters of the CFF

A

:

allocation factor of burdens and credits between supplier and user of recycled materials.

B

:

allocation factor of energy recovery processes. It applies both to burdens and credits.

Qsin

:

quality of the ingoing secondary material, i.e. the quality of the recycled material at the point of substitution.

Qsout

:

quality of the outgoing secondary material, i.e. the quality of the recyclable material at the point of substitution.

Qp

:

quality of the primary material, i.e. quality of the virgin material.

R1

:

the proportion of material in the input to the production that has been recycled from a previous system.

R2

:

the proportion of the material in the product that will be recycled (or reused) in a subsequent system. Therefore, R2 shall take into account the inefficiencies in the collection and recycling (or reuse) processes. R2 shall be measured at the output of the recycling plant.

R3

:

the proportion of the material in the product that is used for energy recovery at EoL.

Erecycled (Erec)

:

specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the recycling process of the recycled (reused) material, including collection, sorting and transportation process.

ErecyclingEoL (ErecEoL)

:

specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the recycling process at EoL, including the collection, sorting and transportation processes.

Ev

:

specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the acquisition and pre-processing of virgin material.

E*v

:

specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the acquisition and pre-processing of virgin material assumed to be substituted by recyclable materials.

EER

:

specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the energy recovery process (e.g. incineration with energy recovery, landfill with energy recovery, etc.).

ESE,heat and ESE,elec

:

specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) that would have arisen from the specific substituted energy source, heat and electricity respectively.

ED

:

specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the disposal of waste material at the analysed product’s EoL, without energy recovery.

XER,heat and XER,elec

:

the efficiency of the energy recovery process for both heat and electricity.

LHV

:

lower heating value of the material in the product used for energy recovery.

Users of the PEF method shall report all the parameters used. Default values for some parameters (A, R1, R2, R3 and Qs/Qp for packaging) are available in Part C of Annex II (see following sections for further details): users of the PEF method shall refer to the version of Part C of Annex II they are using (36).

4.4.8.2.    The A factor

The A factor allocates burdens and credits from recycling and virgin material production between two life cycles (i.e. the one supplying and the one using recycled material) and it aims to reflect market realities.

An A factor equal to 1 would reflect a 100:0 approach (i.e. credits are given only to the recycled content), while an A factor equal to 0 would reflect a 0:100 approach (i.e. credits are given only to the recyclable materials at the EoL).

In PEF studies the A factor values shall be in the range 0.2 ≤ A ≤ 0.8, to always capture both aspects of recycling (recycled content and recyclability at EoL).

The driver determining the values of the A factor is the analysis of the market situation. This means:

1)

A = 0.2 – low supply of recyclable materials and high demand: the formula focuses on recyclability at EoL;

2)

A = 0.8 – high supply of recyclable materials and low demand: the formula focuses on recycled content.

3)

A = 0.5 – equilibrium between supply and demand: the formula focuses both on recyclability at EoL and recycled content.

Default application-specific and material-specific A values are available in Part C of Annex II. The following procedure shall be applied (in hierarchical order) to select the value of A to be used in a PEF study:

1)

check in Part C of Annex II the availability of an application-specific A value which fits the PEF study;

2)

if an application-specific A value is not available, the material-specific A value in Part C of Annex II shall be used;

3)

if a material-specific A value is not available, the user shall apply an A value of 0.5.

4.4.8.3.    The B factor

The B factor is used as an allocation factor of energy recovery processes. It applies both to burdens and credits. Credits refer to the amount of heat and electricity sold, not to the total energy produced, taking into account relevant variations over a 12-month period, e.g. for heat.

In PEF studies, the B value shall, by default, be equal to 0, unless another appropriate value is available in part C of Annex II.

To avoid double-counting between the current and the subsequent system in case of energy recovery, the subsequent system shall model its own energy use from energy recovery processes as primary energy (if the B value has been set at a value other than 0 in the upstream system, the user of the PEF method shall ensure that no double counting occurs).

4.4.8.4.    The point of substitution

It is necessary to determine the point of substitution to apply the ‘material’ part of the formula. The point of substitution is to the point in the value chain where secondary materials substitute for primary materials.

The point of substitution should be identified in correspondence to the process where input flows come from 100% primary sources and 100% secondary sources (level 1 in Figure 4). In some cases, the point of substitution may be identified after some mixing of primary and secondary material flows has occurred (level 2 in Figure 4).

Point of substitution at level 1: this corresponds to e.g. the point where metal scrap, glass cullet and pulp are added to the process.

Point of substitution at level 2: this corresponds to e.g. the point where metal ingots, glass and paper are added to the process.

The point of substitution at this level may be applied only if the datasets used to model, e.g. Erec and Ev, take into account the real (average) flows regarding primary and secondary material. For example, if Erec corresponds to the ‘production of 1 t of secondary material‘ (see Figure 4) and it has an average input of 10% from primary raw materials, the amount of primary materials, together with their environmental burdens, shall be included in the Erec dataset.

Figure 4

Point of substitution at level 1 and level 2

Image 6L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

Figure 4 is a schematic representation of a generic situation (flows are 100% primary and 100% secondary). In practice, in some situations more than one point of substitution may be identified at different steps in the value chain, as represented in Figure 5, where e.g. scrap of two different qualities is processed at different steps.

Figure 5

Example of point of substitutions at different steps in the value chain.

Image 7L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

4.4.8.5.    The quality ratios: Qsin/Qp and Qsout/Qp

Two quality ratios are used in the CFF, to take into account the quality of both the ingoing and the outgoing recycled materials: Qsin/Qp and Qsout/Qp.

Two different cases are highlighted.

(a)

If Ev=E*v, the two quality ratios are needed: Qsin/Qp associated to the recycled content, and Qsout/Qp associated to recyclability at EoL. The quality factors are there to capture the downcycling of a material compared to the original primary material and, in some cases, may capture the effect of multiple recycling loops.

(b)

If Ev≠E*v, one quality ratio is needed: Qsin/Qp associated to the recycled content. In this case, E*v refers to the functional unit of the material substituted in a specific application. For example, plastic recycled to produce a bench modelled via substitution of cement shall also take into account the ‘how much’, ‘how long’ and ‘how well’. Therefore, the E*v parameter indirectly integrates the Qsout/Qp parameter, and therefore the Qsout and Qp parameters are not part of the CFF.

The quality ratios shall be determined at the point of substitution and per application or material.

The quantification of the quality ratios shall be based on the following.

(a)

Economic aspects: i.e. price ratio of secondary compared to primary materials at the point of substitution. If the price of secondary materials is higher than that of primary ones, the quality ratios shall be set equal to 1.

