GEN: it's in our jeans AGM 2017 World Ecolabel Day
GREETINGS FROM THE CHAIR
Outlook for growth in ecolabelling globally In October 2016 the annual general meeting of GEN chose three words to encapsulate our goals for strategic development up to 2021; GEN shall be leading, serving and growing. Every member supports these goals in their own home market by showing that we are ecolabelling, with a unique strength gained from our cooperation through bilateral or multilateral recognition, based on our GENICES internal peer review system. We in GEN are expanding globally by attracting new members to join our network. It is all about choosing the environmentally best-performing products, which are the ecolabelled ones.
We are now about to begin participation in a working group under the umbrella of UN Environment's 10 YFP programme on consumer information, reaching out to potential new ecolabelling schemes and initiatives all over the world.
The basis for ecolabelling is good environmental information, however the information itself does not make a product environmentally preferable. Claims and declarations, even when they are true and third-party certified, do not on their own provide the information you need for comparison with other products. The Type 1 ecolabels of GEN members are a unique guide to environmentally sound consumption and production.
In October 2018 we will all come together to show that ecolabelling is a global movement with an array of activities to drive consumption and production in a more sustainable direction. World Ecolabel Day will show how we are all empowered to contribute to global sustainable development through the small, everyday decisions we make as consumers and buyers. Little changes everyday, when made by everyone, create a huge effect, making the much-needed bigger changes possible.
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Bjorn-Erik Lonn Chair
What goes around... This is an exciting time for GEN as its composition tips over a fulcrum, weighing more deeply into non-English and non “western” cultures, requiring more than ever a respect for, and working knowledge of, Asian, Eastern European and Oriental societies. Indeed, a global ethos. The new GEN Board reflects this relevance and reality. This is not the only change in the GEN world. Fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) are an insignia of our time, defining “the consumer society” which GEN seeks to address through a positive environmental influence on both supply and demand. The UN has highlighted food wastage, while the refuse mountain from the plastics industry and packaging has been highly visible. Electronics and fashion have also become high-profile, especially in terms of working conditions and short product lifecycle.
Outgoing team: editor Michael Hooper and secretariat manager Catherine Sheehy
Circular fashion is hardly new – the secondhand clothing stores worldwide (and maybe some of our wardrobes!) are testimony to that. Our cover story shows how some GEN members are formalising that at the point of clothing manufacture. I invite you to slip into something sustainable and enjoy reading in this issue about the Swedes in our jeans.
GEN member TCO Development has been a world leader in drawing attention to human rights abuses in the technology sector and has been able to show that many manufacturers are taking notice of their reports. In this issue we also draw attention to the good work of ecolabelling in the clothing industry.
Fourteen GEN members are listed on our website as having standards for clothing and textiles, and I hope many more sector leaders will be considering the benefits that come from using members' ecolabel standards as a sustainable production guide and as a point of difference in the marketplace.
As GEN launches events around its inaugural World Ecolabel Day on October 25, 2018, clothing is one area where a label is, quite literally, a label. However the sector lags behind in sustainability. “Fashion is one of the most far-behind industries of a mass-scale that is responsible for a negative footprint,” says fashion designer Stella McCartney. “The minute you make something, you leave a footprint.”
For Lifecycle Assessment (LCA) in the clothing and textile manufacture, the time has certainly come around, as fashion always does.
According to a new report launched by McCartney and Dame Ellen McArthur, the equivalent of one rubbish truck of textiles is wasted every second. In the US, for instance, it is estimated that clothes are only worn for around a quarter of the global average. It is also thought clothing items totalling £4.6bn across Britain remain unworn.
Michael Hooper Editor
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GEN – it's in our JEANS – fashion embraces eco-ethics “Brands have a lot of power in the supply chain and can make a difference in changing the operational behaviours of their own suppliers. They are very effective in demanding their own value chain to be more sustainable”.
Velour brand jeans by Nostalgi went on the shelves in Sweden with tags sporting the Nordic Swan ecolabel early in 2017. “The world's first Svanen Jeans” reads the label, with a consumer presence of which many other countries' ecolabels would be envious. The fabrics are made in Turkey with postindustrial recycled cotton and recycled polyester from PET bottles. The fabric was developed in cooperation with the Swan (Svanen) which, says the manufacturer, concentrated on sustainable materials and the health of workers and consumers. Turkish company, ISKO, is the only mill in the world to also have the EU Ecolabel, stating “rather than seeing this as a competitive edge over other denim mills, we see this as setting an example to the others in the denim industry to follow the same path to sustainability. ISKO has always been a global trailblazer in denim innovation, but we also like to be the trailblazer to make the denim industry more sustainable, showing other companies that it can be done”. Demand for sustainable products varies from country to country, says the company. “In Europe, especially in Nordic countries, there is a high awareness for sustainability which brings demand for sustainable products. In most cases, the big retailers are embarking on the sustainability journey to use more sustainable raw materials and focus on ethical trade because they feel that this is the right thing to do for the environment and society as a whole.
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ISKO uses pre-consumer recycled cotton in several of its fabrics. The recycled cotton is the reclaimed cotton fibres that are discarded as part of the weaving process. These fibres are collected and sent to ISKO's spinning facility, spun into yarns, then shipped to the weaving facility to be woven into recycled fabrics, “closing the loop”.
Benefits of the denim include no dangerous chemicals, toxins, endocrine disruptors, or heavy metals, better working environments for factory workers, less production pollution, and better fabric. “We want to offer and encourage and help the end consumer to make better and more sustainable choices,” said Per Andersson, Velour by Nostalgi founder. Cubus in Norway is also proudly selling Swancertified “Hannah” jeans.
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Sud off Soap gets in your eyes Companies and schools have also been targeted. Those who have ecolabelled soap, or will start purchasing it, receive a sign that shows they have made a responsible choice, caring for those who wash their hands in their restrooms.
Every year the average Swede uses about 9 litres of liquid soap and shower cream. Only 7 percent of the soap sold in pharmacies and grocery stores has an ecolabel, the rest contains chemicals that are toxic to aquatic life or can cause contact allergies. For two years, the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (SSNC) has encouraged consumers to look for an ecolabel on soap when shopping. Motivated members, sometimes wearing bathrobes, have informed people in communities and stores. Some have arranged workshops for making cosmetic products, while others have held lectures.
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Pictured are three of Karlstad's SSNC members and two ambassadors from Stockholm from the project “surfejs” or “cranky face”.
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First class The first Nordic Swan ecolabelled school building opened in 2017 after a one-year build and at a cost of 6.5 million Euros. The pre-school accommodates 200 pupils.
