Enhancing product sustainability: setting the way forward

APPLiA was invited to share the views and experience of the home appliance sector at the online conference organised by Lighting Europe, on sustainable products and the future of Ecodesign. 

In the broader framework of the EU Green Deal and the New Circular Economy Action Plan, the European Commission announced a Sustainable Products Initiative aimed at bringing all products in the EU market in line with technical standards for sustainability and thus fit for the pursuit of a climate neutral, resource efficient and circular economy. The legislative initiative will entail a revision of the Ecodesign Directive, widening its scope beyond energy-related products, and further deliver on circularity.

APPLiA Europe, representing the home appliance industry, was invited to join the online conference organised by Lighting Europe, on sustainable products and the future of Ecodesign. Paolo Falcioni, APPLiA’s Director General shared the views and experience of a sector that delivers energy efficiency at all stages of the product lifecycle and fosters the sharing of a more sustainable practice across European citizens. 

“Counting on over 20 years of implementation, the current Ecodesign Directive proved being an extremely effective tool in regulating the energy-related products it was originally designed for,” kicked off Paolo Falcioni. To this extent, he continued, “we should make sure to capitalise on this success story without opening up the existing legislation and instead, rely on a product-specific and fact-based approach.” Indeed, the adoption of a one-size-fits-all methodology would risk compromising a well-functioning system already in place and capable per se, to address further material and resource efficiency issues. Building on this, “parallel legislations should be considered for non-energy related products to ensure the achievement of the ultimate sustainability goal,” said Mr Falcioni. With this in mind, enforceability is a key aspect of the issue, “to be however tailored and applied on a product-by-product basis.”

Joint efforts at all levels are needed to best address the subject. Indeed, the last decade has registered a rising trend in the global demand for more efficient and sustainable products, to reduce energy and resource consumption. In this context, we must ensure that an effective strategy is put in place to turn the existing challenges into opportunities for Europe, and best deliver on sustainability. With the purpose of supporting this aim, APPLiA has developed a website accompanying consumers from the design phase to end-of-life of products and showcasing the achievements of the industry, as based on numerical data. For more information, you can visit www.circularappliances.eu