(b)

When economic aspects are less relevant than physical aspects, the latter may be used.

Packaging materials used by industry are often the same within different sectors and product groups: Part C of Annex II provides one worksheet with Qsin/Qp and Qsout/Qp values applicable to packaging materials. The company conducting a PEF study may use different values, which shall be made transparent and justified in the PEF report.

4.4.8.6.    Recycled content (R1)

The R1 values applied shall be company-specific or default secondary (application-specific), depending on the information available to the company conducting the PEF study. Default secondary (application-specific) R1 values are available in Part C of Annex II. The following procedure shall be applied (in hierarchical order) to select the value of R1 to be used in a PEF study.

(a)

Company-specific values shall be used either when the process is run by the company conducting the PEF study or when the process is not run by the company conducting the PEF study but that company has access to (company-) specific information. (Situation 1 and Situation 2 of the Data Needs Matrix, see Section 4.6.5.4).

(b)

In all other cases, the default secondary R1 values of Part C of Annex II (application-specific) shall be applied.

(c)

When no application-specific value is available in Part C of Annex II, R1 shall be set to 0% (material-specific values based on supply market statistics are not accepted as a proxy and therefore shall not be used).

The applied R1 values shall be subject to PEF study verification.

4.4.8.7.    Guidelines when using company-specific R1 values

When using company-specific R1 values other than 0, traceability throughout the supply chain is mandatory. The following general guidelines shall be followed:

1)

the supplier information (through e.g., statement of conformity or delivery note) shall be maintained during all the production and delivery stages at the converter;

2)

once the material is delivered to the converter for producing the end products, the converter shall handle information through their regular administrative procedures;

3)

the converter for producing the end products claiming recycled content shall demonstrate through its management system the percentage of recycled input material into the respective end product(s).

4)

The latter demonstration shall be transferred upon request to the person using the end product. If a PEF profile is calculated and reported, this shall be stated as additional technical information of the PEF profile.

5)

Industry- or company-owned traceability systems may be applied as long as they cover the general guidelines outlined above. If not, they shall be supplemented with the general guidelines above.

For the packaging industry, the following industry-specific guidelines are recommended.

1)

For the container glass industry: the European Commission Regulation No 1179/2012. This Regulation requests a statement of conformity delivered by the cullet producer.

2)

For the paper industry: the European Recovered Paper Identification System (CEPI – Confederation of European Paper Industries, 2008). This document prescribes rules and guidance on necessary information and steps, with a delivery note that shall be received by the mill operator.

3)

For beverage cartons no recycled content is used so far. If needed, the same guidelines used for paper shall be used in this case as they are the most suitable (beverage cartons are covered by a recovered paper grade category under the European list of waste paper grades, EN643).

4)

For the plastics industry: EN standard 15343:2007. This standard prescribes rules and guidelines on traceability. The supplier of the recyclate is requested to provide specific information.

4.4.8.8.    Guidelines on how to deal with pre-consumer scrap

When dealing with pre-consumer scrap, two options may be applied.

Option 1: the impacts to produce the input material that leads to the pre-consumer scrap in question shall be allocated to the product system that generated this scrap. Scrap is claimed as pre-consumer recycled content. Process boundaries and modelling requirements applying the CFF are shown in Figure 6.

Figure 6

Modelling option when pre-consumer scrap is claimed as pre-consumer recycled content

Image 8L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

Option 2: Any material that circulates within a process chain or pool of process chains is excluded from being defined as recycled content and is not included in R1. Scrap is not claimed as pre-consumer recycled content. Process boundaries and modelling requirements applying the CFF are shown in Figure 7.

Figure 7

Modelling option when pre-consumer scrap is not claimed as pre-consumer recycled content

Image 9L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

4.4.8.9.    Recycling output rate (R2)

The R2 parameter refers to the ‘recycling output rate’: Figure 8 provides a visual representation. Often, values are available for point 8 (37) in Figure 8, therefore such values shall be modified to match the actual output recycling rate (point 10) taking into account possible process losses. In Figure 8, the output recycling rate (R2) corresponds to point 10.

Figure 8

Simplified collection recycling scheme of a material

Image 10L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

A product’s design and composition will determine whether if its material is actually suitable for recycling. Therefore, before selecting the appropriate R2 value, an evaluation of the material’s recyclability shall be made and the PEF study shall include a statement on the recyclability of the materials/products.

The statement on recyclability shall be provided together with an evaluation for recyclability that includes evidence for the following three criteria (as described by EN ISO 14021:2016, Section 7.7.4 ‘Evaluation methodology’).

1)

The collection, sorting and delivery systems to transfer the materials from the source to the recycling facility are conveniently available to a reasonable proportion of the purchasers, potential purchasers and users of the product.

2)

Recycling facilities to accommodate the collected materials exist;

3)

Evidence is available to show that the product for which recyclability is claimed is being collected and recycled. For PET bottles, the European PET Bottle Platform (EPBP) guidelines should be used (https://www.epbp.org/design-guidelines), while for generic plastics, the recyclability by design should be used (www.recoup.org).

If one criterion is not fulfilled, or the sector-specific recyclability guidelines indicate limited recyclability, an R2 value of 0% shall be applied. Point (1) and (3) may be proven by recycling statistics, which should be country- specific derived from industry associations or national bodies. Approximation to evidence at point (3) may be provided by applying, for example, the design for evaluating recyclability outlined in EN 13430 Material recycling (Annexes A and B) or other sector-specific recyclability guidelines if available.

Default application-specific R2 values are available in Part C of Annex II. The following procedure shall be followed to select the R2 value to be used in a PEF study:

(a)

Company-specific values shall be used when available, after recyclability has been evaluated.

(b)

If no company-specific values are available and the criteria used for evaluating recyclability are fulfilled (see above), application-specific R2 values shall be used selecting the appropriate value available in Part C of Annex II:

if an R2 value is not available for a specific country, then the European average shall be used;

if an R2 value is not available for a specific application, the R2 values of the material shall be used (e.g. materials’ average);

In case no R2 values are available, R2 shall be set equal to 0.

Note that new R2 values may be provided to the Commission to be implemented in Part C of Annex II. Newly proposed R2 values (based on new statistics) shall be provided together with a study report indicating the sources and calculations, and reviewed by an external independent third party. The Commission will decide if the new values are acceptable and can be implemented in an updated version of Part C of Annex II. Once the new R2 values are integrated into Part C of Annex II, they may be used by any PEF study.

The applied R2 values shall be subject to verification.