Inkeri expects this certification to ease the way for further ecolabelled schools. “The actual procurement did cost a bit more. When you try something new it almost always costs a bit more. However we knew that the ecolabel criteria guarantees that the life cycle costs will be less than they would normally be. We were thinking about the future. After this tender we consider similar projects, of course. The process was time consuming but now that we have done it and have the experience, it will be much easier next time.”
Inkeri Kontiola, a procurement specialist for the city of Hyvinkää says the small size of the team in most cities makes it difficult to have time and motivation for green public procurement, however the arguments of health and energy costs helped sway the decision.
Based on the experience, Inkeri Kontiola recommends to professional procurers: ● Take advantage of launching a request for information to meet with potential tenderers ● Use standards (ISO/EU) or certificates ● Build your invitation to tender in a way that it can accommodate criteria such as EU green public procurement criteria or eco-labels ● Plan time for the procurement process ● Take into account that procurement costs might be slightly higher
The construction company that won the tender admitted to some difficulty understanding the ecolabel criteria and says that some suppliers were actually reluctant to share product information.
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programme Working on Innovation that was signed by Premier Li Keqiang and German chancellor Angela Merkel in 2014. Over the past decade, China and Germany have carried out many activities in the field of environmental labelling such as development of common core criteria, study of mutual recognition mechanisms, personnel training and technical exchanges. This has promoted sustainable consumption and the development of green trade.
With the support of the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection and German Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety, a new environmental paper was signed in Beijing this year. The Environmental Development Centre of the German Environmental Protection Agency, China Environmental United Certification Centre (CEC) and the German Institute for Quality Assurance and Certification jointly signed the Letter of Intent in Beijing. Based on ChinaGermany cooperation on environmental labelling, this cooperation will expand to green consumption including SPP and the green supply chain. It continues a four-year project under the Sino-German Environmental Partnership.
The signing will become a new milestone for cooperation on environmental labelling between China and Germany, says CEC, playing a positive role in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations and promoting green consumption.
China and Germany signed the first cooperation agreement on environmental labelling in 2006, with strong support from the two governments, including involvement in the China-Germany cooperation
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Overview This year the Ukrainian ecolabelling programme "Green Crane" focused on the development of its criteria base, passing the national accreditation, awareness-raising activities, countering greenwash, and active participation in the development of sustainable public procurement (SPP). 16 standards were revised, and a standard for green building is currently being developed, expected by March 2018.
As of early November 2017 the Ukrainian Ecolabelling Program "Green Crane" includes: 52 product environmental criteria (valid standards) 112 valid environmental certificates 934 ecolabelling goods and services Current product categories are: Food and beverages Textiles Mattresses and furniture Building materials and paints Detergents and cosmetics Fuel Paper and plastic goods Electrical equipment Fertilizers Services – including accommodation, green classroom, green office
“This year we began to practice the acceptance of the criteria of other programmes by the cover method,” says president Svetlana Berzina, “using the identical degree of conformity (IDT) of the content of the standard. Considering the growth of the export potential of Ukrainian products, this enables the Ukrainian producer to undergo environmental certification of products in the framework of other ecolabeling programmes under a simplified scheme, simplifying Ukrainian producers' entry into foreign markets.” An example was PJSC Slobozhansky Construction Ceramics (ceramic facing bricks). These products are environmentally certified in Ukraine and exported to Israel. This year, on the basis of mutual recognition of conformity assessment results in the framework of the GENICES programme, the manufacturer received a certificate and the right to use the Israeli Green Label.
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“Of particular importance for the Ukrainian Ecolabelling Body Living Planet has been the continuous improvement of the quality management system and business reputation. Successfully passing the audit by the National Accreditation Agency for compliance with the ISO / IEC 17065 is a confirmation of its perfect work, significantly increasing the credibility of ecolabels among consumers and producers in Ukraine.” With the growing demand of the Ukrainian consumer for eco-products, greenwashing is also developing, reports Svetlana, and a special expert commission has been established at the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade. It monitors the products in trade networks and in accessible sources of information (manufacturers' websites, and Internet shops). If questionable ecolabels or organic markings are found, the manufacturer is requested to confirm the legality of the documentation or they are sent to the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine for investigation. Violators can be fined up to 5% of gross annual income. At the moment about 200 cases are being investigated. Producer information is then placed on www.gpp.in.ua on a specially created page "Note! Possible deceptive statements."
PJSC "Slobozhanska Building Ceramics", www.sbk.com.ua Standards were also adopted by the "cover method" for Textile products (EU Ecolabel), Electrical equipment and household appliances (Nordic Ecolabelling), Rolled steel products (Brazilian Association for Technical Standards) and Alternative solid fuel and firelighting products (Nordic Ecolabelling). This year, the greatest interest in certification was shown by the manufacturers of household chemicals, food products and building materials. In total, in 2017, 26 certificates were issued for 275 products. New products have appeared, such as metal-plastic windows and doors; polyethylene pipes for cold water supply, technical purposes and sewerage; juices and food products; and refrigeration units for food products. The year 2017 has also been successful for the practical application of the Green Office Standard, says Svetlana Berzina, with certification of the office premises of leading construction company Pivnichno-Ukrayins'kiy Budivel'niy Al'yans, Tov.
North-Ukrainian Construction Alliance also received the Green Office certification
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Events Taking place November 21-24, it was a meeting point for inventors, producers and developers of advanced technologies; a meeting place of startups with potential consumers, manufacturers, investors, experts from Ukraine and China, as well as Ukraine political leaders.
A tradition for the Living Planet has been the annual International Forum for Sustainable Business Development GREEN MIND (www.greenmind.com.ua). A feature this year was the simultaneous work of the forum with another large-scale event â€“ the International Forum INNOVATION MARKET (www.innovationmarket.com.ua) held under the auspices of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.
At the opening, Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine - Stepan Kubiv. Svetlana Berzina, president of Living Planet demonstrates an exhibition on sustainable consumption and ecolabelling
27 activities and more than 5000 participants at Innovation Market
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This year saw an innovative competition between Ukrainian universities (Higher School Battle) in promotion of eco-products. In this framework, the Living Planet conducted a number of workshops on environmental certification, the requirements of the Green Office and the implementation of SPP (with the support and participation of UNEP). October 24 was a family social day for those who wanted to know more about sustainable consumption with an exhibition, lectures, and games for children, contests and prizes of eco products. It was part of a major and ongoing campaign of education and outreach by the programme.