4.4.8.10.    The R3 value

The R3 value is the proportion of the product’s material that is used for energy recovery at EoL. The R3 values applied shall be company-specific or default values taken from Part C of Annex II, depending on the information available to the company conducting the PEF study. The following procedure shall be applied (in hierarchical order) to select the R3 value to be used in a PEF study.

(a)

Company-specific values shall be used when the process is run by the company conducting the PEF study or when the process is not run by the company conducting the PEF study but that company has access to (company-)specific information (Situation 1 and Situation 2 of the DNM, see Section 4.6.5.4).

(b)

In all other cases, the default secondary R3 values of Part C of Annex II shall be applied.

(c)

When no value is available in Part C of Annex II, new values can be used for R3 (using statistics or other data sources) or shall be set to 0%.

The applied R3 values shall be subject to verification.

4.4.8.11.    Erecycled (Erec) and ErecyclingEoL (ErecEoL)

Erec and ErecEoL are the specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the recycling process of the recycled material and at EoL, respectively. The system boundary of Erec and ErecEoL shall take into account all the emissions and resources consumed starting from collection up to the defined point of substitution.

If the point of substitution is identified at ‘level 2’ Erec and ErecEoL shall be modelled using the real input flows. Therefore, if a portion of the input flows are from primary raw materials, it shall be included in the datasets used to model Erec and ErecEoL.

In some cases, Erec may correspond to ErecEoL, for example, in cases where close loops occur.

4.4.8.12.    E*v

E*v are the specific emissions and resources consumed (per functional unit) arising from the acquisition and pre-processing of virgin material assumed to be substituted by recyclable materials. When default E*v equals Ev, the user shall assume that a recyclable material at EoL is replacing the same virgin material which was used at the input side to produce the recyclable material.

When E*v is different from Ev., the user shall provide evidence that recyclable material is substituting a different virgin material than the one producing the recyclable material.

If E*v ≠ Ev, E*v represents the actual amount of virgin material substituted by the recyclable material. In such cases, E*v is not multiplied by Qsout/Qp, because this parameter is indirectly taken into account when calculating the ‘actual amount’ of virgin material substituted. Such an amount shall be calculated taking into account that the virgin material substituted and the recyclable material fulfil the same function in terms of ‘how long’ and ‘how well’. E*v shall be determined based on evidence of actual substitution of the selected virgin material.

4.4.8.13.    How to apply the formula to intermediate products (cradle-to-gate studies)

In cradle-to-gate PEF studies, the parameters related to the product’s EoL (i.e. recyclability at EoL, energy recovery, disposal) shall not be accounted for.

If the formula is applied in PEF studies for intermediate products (cradle-to-gate studies), the user of the PEF study shall:

1)

use Equation 3 (CFF);

2)

exclude the EoL by setting the parameters R2, R3, and Ed equal to 0, for the products in scope;

3)

use and report the results with two A values for the product in scope:

(a)

Setting A = 1: to be used as the default in calculating the PEF profile. This value applies only to the recycled content of the product in scope. The purpose of this setting is to enable the hotspot analysis to be focused on the actual system.

(b)

Setting A = the application- or material-specific default values: these results shall be reported as 'additional technical information' and used when creating EF compliant datasets. The purpose of this setting is to enable the correct A value to be used when the dataset is used in future modelling.

Table 9 provides a summary on how to apply the CFF, depending on a study focusing on final products, or intermediate products.

Table 9

Summary table on how to apply the CFF in different situations

A value

Final products

Intermediates

A = 1

-

shall (hotspot and PEF profile)

A = default

shall

shall (additional technical info. and EF compliant dataset)

4.4.8.14.    How to deal with specific aspects

Recovery of bottom ash or slag from incineration

Recovery of bottom ash or slag shall be included in the R2 value (recycling output rate) of the original product/ material. Their treatment is within the ErecEoL.

Landfilling and incineration with energy recovery

Whenever a process, such as landfilling with energy recovery or municipal solid waste incineration with energy recovery, leads to energy recovery, it shall be modelled under the ‘energy’ part in Equation 3 (CFF). The credit is calculated based on the amount of output energy that is used outside the process.

Municipal solid waste

Part C of Annex II contains default values per country that shall be used to quantify the share going to landfilling and the share going to incineration unless supply-chain specific values are available.

Compost and anaerobic digestion/ sewage treatment

Compost, including digestate coming out of the anaerobic digestion, shall be treated in the ‘material’ part (Equation 3) like recycling with A = 0.5. The energy part of the anaerobic digestion shall be treated as a normal process of energy recovery under the ‘energy’ part of

Equation 3 (CFF).

Waste materials used as fuel

When waste material is used as a fuel (e.g. waste plastic used as fuel in cement kilns), it shall be treated as an energy recovery process under the ‘energy’ part of

Equation 3 (CFF).

Modelling complex products

When considering complex products (e.g. printed wiring boards) with complex EoL management, the default datasets for EoL treatment processes may already implement the CFF. The default values of the parameters shall refer to the ones in Part C of Annex II and shall be available as metadata information in the dataset. The bill of material (BoM) should be taken as a starting point for calculations if no default data is available.

Reuse and refurbishment

If the reuse/refurbishment of a product results in a product with different product specifications (providing another function), this shall be considered as part of the CFF, as a form of recycling. Old parts that were changed during refurbishment shall be modelled under the CFF.

In this case, reuse/refurbishment activities fall under the ErecEoL parameter, while the alternative function provided (or the avoided production of parts or components) falls under the E*v parameter.

4.4.9.   Extended product lifetime

Extending a product’s lifetime due to reuse or refurbishment may result in the following.

1.

A product with the original product specifications (providing the same function).

In this situation, the product lifetime is extended to a product with the original product specifications (providing the same function) and shall be included in the FU and reference flow. The user of the PEF method shall describe how reuse or refurbishment is included in calculating the reference flow and the full life-cycle model, taking into account the ‘how long’ of the FU.

2.

A product with different product specifications (providing another function).

This shall be considered as part of the CFF, as a form of recycling (see Section 4.4.8.13. How to apply the formula to intermediate products (cradle-to-gate studies)). Also, old parts that have been changed during refurbishment shall be modelled under the CFF.

4.4.9.1.    Reuse rates (situation 1 in Section 4.4.9)

The reuse rate is the number of times a material is used at the factory. This is also often called trip rates, reuse time or number of rotations. This may be expressed as the absolute number of reuse or as % of reuse rate.

For example: a reuse rate of 80% equals 5 reuses. Equation 4 describes the conversion:

Image 11L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

The number of reuses applied here refers to the total number of uses during the life of the material. It includes both the first use and all of the following reuses.