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Sustainable public procurement (SPP) leaps ahead Priority industries were identified as construction (including the production of building materials) and the chemical industry. Criteria were developed, with 19 training sessions and presentations at conferences and forums. Amendments were made to legislation, and competitive tender documentation was developed and piloted using the Kyiv Palace of Children and Youth (procurement of paints) and the State Environmental Academy for Postgraduate Education and Management (procurement of detergents and cleaning agents). A communication strategy was developed with more than 30 publications made, and a final conference held in Kyiv on November 23rd.
Since 2014 Ukraine has implemented the Regional Partnership for Ecologisation of the Economies of the EU Eastern Partnership States (EaP GREEN) in partnership with UNEP: "Encouraging the change in public consumption through the introduction of sustainable public procurement practices." Full implementation of SPP is planned to be introduced in Ukraine before 2019. During the project implementation period, significant work was done including analysis of the awareness and readiness of buyers; defining of SPP priority sectors and products, analysis of the regulatory framework and a monitoring system implementation.
Barriers that need to be overcome: Limited evaluation criteria Low level of awareness of buyers about the advantages, principles and methods of SPP A small share of the market for goods and services having confirmed compliance with the criteria What is to be worked on: Amendments to the law and the creation of by-laws Capacity building activities Approval of a list of criteria that can be applied by the buyer as sustainability criteria System training and information for buyers Development of an ecolabeling programme “Type 1” in accordance with ISO 14024 Popularisation of sustainable consumption principles The SPP manual is available here in Ukrainian and English. http://www.zhivaplaneta.org.ua/images/2017/Handbook_SPP_17Nov17.pdf
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environmental labelling products reached 715.45 billion Yuan (approx. USD 105 billion) during 2008 - 2016 with a continuous rise of environmental labelling products in similar products of government procurement.
Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Awards GEN congratulates two members whose case studies in ecolabelling have been recognised by the Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council. Founded in 2013, the council aims to simplify and standardise sustainable purchasing by large organisations. China Environmental United Certification Centre and TCO Development were recognised.
TCO Certified is the most comprehensive sustainable certification for IT products, including computers, tablets and other devices. For 25 years, TCO Certified has offered purchasers an independently verified tool for reducing risk and meeting sustainability challenges connected to electronics. Since 2009 TCO Certified has included criteria for socially responsible manufacturing, and a 2016 impact study reveals major improvements in code of conduct compliance in factories manufacturing certified products. Results include a reduction to zero nonconformities in several key parameters.
According to the Council abstract, China's policy on government procurement of environmental labelling products has been improving over the past 10 years with a wider scope of products and a gradual improvement of the management mechanism. It plays a good guiding and demonstration role in facilitating comprehensive implementation of sustainable consumption. The policy on government procurement of environmental labelling products not only improves environmental performance of government agencies, but also reduces energy consumption and emissions of pollutants by forcing green upgrading of enterprises through consumption. Government procurement of
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Vitality Leaf expands its boundaries The Ecological Union believes that this will encourage “a burst of domestic market green innovative technologies”. The certification also attracted attention from the wider energy, green building and real estate sectors, says Yulia Gracheva, director of the Ecological Union.
Vitality Leaf, the Russian ecolabelling scheme operated by the Ecological Union, is expanding. Recently, the label was awarded to photovoltaic solar power modules manufactured by the Hevel Group, Russia's largest integrated solar energy company. This is the first Russian solar power ecolabel.
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Dr Gracheva says another positive trend is the growing interest in ecolabelling in countries which are economic partners of Russia. This summer, the Vitality Leaf was awarded to CSR Central Asia in Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan. The company provides services in corporate social responsibility and sustainability. â€œWe see that in neighbouring countries business is also willing to become greener with the help of internationally recognised tools, such as environmental certification according to ISO14024. Not every country of the Eurasian Economic Union has its own internationally recognised ecolabel yet, and therefore we have a chance to pass our successful experience to colleagues,â€? says Yulia.
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Spreading ecolabel knowledge among Russians This northern hemisphere summer, Vitality Leaf reached a wide audience with an educational campaign about ecolabels, sustainable consumption and the Global Ecolabelling Network. The campaign took place in Saint-Petersburg in the framework of a large open air festival, organised by popular Russian social network Vkontakte. “During the two days of the festival we saw a realistic portrait of the modern consumer, who is not just superficially interested in everything green, but is ready to change habits to reach sustainable goals. However, still many Russians are not familiar with ecolabels, and that makes a challenge for us to actively educate consumers,” says Ksenia Illarionova, head of the PR Department of the Vitality Leaf ecolabel.
Vitality Leaf worked for the two days of the festival and attracted more than 1000 visitors. Families, students and school children learned to pick sustainable products using ecolabels and to identify greenwashing through games and art installations. The campaign promoted the mobile application “Ecopolka” which was developed by the Ecological Union to help find true eco-products. Russian consumers learned about Type 1 ecolabels and that reliable ecolabels around the world are members of GEN. People discovered what ecolabels look like: Bra Miljöval, the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, the Blue Angel, Korea Eco-Label and other labels which Russian consumers can come across in stores. Participants took pictures in front of the installations and posted them to social networks. Visitors to the art space received not only new knowledge, but also useful prizes from Vitality Leaf and its sponsoring licensees, such as ecolabelled household cleaning products BioMio by SPLAT, power banks from TechnoNIKOL, plus eco-bags and other surprises from Vitality Leaf.
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A year of change proves “promising” actually came from caged-hen farms. A range of consumer, business and trade media embraced the story.
New Zealand's only Type 1 ecolabel, the Government-owned Environmental Choice New Zealand (ECNZ), enjoyed a busy year of developments and promotions, says general manager Francesca Lipscombe. “The year kicked off with the welcome news that the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had accepted ECNZ specifications for Paints and Synthetic Carpets as part of the US Federal Government's procurement recommendations, opening the door for New Zealand manufacturers to gain a foothold in those markets.”
Consumer perceptions of ecolabels were the subject of a market survey by ECNZ and the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) published in September. Key findings included Environmental Choice rating as the ecolabel providing the strongest environmental guarantee of the well-known ecolabels in NZ. The ecolabel also rated highly for trustworthiness and for having high standards. September also saw the New Zealand General Elections which brought a new left-of-centre government to power, incorporating the Labour and Greens and NZ First parties in the MMP electoral environment. Environmental Choice New Zealand had worked closely with the key political parties to understand their stances on a possible sustainable procurement policy and moves in that direction look promising under the new Government, says Francesca.
In May came the news that NZ Steel/Pacific Steel had been granted a licence for their COLORSTEEL™ range of powder-coated roofing steel products under the recently instituted ECNZ specification for resin- and powdercoated steel – the first NZ company to achieve the standard. Soon after, home-grown cleaning company, CrestClean was awarded a licence for its services and products.