4.4.9.2    How to apply and model the ‘reuse rate’ (situation 1 in Section 4.4.9)

The number of times a material is reused affects the product’s environmental profile at different life-cycle stages. The following five steps explain how the user shall model the different life-cycle stages with reusable materials, using packaging as an example.

1.

Raw material acquisition: the reuse rate determines the quantity of packaging material consumed per product sold. The raw material consumption shall be calculated by dividing the actual weight of the packaging by the number of times this packaging is reused. For example, a 1 l glass bottle weighs 600 grams and is reused 10 times (reuse rate of 90%). The raw material use per litre is 60 grams (= 600 grams per bottle / 10 reuses).

2.

Transport from packaging manufacturer to the product factory (where the products are packed): The reuse rate determines the quantity of transport that is needed per product sold. The transport impact shall be calculated by dividing the one-way trip impact by the number of times the packaging is reused.

3.

Transport from product factory to final client and back: in addition to the transport needed to go to the client, the return transport shall also be taken into account. To model the total transport, see Section 4.4.3 on modelling transport.

4.

At the product factory: once the empty packaging is returned to the product factory, energy and resource use shall be taken into consideration as regards cleaning, repairing or refilling (if applicable).

5.

Packaging EoL: the reuse rate determines the quantity of packaging material (per product sold) to be treated at the EoL. The amount of packaging treated at the EoL shall be calculated by dividing the actual weight of the packaging by the number of times it was reused.

4.4.9.3.    Packaging reuse rates

A packaging return system is organised by:

1.

the company that owns the packaging material (company-owned pools); or

2.

a third party e.g. the government or a pooler (third party operated pools).

This may affect the material’s lifetime as well as the data source to be used. Therefore, it is important to separate these two return systems.

For company-owned packaging pools, the reuse rate shall be calculated using supply chain specific data. Depending on the data available within the company, two different calculation approaches may be used (see option ‘a’ and option ‘b’ below). Returnable glass bottles are used as an example but the calculations also apply for another company-owned reusable packaging.

Option ‘a’: use supply-chain-specific data, based on accumulated experience over the lifetime of the previous glass bottle pool. This is the most accurate way of calculating the reuse rate of bottles for the previous bottle pool and is a proper estimate for the current bottle pool. The following supply chain-specific data is collected.

1.

Number of bottles filled during the bottle pool’s lifetime (#Fi)

2.

Number of bottles at initial stock plus purchased over the bottle pool’s lifetime (#B)

Image 12L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

Image 13L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

This calculation option shall be used:

(i)

With data from the previous bottle pool when the previous and current bottle pool are comparable, meaning, the same product category, similar bottle characteristics (e.g. size), comparable return systems (e.g. collection methods, same consumer group and outlet channels), etc.

(ii)

With data from the current bottle pool when future estimations/extrapolations are available on (i) the bottle purchases, (ii) the volumes sold, and (iii) the bottle pool’s lifetime.

The data shall be supply-chain-specific and shall be verified during the verification and validation process, including the reasoning for the method choice.

Option ‘b’: If no real data is tracked, the calculation shall be done partly based on assumptions. This option is less accurate due to the assumptions made and therefore conservative/safe estimates shall be used. The following data is needed.

1.

Average number of rotations of a single bottle, during one calendar year (if not broken). One loop consists of filling, delivery, use and return to the company for washing (#Rot).

2.

Estimated lifetime of the bottle pool (LT, in years).

3.

Average percentage of loss per rotation. This refers to the sum of losses at the consumer stage and the bottles scrapped at filling sites (%Los).

Image 14L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

This calculation option shall be used when option ‘a’ is not applicable (e.g. the previous pool cannot be used as a reference). The data used shall be verified during the verification and validation process, including the reason for choosing between option ‘a’ and option ‘b’.

4.4.9.4    Average reuse rates for company-owned pools

PEF studies that have company owned reusable packaging pools in scope shall use company specific reuse rates, calculated following the rules outlined in Section 4.4.9.3.

4.4.9.5    Average reuse rates for third party operated pools

The following reuse rates shall be used in those PEF studies that have third party operated reusable packaging pools in scope, unless better quality data are available:

a)

glass bottles: 30 trips for beer and water, 5 trips for wine (38);

b)

plastic crates for bottles: 30 trips (39);

c)

plastic pallets: 50 trips (Nederlands Instituut voor Bouwbiologie en Ecologie, 2014) (40);

d)

wooden pallets: 25 trips (Nederlands Instituut voor Bouwbiologie en Ecologie, 2014) (41).

The user of the PEF method may use other values if they are justified and data sources are provided.

The user of the PEF method shall indicate if company-owned or third party operated pools were in scope and which calculation method or default reuse rates were used.

4.4.10   Greenhouse gases emissions and removals

The PEF method distinguishes three main categories of greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions and removals, each contributing to levels within a specific sub-category within the impact category of 'climate change':

1.

fossil GHG emissions and removals (contributing to the sub-category ‘Climate change – fossil’);

2.

biogenic carbon emissions and removals (contributing to the sub-category ‘Climate change – biogenic’);

3.

carbon emissions from land use and land use change (contributing to the sub-category ‘Climate change – land use and land use change’).

Currently, credits associated with temporary and permanent carbon storage and/or delayed emissions shall not be considered in the calculation of the climate change indicator. This means that all emissions and removals shall be considered as emitted ‘now’, and there is no discounting of emissions over time (in line with EN ISO 14067:2018). Developments will be considered in order to keep the method updated with scientific evidence and expert-based consensus.

The sub-categories ‘climate change – fossil’, ‘climate change – biogenic’ and ‘climate change - land use and land transformation’, shall be reported separately if they show a contribution of more than 5% (42) each to the total score of climate change.

4.4.10.1    Sub-category 1: Climate change – fossil

This category covers GHG emissions to any media originating from the oxidation and/or reduction of fossil fuels by means of their transformation or degradation (e.g. combustion, digestion, landfilling, etc.). This impact category includes emissions from peat (used as a fuel) and calcination, and uptakes due to carbonation.

Fossil CO2 uptake and corresponding emissions (e.g. due to carbonation) shall be modelled in a simplified way when calculating the PEF profile (meaning no emissions or uptakes shall be modelled). When knowledge about the amount of fossil CO2 uptake is required for additional environmental information, the CO2 uptake may be modelled with the flow ‘carbon dioxide (fossil), resources from air’.

The flows falling under this definition shall be modelled consistently with the elementary flows in the most updated EF reference package and use names that end with ‘(fossil)’, if available (e.g. ‘carbon dioxide (fossil)’ and ‘methane (fossil)’).