“Another exciting new development for the ecolabel is a proposed new specification for Construction and Demolition (C&D) waste management. It was put out for consultation to the industry and feedback is being sought with a view to advancing its development in early 2018 if there is strong support for it.”
The middle of 2017 saw Environmental Choice New Zealand receive wide coverage for comments by the ecolabel's Francesca Lipscombe on the place and importance of ecolabels. Although ECNZ does not certify or license food products, the comments were in response to a continued prevalence of “greenwash” in New Zealand and a lack of verification in some areas for product claims – most notably involving “free-range” eggs that GEN MAG • 2017
ECNZ has also developed a Promotional Kit for licensees which includes materials they could use to market their ecolabel-supported environmental credentials, and the kit will be sent out in early 2018. GEN members are welcome to contact Francesca for a copy. email@example.com
Ecolabelled paints transform low income township
Services, and the Auckland factory PaintPlus. PaintPlus creates environmentally preferable paints that qualify for the ecolabel. The ECNZ licensee's co-owner, John Warman, was inspired to help after talking to a Presbyterian Support staffer. Mr Warman had noticed the changes in Moerewa's neighbouring town, Kawakawa, in recent years as he drove north for holidays. â€œI said 'wouldn't it be nice to see the houses in Moerewa getting painted, and I think I know a way to go about it because we get paint returns.'"
Long-standing ECNZ licensee Paint Plus made news recently with its initiatives to clean up an empoverished town's worst houses with ecolabelled paint. Some areas of New Zealand have many people living in poverty, and the Northland town of Moerewa is one of the most needy.
after That conversation led Mr Warman to donate about $40,000 worth of paint to the Moerewa makeover.
The town was once a thriving community where nearly everyone had a job at the freezing works or the dairy factory. However, since the 1980s it has gone downhill, with more than 80 percent of its people on a welfare benefit or retired.
His generosity was matched by tradespeople who gave their time to supervise building, plumbing and electrical work. Trade trainees provided the labour, and locals pitched in making curtains, carting rubbish and feeding the workers. Young unemployed people learned new skills like floor-sanding and painting, giving them a sense of self-worth and the chance of full-time work.
According to Radio New Zealand, the small, sturdy weatherboard houses had taken on a desolate quality, as homeowners struggled to feed themselves, let alone repair leaky roofs or pay for paint. One elderly couple had had no hot water for eight years and had been using their neighbours' bathroom as the toilet was basically falling through the floor. The roof was coming down in parts of the house and the electricals were dodgy. One hundred homes were identified as in dire need of repairs, about 20 percent of the town's housing stock. Fifteen were selected for major repairs in a project run by the town's indigenous people's trust, with help from the government, Presbyterian Support
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Take the Pledge Good Environmental Choice Australia has shown leadership by challenging business to “take the positive procurement pledge” and the ecolabel has set up a separate web presence to do so (www.gecapledge.eco). GECA asks all businesses to commit to developing, documenting and implementing a sustainable procurement policy to govern all purchasing decisions by December 31, 2020. The pledge is open to any organisation – regardless of its sector, size, and location – that is involved in procurement decisions and processes. “We understand that every organisation's pledge journey will be unique,” says CEO Kate Harris. “Some of our pledgers will have existing sustainable procurement policies, while others will be taking their first steps in this area. Our pledge has been designed to allow them to move to the next level at their own pace no matter where they're starting from.”
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In GECA Veritas
“We look forward to working with such a wellrespected conformity assessment body to certify products that drive sustainable consumption and production practices, both in Australia and internationally,” said Harris.
Good Environmental Choice Australia (GECA) is pleased to announce that Bureau Veritas has achieved JASANZ accreditation and has commenced auditing and certification for products and services seeking GECA certification.
Bureau Veritas is a Global leader in Testing, Inspection and Certification (TIC). Created in 1828, the Group has more than 73,000 employees in around 1,400 offices and laboratories in 140 countries and 400,000 clients across the world. Bureau Veritas helps organisations improve their performance by offering services and innovative solutions in order to ensure that their assets, products, infrastructure and processes meet Standards and Regulations in terms of Quality, Health and Safety, Environmental Protection and Social Responsibility.
GECA requires that all auditing companies, or Conformity Assessment Bodies (CABs), assessing products and services for GECA certification be accredited with JAS-ANZ. JAS-ANZ is the government-appointed accreditation body for Australia and New Zealand responsible for providing accreditation of CABs in the fields of certification and inspection.
“We are very excited to be associated with the GECA ecolabelling scheme, which helps stakeholders make good choices in their purchasing decisions in the interests of clients and the environment,” said Sam Guindi, Product Certification Manager at Bureau Veritas. “The JAS-ANZ accreditation is an endorsement of Bureau Veritas' competency, credibility and integrity in conducting GECA conformity assessment activities which provides confidence that we meet the highest standards in the industry.” “We are thrilled to have Bureau Veritas on board with us to conduct audits for GECA,” said GECA's CEO, Kate Harris. “Having a third JAZ-ANZ accredited auditing company available means more room for GECA to grow, more competitive options for auditing available to our wonderful licensees, and ultimately a greater range of trusted certified products and services available on the market.”
Bureau Veritas joins fellow CABs, DLCS International and BSI, in auditing products and services for GECA, expanding the opportunities available for existing and potential GECA licensees to achieve certification.
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New GEN Secretariat graphically green
energy efficient and work toward zero-waste. Linda helped develop and promote the first comprehensive environmental criteria for restaurants and hotels in the USA.
A familiar, friendly face will be attending to GEN administration from January, as Linda Chipperfield takes over as secretariat manager from Catherine Sheehy and the team at UL. In the newly expanded secretariat role, Linda and her team will manage GEN communications such as the website, annual report, and magazine. And, just as UL has done for many years, Linda will provide the day-to-day contact for GEN members and assistance with meetings, administration, and GENICES.
From a personal perspective, Linda says she has been an environmentalist for most of her life. “My father emigrated from the UK and instilled in his family the importance of a global viewpoint on conservation. He encouraged us to be engaged with the community and educate people on ecological issues. He inspired me to start a coalition to promote clean energy in Missouri, become an activist in the Sierra Club and to serve on the national board of the U.S. Green Building Council as a LEED Green Associate.” (The Sierra Club is an environmental organisation founded 125 years ago.)
Based in Florida, with her own graphic design company, Linda is a former member of GEN through Green Seal, one of the founding organisations of the Network. She served as a board member from 2008 until 2015, helping to develop and execute strategic plans and initiatives, and updating the by-laws. During her time on the board, Linda hosted the 2010 GEN AGM in Washington DC, participated in several GENICES audits, and represented GEN at international environmental conferences.
Linda says she looks forward to helping GEN protect the environment and create a more sustainable world. Welcome Linda!
As vice president of marketing and communications at Green Seal, Linda promoted GEN as a leader in developing, assisting and growing ecolabels. She viewed Green Seal's membership as a differentiator and an important credential among organisations whose responsibility it is to identify products and services that protect human health and the environment. At Green Seal, Linda helped over 600 companies develop and market greener products. She worked with the governments of Washington DC, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Austin (Texas), San Francisco and Los Angeles to make their cities more sustainable. She also helped Walmart make its fleet and properties more
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10YFP – SPP: GEN fully involved Compass, which lists genuine environmental labels for reference in tendering processes, including GEN members the Blue Angel, Nordic Swan and the EU Ecolabel. “Officers can view other municipalities' tenders and engage in mutual learning,” comments Dr Divakarla. “Ecolabels are given prominence as a tool for selecting products.”
“Sustainable public procurement has reached a turning point” concludes Ligia Noronha, Director of the Economy Division of UN Environment (UNEP) in the introduction to the 2017 Global Review of SPP. It is fair to say that GEN members were very visible during the review process. Board member Xiaodan Zhang was part of the team that provided feedback on the government questionnaire, the stakeholder survey pilot was reviewed by a team including GEN Chair Bjorn-Erik Lonn, and GEN Board treasurer associate Hiroyuki Kobayashi was one of the peer reviewers.
GECA's compulsory site audits, and particularly the additional random audits, were acknowledged as an example of leading practice in addressing the issue of label reliability. Bjorn-Erik Lonn praised the continuing discussion on expanding lifecycle considerations into the area of social impacts. “GEN member TCO Development has shone a spotlight on this in the I.T. area and can take some credit for its increased international prominence,” he says, adding that the challenges of maintaining high thresholds in developing countries such as India should be addressed by capacity building “rather than lowering the bar”. The GreenPro ecolabel from the Confederation of Indian Industry has recently become a full member of GEN.
The research investigated what 41 governments are doing to progress SPP. The report also looked at how procurers use ecolabels. The full report is available here: http://www.scpclearinghouse.org/sites/default/ files/globalreview_web.pdf The Chair of the Global Ecolabelling Network (GEN) Bjorn-Erik Lonn and the Standards & Technical Manager of Good Environmental Choice Australia (GECA) Dr Shaila Divakarla recently attended a Working Group (WG4b2) of the 10YFP SPP programme in Zurich, in connection with the ISEAL conference at which ICLEI also made a presentation. Among the highlights, GEN noted the Sustainability
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World Ecolabel Day 25 October, 2018 GEN member ecolabelled products and services meet the evident and growing demand for sustainable consumption and production and the world needs to know! There's no better way to bring awareness to the environmental integrity that defines Type 1 ecolabels and their positive effect on sustainable consumption and lifestyle than with a global day of celebration: World Ecolabel Day.
This initial launch of World Ecolabel Day, scheduled for 25 October, 2018, will include activities, promotions, and education aimed at consumers, customers and purchasing agents during the week leading up to and including World Ecolabel Day. Be on the lookout for more information about this exciting, engaging celebration on the GEN website.
USD 1.72 trillion – but not a lot of greenbacks According to the U.S. Census Bureau (2016), American local governments purchase USD 1.72 trillion of goods annually, but less than a third show a formal commitment to sustainable procurement. This delivers quite a challenge to ecolabelled vendors, but also offers massive opportunity to educate a huge market in the benefits of ecolabelled products.
sustainable public purchasing. Second on the list was greater use of ecolabels and certifications. The study analysed responses from over 600 directors of city departments or programmes and found that “local governments don't typically have a lot of information” when it comes to green products, so another recommendation was adoption and integration of flexible e-procurement systems.
Under the banner of the UN Environment 10 Year Framework of Programmes, Arizona State University has released a report into local government sustainable purchasing across the USA. It found only 28 percent of the respondent cities even have an SPP policy.
Participation in professional networks was another recommendation, specifically mentioning GEN affiliate member the International Green Purchasing Network (IGPN).
The study, under the university's School of Public Affairs, in partnership with the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) made eight specific recommendations to further advance GEN MAG • 2017
ISO sustainable procurement standard After four years of development, the first international standard for sustainable procurement was launched this year (2017) by the International Standards Organisation (ISO). The first standard of its kind in the world, ISO 20400 aims to help companies make better purchasing choices throughout their supply chains by establishing guidelines for companies to judge suppliers on ethical and sustainability issues. ISO 20400 aims to help companies make better purchasing choices throughout their supply chains by establishing guidelines for companies to judge suppliers on ethical and sustainability issues.
Jacques Schramm, chair of ISO/PC 277, the committee which developed the standard, said it would help organisations avoid the financial, environmental and reputational risks associated with poor supply chain management. "The risks of not understanding and managing practices throughout the whole supply chain are great," he said. "At best, poor quality products or ruptures of stock can result. At worst, disasters like the Rana Plaza in Bangladesh in 2013 can happen. Sustainable procurement helps to minimize risks such as these by encouraging buyers and suppliers to work closely together for a better result for all."
ISO 20400 boasts 38 participating countries and 14 observing nations, together representing 65 percent of the world's population, 85 percent of global GDP and 73 percent of carbon emissions. As well as environmental considerations, it also takes account of social and economic sustainability when judging what sustainable purchasing looks like. "It is no longer enough for businesses to rely on suppliers to provide them with what they want, no questions asked," Schramm said. "Organisations benefit greatly from getting to know their suppliers — understanding what their requirements are as well — to ensure their demands are not unrealistic and that the suppliers they work with have good, ethical practices."
The chair of the GEN, Bjorn-Erik Lonn, welcomes the further endorsement of “Type 1” ecolabels. “We see it as important that global guidance is given for what the true greening of purchase routines must be based upon. Type 1 ecolabels are the most reliable environmental information tools in the supply chain, and it is essential they are given the importance they deserve in this context.”
Unlike many other ISO standards, ISO 20400 is a guidance standard rather than a certification standard. As such, companies cannot become ISO 20400 certified, and instead the aim is to build a global consensus around the key terms and expectations for responsible procurement. ISO says it will complement the existing ISO 26000 standard on social responsibility.
Dr Shaila Divakarla from Good Environmental Choice Australia, and GEN liaison for the standard, played a key role in ensuring that the high visibility and importance of Type 1 Ecolabels established in the standard were maintained throughout the development/amendment process.