4.4.10.2.    Sub-category 2: Climate change – biogenic

This sub-category covers (i) carbon emissions to air (CO2, CO and CH4) originating from the oxidation and/or reduction of aboveground biomass by means of its transformation or degradation (e.g. combustion, digestion, composting, landfilling), and (ii) CO2 uptake from the atmosphere through photosynthesis during biomass growth, i.e. corresponding to the carbon content of products, biofuels or above-ground plant residues such as litter and dead wood. Carbon exchanges from native forests (43) shall be modelled under sub-category 3 (including connected soil emissions, derived products or residues).

Modelling requirements: the flows falling under this definition shall be modelled consistently with the elementary flows in the most recent version of the EF package and use flow names that end with ‘(biogenic)’. Mass allocation shall be applied to model the biogenic carbon flows.

A simplified modelling approach should be used only if the flows which influence the results of climate change impact (namely biogenic methane emissions) are modelled. This option may apply, for example, to food PEF studies as it avoids modelling human digestion while eventually arriving at a zero balance. In this case, the following rules apply:

(i)

only the emission ‘methane (biogenic)’ is modelled;

(ii)

no further biogenic emissions and uptakes from the atmosphere are modelled;

(iii)

if methane emissions are both fossil and biogenic, the release of biogenic methane shall be modelled first, followed by the remaining fossil methane.

For intermediate products (cradle-to-gate), the biogenic carbon content at the factory gate (physical content) shall always be reported as ‘additional technical information’.

4.4.10.3.    Sub-category 3: Climate change – land use and land use change (LULUC)

This sub-category accounts for carbon uptakes and emissions (CO2, CO and CH4) originating from carbon stock changes caused by land use change and land use. This sub-category includes biogenic carbon exchanges from deforestation, road construction or other soil activities (including soil carbon emissions). For native forests, all related CO2 emissions are included and modelled under this sub-category (including connected soil emissions, products derived from native forests (44) and residues), while their CO2 uptake is excluded.

A distinction is made between direct and indirect land use change. Direct land use change occurs as the result of a transformation from one land use type into another, which takes place in a particular/certain piece of land cover, possibly leading to changes in the carbon stock of that specific piece of land, but not in other systems. Examples of direct land use change are the conversion of land used for growing crops to industrial use or conversion from forestland to cropland.

Indirect land use change occurs when a certain change in land use, or in the use of the feedstock grown on a given piece of land, causes changes in land use outside the system boundary, i.e. in other land use types. The PEF method only considers direct land use change, while indirect land use change, due to the lack of an agreed methodology, shall not be taken into account in PEF studies. Indirect land use change may be included under additional environmental information.

Modelling requirements: the flows falling under this definition shall be modelled consistently with the elementary flows in the most recent version of the EF package and use the flow names that end with ‘(land use change)’. Biogenic carbon uptakes and emissions shall be inventoried separately for each elementary flow. For land use change: all carbon emissions and removals shall be modelled following the modelling guidelines of PAS 2050:2011 (BSI 2011) and the supplementary document PAS2050-1:2012 (BSI 2012) for horticultural products.

Quoting PAS 2050:2011 (BSI 2011):

‘Large emissions of GHGs can result as a consequence of land use change. Removals as a direct result of land use change (and not as a result of long-term management practices) do not usually occur, although it is recognized that this could happen in specific circumstances. Examples of direct land use change are the conversion of land used for growing crops to industrial use or conversion from forestland to cropland. All forms of land use change that result in emissions or removals are to be included. Indirect land use change refers to such conversions of land use as a consequence of changes in land use elsewhere. While GHG emissions also arise from indirect land use change, the methods and data requirements for calculating these emissions are not fully developed. Therefore, the assessment of emissions arising from indirect land use change is not included.

The GHG emissions and removals arising from direct land use change shall be assessed for any input to the life cycle of a product originating from that land and shall be included in the assessment of GHG emissions. The emissions arising from the product shall be assessed on the basis of the default land use change values provided in PAS 2050:2011 Annex C, unless better data is available. For countries and land use changes not included in this annex, the emissions arising from the product shall be assessed using the included GHG emissions and removals occurring as a result of direct land use change in accordance with the relevant sections of the IPCC (2006). The assessment of the impact of land use change shall include all direct land use change occurring not more than 20 years, or a single harvest period, prior to undertaking the assessment (whichever is the longer). The total GHG emissions and removals arising from direct land use change over the period shall be included in the quantification of GHG emissions of products arising from this land on the basis of equal allocation to each year of the period (45).

1.

Where it can be demonstrated that the land use change occurred more than 20 years prior to the assessment being carried out, no emissions from land use change should be included in the assessment.

2.

Where the timing of land use change cannot be demonstrated to be more than 20 years, or a single harvest period, prior to making the assessment (whichever is the longer), it shall be assumed that the land use change occurred on 1 January of either:

a)

the earliest year in which it can be demonstrated that the land use change had occurred; or

b)

on 1 January of the year in which the assessment of GHG emissions and removals is being carried out.

The following hierarchy shall apply when determining the GHG emissions and removals arising from land use change occurring not more than 20 years or a single harvest period, before performing the assessment (whichever is the longer):

1.

where the country of production is known and the previous land use is known, the GHG emissions and removals arising from land use change shall be those resulting from the change in land use from the previous land use to the current land use in that country (additional guidelines on the calculations can be found in PAS 2050-1:2012);

2.

where the country of production is known, but the former land use is not known, the GHG emissions arising from land use change shall be the estimate of average emissions from the land use change for that crop in that country (additional guidelines on the calculations can be found in PAS 2050-1:2012);

3.

where neither the country of production nor the former land use is known, the GHG emissions arising from land use change shall be the weighted average of the average land use change emissions of that commodity in the countries in which it is grown.

Knowledge of the prior land use can be demonstrated using a number of sources of information, such as satellite imagery and land survey data. Where records are not available, local knowledge of prior land use can be used. Countries in which a crop is grown can be determined from import statistics, and a cut-off threshold of not less than 90% of the weight of imports may be applied. Data sources, location and timing of land use change associated with inputs to products shall be reported.’

Intermediate products (cradle-to-gate) derived from native forests shall always report as meta-data (in the ‘additional technical information’ section of the PEF report): (i) their carbon content (physical content and allocated content) and (ii) that corresponding carbon emissions shall be modelled with ‘(land use change)’ elementary flows.