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25 years of innovation marks a global milestone for sustainable IT products In each generation of TCO Certified the criteria are enhanced and developed. Independent pre and post certification verification is also an important part of that process. In this way, TCO Certified helps ensure that more socially and environmentally sustainable IT products are available on the market. “Buyers hold the key to the development of more sustainable IT products. Without buyer demand, the criteria in TCO Certified will not have the same impact, which could slow progress in the drive to greater sustainability” continues Enholm.
For over 25 years, TCO Certified has developed solutions for driving social and environmental responsibility in IT products and their manufacture. In late 2018 they will launch a new generation of TCO Certified - the eighth generation to date. The certification continues to be a global tool for driving the IT industry in a more sustainable direction. “Together with buyers and other global stakeholders, with the next generation of TCO Certified we want to take the next steps in driving a sustainable life cycle for IT products,” comments Sören Enholm, CEO of TCO Development.
TCO’s Stephen Fuller addresses human rights issues GEN MAG • 2017
The global success story of TCO Certified began in 1992 as a tool for moving the IT industry to develop computer displays that were safer, and more energy- and cost efficient. “TCO Certified is today the global leader and has been a driver in pushing for progress in the sustainability of the IT product life cycle in a rapidly changing market” says Björn-Erik Lönn, Chair of Global Ecolabelling Network, GEN, the organization for independent lifecycle based environmental certifications. Since then, the certification has grown to meet new environmental and social challenges, such as working conditions in the supply chain. More than 10,600 product models from over 400 manufacturers have been certified. TCO Certified is now available in eight IT product categories, with notebooks being the second largest. TCO Certified is still today a tool for driving the IT industry in a more sustainable direction. “25 years is an important milestone. We are proud of the contributions that TCO Certified has made, from the early days of energy efficiency to our groundbreaking work in supply chain responsibility and reducing hazardous content in IT products,” concludes Enholm. The next generation TCO Certified will mark a new milestone toward a sustainable life cycle for IT products.
Sören Enholm – CEO
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AGM “What does true cooperation within a country look like? Shelves full of ecolabelled products in an ecolabelled supermarket. Staying in an ecolabelled hotel, drinks at the ecolabelled restaurant before attending the conference in the ecolabelled venue. Oh and at the end of it all, catching the carbon neutral ecolabelled train direct to the airport! Congratulations Nordic Swan.” Kate Harris GECA
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The world's strongest ecolabels combine their vision for a greener future Putting words into action was the theme of the annual conference and Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Stockholm, Sweden, in October this year, sponsored by Nordic Ecolabelling, TCO Development, and the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation. Representatives attended from Thailand, Malaysia, Australia, the United States, New Zealand, Israel, China, Chinese Taipei, Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Japan, Russia, and Ukraine, among others.
Keynote speaker, Mr. Dagfinn Høybråten, the Secretary-General of the Nordic Council of Ministers, opened the conference, explaining how independent ecolabels help the region meet its commitments to the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. He brought home the importance of our work with the personal comment: “I am a grandfather… on behalf of my granddaughter, I thank you.”
Mr. Per Bolund, Swedish Minister of Financial Markets and Consumer Affairs, Deputy Minister of Finance, closed the event with an announcement of Nordic Ecolabelling's award to seven financial management firms for meeting the requirements of newly launched criteria for ethical investment funds.
GEN announced plans for the first World Ecolabel Day, scheduled for October 2018. Its purpose is to engage consumers and raise awareness about Type 1 (the strongest) ecolabels around the world. Delegates also heard from distinguished speakers on topics ranging from GEN's engagement and support of capacity development activities around the world, through to new lifecycle assessment approaches that could inform the future development of standards.
Other speakers included academics, GEN members, and three GEN Board members – Mr. Björn-Erik Lönn, GEN Chair; Mr. Chin-Yuan Chen representing Environmental Development Foundation from Chinese Taipei; and Ms. Eva Eiderström, representing the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation. GEN MAG • 2017
A considerable number of Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRAs) were also signed.
GEN voted to add to its board of directors Ms Yulia Gracheva, PhD, the Director and head of the Russian ecolabelling programme Vitality Leaf. She joins Mr Guy Ladvocat, Systems and Certification Manager of ABNT Brazil; Dr HansHermann Eggers, head of Eco-design, Ecolabelling and Green Public Procurement at the German Federal Environment Agency which runs the Blue Angel ecolabel; Mr Björn-Erik Lönn, Senior Advisor of International Affairs for Nordic Ecolabelling, which runs the Nordic Swan ecolabel; Ms Xiaodan Zhang, General Manager of the China Environmental United Certification Centre (CEC), and Chief Expert of the Environmental Development Centre of MEP; Ms Linda Ho, CEO of Hong Kong Green Council; and Mr Chin-Yuan Chen, Project Manager of the Green Mark ecolabelling programme run by the Environmental Development Foundation from Chinese Taipei.
Eva Eiderström acknowledged for her service
Mr Osamu Uno from EcoMark, run by the Japan Environment Association (JEA), was confirmed as Treasurer again for 2018. Björn-Erik Lönn offered special thanks to retiring board member Eva Eiderström for her many years of service, UL Environment for its service as Secretariat, and Spotlight Creative Media for its communications support. Chipperfield Design was appointed to provide Secretariat Services in the 2018 – 2020 term.
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Introducing new board member Dr Yulia Gracheva Yulia represents the ecolabelling programme Vitality Leaf, being the Director of the certification body in the non-commercial Ecological Union of Russia. “Overall, I have 12 years' experience in ecolabelling, certification and criteria development,” she says. “Being responsible for establishing all the procedures in the growing Vitality Leaf programme from the very beginning, I have managed successful completion of the GENICES audit by the Vitality Leaf program. I hope to be useful as a Board member in guiding the new programme entering GEN, also I can be helpful in organising GENICES audits. As the Russianspeaking community grows in GEN, I can facilitate communication and understanding between parties.
“I believe that my experience in managing the programme in a small organisation on the undeveloped market, without governmental contribution, and dealing with the various challenges, will make an additional contribution to GEN, especially for members who work in similar market and financial conditions. Also I can contribute in the promotion of Type 1 ecolabels on a global level, by using creative activities and IT tools, as we put much effort into our PR activities with ecolabelling as a global issue, not only our particular programme.” Bjorn-Erik and the board of directors warmly welcome Yulia and look forward to her contribution.
New full GEN members
India and Kazakhstan ecolabelling programmes have joined the GEN family as full members.
The International Academy of Ecology is a nonprofit organisation in Kazakhstan, offering its partners the trademarks "ECO", "Bio" and "Non GMO". They produce an annual catalogue of producers of environmentally friendly products and services, to date including more than 125 domestic companies. Since 2016, the International Academy of Ecology has been engaged with membership of GEN and their neighbours, China, Ukraine and Russia. It also engages with ecobio.kz; ekokaz.kz and in social networks:
Prof Duambekov of Kazakhstan is welcomed to the family on-line by Chair Bjorn-Erik Lonn
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India The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) is a non-government, not-for-profit, industry-led and industry-managed organisation, playing a proactive role in India's development process. Founded in 1895, India's premier business association has over 8,500 members, from the private as well as public sectors, and an indirect membership of over 200,000 enterprises from around 250 national and regional sectoral industry bodies. CII works closely with Government on policy issues and provides a platform for consensusbuilding and networking on key issues. With 67 offices, including 9 Centres of Excellence in India, and 11 overseas offices in Australia, Bahrain, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Iran, Singapore, South Africa, UK, and USA, as well as institutional partnerships with 344 counterpart organisations in 129 countries, CII serves as a reference point for Indian industry and the international business community.
Sattanathan Karthikeyan receives India's GreenPro GENICES certificate
Welcome Colombia The newest Associate Member is the Colombian Environmental Seal programme, Sello Ambiental Colombiano. There are presently 24 product categories available, with the programme owned by the Ministry of Environment, Housing and Territorial Development. The ecolabel will be featured in our next issue.
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View from the floor Dmytro Kapoyia, Criteria Developer at TCO Development, reports his experience of the 2017 AGM and Conference especially from the Scandinavian perspective (edited).
GPP in Sweden is integrated into legislation. According to Anna Norberg, Project Manager at ModUpp2020 (the initiative that incentivises cooperation between the Nordic ecolabelling programmes to promote GPP), public procurement in Sweden is SEK 640 billion per year. It is planned that in 2020 at least half of it will consist of ecolabelled products. Existing barriers include the lack of knowledge amongst suppliers and customers as well as the necessity to clarify legislation.
Touching on 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Nordic countries have focused on sustainable cities, integrated energy markets and renewable energy. Green growth is of the highest importance and it incorporates the circular economy concept and Green Public Procurement (GPP). GPP often accepts independent ecolabels using them as a proof of a better environmental and social profile of purchased products.
Board member Chin-Yuan Chen from the Environmental Development Foundation (Chinese Taipei) described how in his country a public procurement applicant must possess an environmental certificate for a product or service, otherwise, it is not possible to register. Another positive example of SPP implementation is Copenhagen, Denmark. The City Council has adopted a new Green Procurement Policy that came into force on 1 November 2017, indicating a preference for Nordic Swan and EU Flower ecolabels in a broad selection of products. Mr Martin Fabiansen, Director of Nordic Ecolabelling (Denmark), says that 54% of Danes support such actions on the municipal level.
GEN members strive to enhance cooperation and create a harmonised database of criteria and standards. This results in the signing of Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRA) between the members: the objective is to simplify access to each other's markets for ecolabelled products. Currently, 40 MRAs are valid within the network. Dr Ari Nissinen, of the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), commented that ecolabelling criteria affect design and production phases, serving as a benchmark for designers, producers, purchasers and consumers, literally promoting the circular economy.
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Cecilia Soler, Associate Professor at Gothenburg School of Economics, discussed the main challenges of ecolabelling from a marketing perspective. One of the main problems is the inability of customers to distinguish ecolabels and their messages â€“ there are over 465 ecolabels of different kinds on the world market. 37
GEN members spent three days planning and arranging activities for the next year. The list of discussed questions included establishing World Ecolabel Day, how to use digital tools for sharing information, and development of a single approach for measuring the efficiency and impact of Type 1 ecolabelling. Mr Åke Thidell, Ms Charlotte Leire & Mr Thomas Lindhqvist suggested a set of indicators. Mr Siddarth Prakash from Öko-Institut e.V. (Germany) presented a three-year project that aims to answer the same question and GEN members were invited to join workgroups.
Stephen Fuller, Criteria Development & Compliance Manager of TCO Certified, presented the programme's experience with supply chains in the IT industry, and their social aspects (such as labour law, child labour, health and safety). To improve both environmental and social profiles of a product it is important to embrace control over up-stream processes.
The intermediate results will be reported at the next annual meeting, taking place in October 2018 in Berlin to mark the 40th anniversary of the Blue Angel ecolabelling programme.
Eva Eiderström, Director of Department of Ecolabelling and Green Consumption (SSNC) presented information campaigns at retail chains aimed to promote both conscious purchase behaviour and ecolabelled products. This year the entire chain of Willy's (199 stores) was certified with the SSNC's Bra Miljöval (Good choice) label. In general, the efforts of the Nordic ecolabelling programmes together with different stakeholder groups resulted in a high level of recognition of ecolabels amongst the population - in some cases up to 94%.
The Blue Angel's Dr Hans-Hermann Eggers
Mr Thomas Lehmann, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, presented a project on development and promotion of environmental certification and ecolabels in the Southeast countries. 38
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“There are strong reasons why investors are shifting from quarterly reports…towards identifying long term value,” says Per Bolund, while noting that lenders and shareholders are at risk of losses from a decline in value from hydrocarbon stranded assets.
Ethical investment launched at GEN conference
He cited the challenge of climate change and recent devastating weather events. “The UN Sustainable Development Goals provide a common map for the world. Investors who don't take this into account, who don't follow this map, are taking a great risk – and the risk is increasing all the time.” In a place such as Sweden, he says, “the problem is not winter coming, but that winter may not come at all.” Consumers, says Per Bolund, have a lot of power to engender change, and their collective voice “has a direct impact on the world of tomorrow. As consumers, we have to save the world a little bit every day.”
At the conference preceding the GEN AGM, delegates witnessed ecolabelling's entry to the world of high finance. Per Bolund, Sweden's Minister for Consumer and Financial Markets, distributed certificates to managers of the first funds attaining the ecolabel The Nordic Swan. As a GEN member “The Swan” operates to the strongest ecolabelling criteria in the world, based on the principles in ISO 14024, the description of “Type 1” ecolabelling.
With environmental and human rights issues also being considered by investors as never before, he says, those who do not pay attention to the related issues are dealing with risk that could lead to underperformance; he suggested that at the same time companies need to be rewarded by making the right decisions on sustainability.
According to financial journalist Jonathan Boyd (Open Door Media) the announcement means that some 3.7 billion US dollars of assets under management (AUM) across 12 investment funds are being managed in line with the criteria developed by the Nordic Ecolabelling organisation. The criteria for being awarded The Swan label were only confirmed following two years of development and consultation. Nordic Ecolabelled investment funds are required to meet 25 mandatory standards governing the various ways a fund can affect companies, including among other things the right to waiver, company choice and transparency concerning fund investments.