For soil carbon stock: soil carbon emissions shall be included and modelled under this sub-category (e.g. from rice fields). Soil carbon emissions derived from aboveground residues (except from native forests) shall be modelled under sub-category 2, such as the application of non-native forest residues or straw. Soil carbon uptake (accumulation) shall be excluded from the results, e.g. from grasslands or improved land management through tilling techniques or other management measures taken related to agricultural land. Soil carbon storage may only be included in the PEF study as additional environmental information and if a proof is provided. If legislation has different modelling requirements for the sector, such as the EU Decision on greenhouse gas accounting from 2013 (46), which indicates carbon stock accounting, it shall be modelled according to the relevant legislation and provided under additional environmental information.

4.4.11   Offsets

The term ‘offset’ is frequently used to refer to third-party GHG mitigation activities, e.g. regulated schemes that are part of the Kyoto Protocol (the former clean-development mechanism; joint implementation), new mechanisms discussed in the context of negotiations article 6 of the Paris agreement emissions trading schemes, or voluntary schemes. Offsets are GHG reductions used to compensate for (i.e. offset) GHG emissions elsewhere, for example to meet a voluntary or mandatory GHG target or cap. Offsets are calculated relative to a baseline that represents a hypothetical scenario for what emissions would have been in the absence of the mitigation project that generates the offsets. Examples are carbon offsetting by the clean development mechanism, carbon credits, and other system-external offsets.

Offsets shall not be included in the impact assessment of a PEF study, but shall be reported separately as additional environmental information.

4.5   Handling multi-functional processes

If a process or facility provides more than one function, i.e. it delivers several goods and/or services (‘co-products‘), it is ‘multifunctional’. In these situations, all inputs and emissions linked to the process shall be partitioned between the product of interest and the other co-products in a principled manner. Systems involving multi-functionality of processes shall be modelled in line with the following decision hierarchy.

Specific allocation requirements in other sections of this method always prevail over the ones available in this section (e.g. Sections 4.4.2 on electricity, 4.4.3 on transport, 4.4.10 on GHG emissions, or 4.5.1 on slaughterhouse activities).

Decision hierarchy

1)   Subdivision or system expansion

As per EN ISO 14044:2006, wherever possible, subdivision or system expansion should be used to avoid allocation. Subdivision refers to disaggregating multifunctional processes or facilities to isolate the input flows directly associated with each process or facility output. System expansion refers to expanding the system by including additional functions related to the co-products. It shall be investigated first whether it is possible to subdivide or expand the analysed process. Where subdivision is possible, inventory data shall be collected only for those unit processes directly attributable (47) to the goods/services of concern. Or, if the system may be expanded, the additional functions shall be included in the analysis, with results communicated for the expanded system as a whole rather than on an individual co-product level.

2)   Allocation based on a relevant underlying physical relationship

Where it is not possible to apply subdivision or system expansion, allocation should be applied: the inputs and outputs of the system should be partitioned between its different products or functions in a way that reflects relevant underlying physical relationships between them (EN ISO 14044:2006).

Allocation based on a relevant underlying physical relationship refers to partitioning the input and output flows of a multi-functional process or facility in line with a relevant, quantifiable physical relationship between the process inputs and co-product outputs (for example, a physical property of the inputs and outputs that is relevant to the function provided by the co-product of interest). Allocation based on a physical relationship may be modelled using direct substitution, if it is possible to identify a product that is directly substituted.

To demonstrate that the direct substitution effect is robust, the user of the PEF method shall prove that:

(1)

there is a direct, empirically demonstrable substitution effect, AND

(2)

it is possible to model the substituted product and to subtract the LCI in a directly representative manner: if both conditions are fulfilled, model the substitution effect.

Or to allocate input/output based on some other relevant underlying physical relationship that relates the inputs and outputs to the function provided by the system, the user of the PEF method shall demonstrate that it is possible to define a relevant physical relationship by which to allocate the flows attributable to the provision of the defined function of the product system: if this condition is fulfilled, the user of the PEF method may allocate based on this physical relationship.

3)   Allocation based on some other relationship

Allocation based on some other relationship may be possible. For example, economic allocation refers to allocating inputs and outputs associated with multi-functional processes to the co-product outputs in proportion to their relative market values. The market price of the co-functions should refer to the specific conditions and stage of the process in which the co-products are produced. In any case, to ensure the physical representativeness of the PEF results as far as possible a clear justification for having discarded 1) and 2) and for having selected a certain allocation rule in step 3) shall be provided.

Allocation based on some other relationship may be approached in one of the following alternative ways.

(i)

Is it possible to identify an indirect substitution (48) effect and can the substituted product be modelled and the inventory subtracted in a reasonably representative manner? If yes (i.e. both conditions are verified), model the indirect substitution effect.

(ii)

Is it possible to allocate the input/output flows between the products and functions on the basis of some other relationship (e.g. the relative economic value of the co-products)? If yes, allocate products and functions based on the relationship identified.

The circular footprint formula (see Section 4.4.8.1) provides the approach that shall be used to estimate the overall emissions that result from a certain process involving recycling and/or energy recovery. These moreover also relate to waste flows generated within the system boundary.

4.5.1   Allocation in animal husbandry

This section provides instructions on how to address specific issues related to the modelling of farm, slaughterhouse and rendering for cattle, pigs, sheep and goats. In particular, instructions are provided on:

1.

allocation of upstream burdens at farm level among outputs leaving the farm

2.

allocation of upstream burdens (linked to live animals) at slaughterhouse level among outputs leaving the slaughterhouse.

4.5.1.1    Allocation within the farm module

At farm module, subdivision shall be used for processes that are directly allocated to certain outputs (e.g. energy use and emissions related to milking processes). If the processes cannot be subdivided due to the lack of separate data or because it is technically impossible, the upstream burden, e.g. feed production, shall be allocated to farm outputs using a biophysical allocation method. Default values used for allocation are provided in the following sections for each type of animal. These default values shall be used in PEF studies unless company-specific data are collected. Changing allocation factors is only allowed if company-specific data are collected and used for the farm module. In case secondary data are used for the farm module, no change of allocation factors is allowed.

4.5.1.2    Allocation within the farm module for cattle

The International Dairy Federation (IDF) (2015) allocation method between milk, cull cows and surplus calves shall be used. Dead animals and all products from dead animals shall be regarded as waste and the circular footprint formula shall be applied. In this case, however, the traceability of the products from dead animals shall be guaranteed to enable PEF studies to take this aspect into consideration.

Manure exported to another farm shall be considered as one of the following.

(a)

Residual (default option): if manure does not have an economic value at the farm gate, it is regarded as residual without allocation of an upstream burden. The emissions related to manure management up to the farm gate are allocated to the other farm outputs where manure is produced.