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Ragnar Unge, CEO of Ecolabelling Sweden, added that today's savers who have an interest in saving sustainably have been surveyed as trusting an independent ecolabel more than their own bank to show which funds are more sustainable. He referenced one survey
suggesting 80% of Swedish savers who have an interest in saving sustainably are “interested n placing a part of their savings in a sustainable fund”. "With the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, savers are now being guided to choose funds that can handle tough sustainability requirements and that have the potential to influence entrepreneurship in a more sustainable direction,” he said. Danish news agency Ritzau reported Martin Fabiansen, Director of Ecolabelling Denmark, as commenting: “The massive interest emphasises the industry's need for a strong benchmark. We are very pleased that we have already received so many committed players with us on the way to a greener Nordic financial market.” According to Bjorn-Erik Lonn, chair of the Global Ecolabelling Network, the announcement fits perfectly into the organisation's threefold mission of service, leadership and especially growth. “Our members are continually growing ecolabelling into new services such as this, and throughout further areas of the world such as India and Kazakhstan, which are our most recent members. This financial management initiative from The Nordic Swan, one of the world's oldest GEN ecolabels, is a wonderful example of leadership for our newer members.”
The funds awarded the Nordic Swan ecolabel are: Alfred Berg Hållbar Tillväxt Sverige, CB Save Earth Fund, Handelsbanken Hållbar Energi, SEB Hållbarhetsfond Sverige, Skandia Cancerfonden, Skandia Världsnaturfonden, Swedbank Robur Ethica Global, Swedbank Robur Ethica Global MEGA, Swedbank Robur Ethica Sverige, Swedbank Robur Ethica Sverige MEGA, Swedbank Robur Humanfond, and Tundra Sustainable Frontier Fund. Jon Scheiber, CEO/partner at Tundra Fonder commented: “The Nordic Ecolabel is extremely well known in the Nordic countries with 91% recognition level among consumers. That fact that Tundra Sustainable Frontier Fund has been among the first 12 funds globally to be awarded the ecolabel is a quality stamp of our local presence in new equity markets and our early efforts. Sustainable investment funds are coming in a big way and this award will help us in our expansion.”
FOR FAQs and a recording of the event go to: http://www.svanen.se/en/Newsarchive/2017 /10/The-worlds-first-Nordic-SwanEcolabelled-funds/ 40
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The Lifecycle Initiative cycle data. Ultimately it supports achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The UN Environment-hosted Life Cycle Initiative is a multi-stakeholder partnership to enable the global use of credible life cycle knowledge by private and public decision makers. It is instrumental to identify key environmental and social hotspots of a country, sector or value chains, helping prioritise actions. It also provides technical support and facilitates the knowledge exchange on emerging life cycle policies at an international level, improving the interoperability of life
The Life Cycle Initiative will deliver programmes across three main areas: technical and policy advice, capacity development, and knowledge. By 2022, the Initiative aims to mainstream Life Cycle thinking in at least 15 countries and 30 companies, training at least 2,500 policy makers, business decision makers and Life Cycle Assessment practitioners.
Coffee grinds to a stop contain coffee oil. It is being added to the London bus fuel supply, produced so far in sufficient quantity to power one bus for a whole year. In practice, it is mixed as a 20% component with mineral diesel.
Catching an espresso bus from a London bus stop will soon be reality for some of the famous big red double-deckers, while recycling of coffee cups takes a new route. With an estimated two billion cups of coffee consumed around the world daily, disposable coffee cups are a large source of waste. The UK alone accounts for 2.5 billion such cups a year, Australia around one billion. The essential problem in recycling has been separating the liquid-proof polymer lining from the fibre cup. Now British papermaker James Cropper is claiming the world's first “cupcycling” process, turning the plastic liner into other products such as cable tubing, and the fibre into highquality stationary and packaging such as Selfridge's shopping bags. The plant in Burneside has capacity for 500 million cups annually, according to Matt Mace writing in eddie news.
So next time you are running for a London bus clutching a genuinely recyclable cup of coffee, you may have a double shot at recycling – just don't complain about your bus being latte.
One of the other problems causing caffeine eco-warriors to lose sleep comes from singleuse machine capsules, pioneered with the Nespresso brand, where not only the packaging but also the grounds cause recycling issues. Now Shell, Argent Energy and Bio-bean have produced a new biofuel from the grounds that
GEN MAG • 2017
Rock, paper, planet Many generations of many cultures have played the old “rock, paper, scissors” game. Now there's a consistent winner - one of the cleverest everyday products licensed in New Zealand by Environmental Choice. Rockstock is the brand name in the Asia Pacific region for paper products made from stone. It was developed by one of Taiwan's most innovative business leaders, the Lung Meng company starting in 1999. It was exported first to the US and Japan in 2008, attracting customers away from wood based and synthetic paper for corporate promotional and stationery applications.
A 3-minute explanation of the product is here. https://youtu.be/ykVIkXyq9hQ
● It is manufactured from ground down waste stone and offcuts used in the building industry. It contains no wood fibre. ● Rockstock has a low carbon emission. ● It uses significantly less energy to produce than wood fibre paper. ● It generates no effluent in its manufacture. (water borne, airborne or solid) ● It requires no water, acid, base or bleach during production. ● Any trimmings or waste paper from production are recycled to make new paper.
Without need of special printing inks, it can be used in most situations where conventional and synthetic paper is used and offers exceptional printing, water proofing and tear resistant qualities. You can even write on it under water, and maps stay secure in the rain! Rockstock claims to be the world's most environmentally friendly paper, and among its customers are Mercedes, Porsche, Apple and Google. The International Olympic Committee Museum in Lausanne and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam also use stone paper bags.
● It is both recyclable and photodegradable (It is not bio-degradable as it does not attract insects or organisms to consume it.) ● Compostable (Commercial) where sufficient heat is present to leave only calcium carbonate.
The Stone Age is definitely back to the future, and Environmental Choice New Zealand has an enthusiastic and innovative licensee in Rockstock. They are showing off their ECNZ branding on their packaging, and produced this clever idea for recycling of mail-able water bottles produced for Trees On, a Lake Tahoe company. The company also plants a tree for every bottle sold.
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25th October, 2018 Collectively, we can create a more sustainable future with green ecolabels and use World Ecolabel Day as an agent of change in promoting sustainable lifestyles. Let's celebrate World Ecolabel Day together! www.worldecolabelday.com CREDITS Editorial direction: Michael Hooper | Creative MediaWorks Ltd Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Design: John Newcombe |
Adroit Design Ltd
Photography: GEN members Cover image: Pieszak jeans Look-book / Isko fabric. Image supplied by Danish Standards Foundation
The annual insight into the news and activities of the Global Ecolabelling Network