(b)

Co-product: when exported manure has an economic value at the farm gate, an economic allocation of the upstream burden shall be used for manure by using the relative economic value of manure compared to milk and live animals at the farm gate. However, biophysical allocation based on IDF rules shall be applied to allocate the remaining emissions between milk and live animals.

(c)

Manure as waste: when manure is treated as waste (e.g. landfilled), the circular footprint formula shall be applied.

The allocation factor (AF) for milk shall be calculated using the following equation:

Image 15L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to measure the life cycle environmental performance of their product or of their organisation, and/or communicate or intend to communicate life cycle environmental performance information to any private, public and civil society stakeholder in the EU.1.3.This Recommendation does not apply to the implementation of EU mandatory legislation that foresees a specific methodology for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations. This Recommendation may however be referred to by EU legislation or policy as a method for the calculation of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.2.DEFINITIONSFor the purposes of this Recommendation, the following definitions apply:(a)Product Environmental Footprint (hereinafter PEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of a product as laid down in Annex I.(b)Organisation Environmental Footprint (hereinafter OEF) method: general method to measure and communicate the potential life cycle environmental impact of an organisation as laid down in Annex III.(c)Product Environmental Footprint: result of a Product Environmental Footprint study based on the Product Environmental Footprint method.(d)Organisation Environmental Footprint: result of an Organisation Environmental Footprint study based on the Organisation Environmental Footprint method.(e)Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (hereinafter PEFCRs): Product category specific, life cycle based rules that complement general methodological guidance for PEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific product category. If a PEFCR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of a product belonging to that product category.(f)Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules (hereinafter OEFSRs): Sector-specific, life-cycle-based rules that complement general methodological guidance for OEF studies by providing further specification at the level of a specific sector. If an OEFSR exists, this should be used for calculating the environmental footprint of an organisation belonging to the sector.(g)Life cycle environmental performance: quantified measurement of the potential environmental impacts taking all relevant life cycle stages of a product or organisation into account, from a supply chain perspective.(h)Communication of life cycle environmental performance: any disclosure of life cycle environmental performance information, including to business partners, investors, public bodies or consumers.(i)Organisation: a company, corporation, firm, enterprise, authority or institution, or part or combination thereof, whether incorporated or not, public or private, that has its own functions and administrations.(j)Scheme: for-profit or not-for-profit initiative taken by private companies or an association thereof, by a public-private partnership, by governmental or by non-governmental organisations that requires the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.(k)Industrial association: organisation representing private companies that are members of the organisation or private companies belonging to a sector at local, regional national or international level.(l)Financial community: all actors providing financial services (including financial advice), including banks, investors and insurance companies.3.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS IN MEMBER STATES’ POLICIESMember States should:3.1.Use the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in voluntary policies involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations, as appropriate while ensuring that such policies do not create obstacles to the free movement of goods in the EU.3.2.Consider life cycle environmental performance information or claims based on the use of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs as valid in relevant national schemes involving the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products or organisations.3.3.Make efforts to increase the availability of high quality life cycle data by setting up actions to develop, review and make available national databases and contributing to populating existing public databases, based on requirements for Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Coherence between the different databases should be ensured between themselves..3.4.Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.3.5.Provide assistance and tools for SMEs to help them measure, improve and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF or the OEF method, on PEFCRs and OEFSRs. In doing so, authorities should avoid to duplicate existing tools, where these are fit for purpose.3.6.Encourage the use of the OEF method and related OEFSRs, where applicable, for measuring or communicating the life cycle environmental performance of public organisations.3.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance. In doing so, authorities should consider providing assistance and tools to SMEs in EU partner countries for the measurement and improvement of the life-cycle environmental performance of any intermediate goods or semi-finished products they produce.4.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS BY COMPANIES AND OTHER PRIVATE ORGANISATIONSCompanies and other private organisations deciding to measure or communicate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation should:4.1.Use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation.4.2.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.3.Consider providing support to companies in their supply chains, especially SME, to provide information based on PEF and OEF or PEFCRs and OEFSRs and to improve their organisations’ and their products’ life cycle environmental performance.Industrial associations should:4.4.Promote the use of the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs among their membership.4.5.Contribute to the review of public databases and populate these with high quality life cycle data in line with the requirements on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets. Contribute to Commission efforts in the area of availability of high quality of EF compliant datasets.4.6.Provide simplified calculation tools and expertise to help SME members calculate the life cycle environmental performance of their products or organisation based on the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs.4.7.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.5.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS AND OEFSRS IN SCHEMES RELATED TO THE MEASUREMENT OR COMMUNICATION OF LIFE CYCLE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE5.1Schemes related to the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance should use the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs as a reference method for the measurement or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations.6.USE OF THE PEF AND OEF METHODS AND RELATED PEFCRS/OEFSRS BY THE FINANCIAL COMMUNITYMembers of the financial community should, if appropriate:6.1.Promote the use of life cycle environmental performance information calculated on the basis of the PEF method or the OEF method and related PEFCRs and OEFSRs in the assessment of financial risk related to life cycle environmental performance.6.2.Promote the use of information based on OEF studies in their assessment of performance levels for the environmental component of sustainability indices.6.3.Promote and support the use of PEF and OEF methods at international level, including in multilateral forums or in relation to schemes on the measurement or communication of life cycle environmental performance.7.VERIFICATION7.1.If PEF and OEF studies are disclosed to third parties, the studies should be verified according to the requirements of the PEF and OEF methods and any specific indications in PEFCRs and OEFSRs.8.REPORTING ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE RECOMMENDATION8.1.Member States are invited to inform the Commission of actions taken in light of this Recommendation on a yearly basis. The first provision of information should be transmitted one year after the adoption of this Recommendation. Information transmitted should include:(a)how the PEF method and the OEF method and related PEFCRs/OEFSRs are used in policy initiative(s);(b)number of products and organisations covered by the initiative;(c)incentives related to life cycle environmental performance;(d)initiatives related to the development of high quality life cycle data;(e)assistance provided to SMEs in the provision of life cycle environmental information and in improving their life cycle environmental performance;(f)eventual problems or bottlenecks identified with the use of the methods.9.REPEALING OF PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU is hereby repealed. References to the repealed Recommendation shall be construed as references to the present Recommendation.Done at Brussels, 15 December 2021.For the CommissionVirginijus SinkevičiusMember of the Commission

Mmeat is the mass of live weight of all animals sold including bull calves and culled mature animals per year and Mmilk is the mass of fat and protein corrected milk (FPCM) sold per year (corrected to 4% fat and 3.3% protein). The constant 6.04 describes the causal relationship between the energy content in feed in relation to the milk and live weight of animals produced. The constant is determined based on a study that collected data from 536 US dairy farms (49) (Thoma et al., 2013). Although based on US farms, the IDF considers that the approach is applicable to European farming systems.

The FPCM (corrected to 4% fat and 3.3% protein) shall be calculated by using the following formula:

Image 16L1442022EN110120211215EN0001.00012176Commission Recommendation (EU) 2021/2279of 15 December 2021on the use of the Environmental Footprint methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisationsTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION,Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Articles 191 and 292 thereof,Whereas:(1)Reliable and correct measurement and information on the environmental performance of products and organisations is an essential element in the environmental decision-making of a wide range of actors.(2)The Product Environmental Footprint and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods (hereafter Environmental Footprint methods) enable companies to measure and communicate their environmental performance and thereby compete on the market based on reliable environmental information. They contain detailed instructions on how to model and calculate the environmental impacts of products and organisations. The Environmental Footprint methods build on existing, internationally accepted practices, indicators and rules.(3)In 2013, the Commission adopted Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EUCommission Recommendation 2013/179/EU of 9 April 2013 on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations (OJ L 124, 4.5.2013, p. 1). to promote the use of common methods to measure and communicate the life cycle environmental performance of products and organisations. It recommends their use to Member States, companies, private organisations and the financial community, and contains two annexes establishing the proposed methods.(4)The Commission established a framework for developing further the Environmental Footprint methods with the participation of a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, and particularly SMEs, through a pilot phase.(5)In the pilot phase running from 2013 to 2018, the development of product-specific rules (Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules, PEFCRs) and sector-specific rules (Organisation Environmental Footprint Sector Rules, OEFSRs) was tested with the active participation of stakeholders, resulting in the finalisation of 19 PEFCRs and 2 OEFSRs.(6)The Environmental Footprint methods were also updated on several technical aspects, such as: (1) application of the materiality principle (act where it matters); (2) the definition of a benchmark corresponding to the Environmental Footprint profile of the average production the market, also called representative product / organisation; (3) agreements on the modelling of key aspects concerning climate change, electricity, transport, infrastructure & equipment, packaging, end-of-life and agriculture; (4) inclusion of normalisation and weighting; (5) guidelines on how to include biodiversity as additional environmental information; (6) improvement of some impact assessment methods, with particular attention to the toxicity-related methods (human toxicity – cancer effects; human toxicity – non-cancer effects; eco-toxicity freshwater, water use, land use, resources and particulate matter); (7) defining characterisation factors based on REACH data; (8) and a guide on Environmental Footprint compliant datasets.(7)The results of the pilot phase were presented in the 2019 Commission Staff Working Document on Sustainable Products in a Circular Economy – Towards an EU Product Policy Framework contribution to the Circular EconomySWD(2019) 91final.. The same staff working document also indicated possible uses of the Environmental Footprint methods in policy development at EU level. Since 2019, and following a call of interest addressed to industry, the Commission continued the development of new Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules.(8)The Council Conclusions of October 2019https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/40928/st12791-en19.pdf welcomed the piloting of the EU Environmental Footprint methodology and all initiatives to support the communication of environmental impacts based on the Environmental Footprint pilot.(9)The European Green DealCOM(2019) 640 final. aims to mobilise industries for a clean and circular economy and underlines that to enable buyers to make more sustainable decisions and reduce the risk of green washing, reliable, comparable and verifiable information is needed.(10)In its Communication A new Circular Economy Action Plan – For a cleaner and more competitive EuropeCOM(2020) 98 final., the Commission highlighted that companies should substantiate their environmental claims using Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint methods and committed to test the integration of these methods in the EU Ecolabel.(11)The Communication on a New Consumer Agenda – Strengthening consumer resilience for sustainable recoveryCOM(2020) 696 final. indicates that to stimulate more voluntary corporate action, the Commission plans to work with economic operators to encourage their voluntary pledges to disclose to consumers the company’s environmental footprint, improve their sustainability and reduce the impact on the environment.(12)The Council Conclusions of December 2020 noted that the Product Environmental Footprint method has the potential of being one underlying methodology for various product policy tools in the EU and the framework for sustainable products, taking also other suitable methodologies into account.(13)The use of the Environmental Footprint methods is already foreseen in the context of EU policies and legislation such as the Taxonomy RegulationRegulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020 on the establishment of a framework to facilitate sustainable investment, and amending Regulation (EU) 2019/2088 (OJ L 198, 22.6.2020, p. 13)., the Sustainable Batteries InitiativeCOM(2020) 798 final. and the Green Consumption Pledgehttps://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/working_document_for_the_green_consumption_pledges_0.pdf.(14)In the light of these developments, Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU should be updated to integrate the technical developments of the pilot phase, in particular the development of category and sector rules, and therefore provide a sound basis for further policy development and implementation. It should facilitate companies to calculate their environmental performance based on reliable, verifiable and comparable information, and for other actors (public administrations, NGOs, business partners, for example) to have access to such information. It should also enhance the development of an EU Environmental Footprint database.(15)SMEs might lack the expertise and resources to address the requests for life cycle environmental performance information. Therefore, support to SMEs should be provided not only by the Commission, but also by Member States and industrial associations.(16)As new, internationally agreed approaches emerge, the Environmental Footprint methods are expected to be updated to integrate new indicators or modelling rules. These aspects are discussed in the Commission expert group on the Environmental Footprint Technical Advisory Board. Impacts related to biodiversity are for instance currently being considered.(17)As announced in the new Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission will explore the development of a regulatory framework for certification of carbon removals based on robust and transparent carbon accounting to monitor and verify the authenticity of carbon removals. This framework will be developed in mutual synergy and consistency with the environmental footprint method and when necessary be reflected in future updates of this Recommendation.(18)While this recommendation focuses on environmental impacts, in the global context concerns related to economic and social impacts, including of labour practices, play an increasingly important role. The Commission will continue to closely follow these developments as well as methods of analysing environmental, social and economic supply chain impacts of products consumed in the EU that have effects along the supply chain in third countries.(19)This Recommendation should replace the Commission Recommendation 2013/179/EU,HAS ADOPTED THIS RECOMMENDATION:1.PURPOSE AND SCOPE1.1.This Recommendation promotes the use of the Environmental Footprint methods in relevant policies and schemes related to the measurement and/or communication of the life cycle environmental performance of all kinds of products, including both goods and services, and of organisations.1.2.This Recommendation is addressed to Member States and to private and public organisations that measure or intend to