After Kyoto Protocol and the «Climate and Energy package» adopted by the Council of the European Union in 2008, Companies’ voluntary commitment for the evaluation of the environmental footprint and for the reduction of the GHG emissions are increasing. Also cosmetic companies are working on it
The concept of a Carbon Footprint captures the interest of businesses, consumers, and policy makers alike. Investors watch the carbon footprint of their portfolios as an indicator of investment risks. Purchasing managers are curious about the carbon footprint of their supply chains, and consumers are increasingly offered carbon-labeled products. Carbon footprints have become popular in spite of the term being a misnomer; it refers to the mass of cumulated CO2 emissions, for example, through a supply
chain or through the life-cycle of a product, not some sort of measure of area. It is most appropriately calculated using life-cycle assessment or input−output analysis.
Industry voluntary standards
Given the interest in the carbon footprint of products, services, companies, and investment portfolios, European policies aimed at reducing emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) setting out specific mandatory reductions as well as measures to contain total GHG emissions on a voluntary basis for certain sectors of industry, including the cosmetic one. Moreover, market players increasingly request and value products and services featuring a reduced environmental footprint. This context eventually led to the development of standards intended for the quantification the carbon footprint of products. Results show the general effectiveness of carbon footprint quantification, both as a means of monitoring and reducing emissions and as a way to enhance the visibility of a company’s awareness of sustainability issues. In Italy, the Ministry for the Environment, Land and Sea is promoting, through the Task Force for the Environmental Footprint, the voluntary use of such tools in over 200 companies. The program of voluntary agreements aims at realizing a market analysis, in collaboration with the Italian private sector, to experiment on a large scale and optimize different methodology of environmental performance taking into account the differences in the particularities of each economic sector, including the cosmetic one, in order to balance and render them repeatable.
The Engineer Armando Romaniello is the Marketing, Industry Management and Product Certification Director of an Italian Organization called Certiquality. He asserts that in the context just described, Certiquality is one of the most important italian company to provide specialised certification, environmental, health and safety management systems and other systems such as information security management systems, as well as in certifying products and in providing auditing and professional training services. Certiquality certification is the issuance of a certificate by an independent third party which attests to the fact that a company, product or service conforms to a specified standard Certiquality was established by Federchimica and Assolombarda, it is accredited for the mandatory EU Emissions Trading Scheme, is the only accredited entity in Italy for GHG quantification and inventories in accordance with UNI EN ISO 14064-1: 2012. Certiquality provides a highly technical certification service with high added value. Certiquality validates carbon footprint measurement methodologies and verifies data related to the carbon footprint of a product or service over a given period. The company is then issued an attestation of verification. Certiquality can efficiently work with large companies having one or several sites; nationwide SMEs and companies identified by their reference areas, Central government, local govenment, and foreign manufacturing sites of Italian companies. The companies intrested in Carbon Foot Print certification to demonstrate their commitment to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, are companies manufacturing consumer goods in many sectors, such as, food, detergents, personal care products, manufactured goods.
Services and benefits from certiquality
Certiquality, which was the first entity to be accredited for the mandatory EU Emissions Trading Scheme, is the only UNI EN ISO 14064-1: 2012 accredited entity in Italy. Certiquality provides a highly technical certification service with high added value. It is validates, according to the criteria set out in UNI EN ISO 14064-3: 2012, the methodology of emissions inventory planning, management and reporting and verifies data related to a given period (usually one calendar year). The company is then issued a verification statement. Between the many services offered by Certiquality, there are, for example Personal services, for instance in the tourism or events industry; business services; public administration services. Carbon Footprint of Products certification allows the companies lots of important benefits, such as:
-Increasing companies’ market share and provides them with a competitive advantage as well as allowing the companies to differentiate themselves from competitors by having a footprint verified
-Develop a knowledge base for identifying any emission reduction measures leading to benefits (including economic benefit) in terms of reduced energy consumption or raw material requirements.
-Facilitate your access to the public or private «green procurement» markets
-Facilitate green supply chain management
-Enhance your reputation and company image
-Prevent «greenwashing» risks through third-party verification
-Use marketing strategies designed to associate new customer requirements in terms of social and environmental values with the products or services purchased.
THE VERIFICATION PROCESS FROM CERTIQUALITY
The certification process includes a documentary analysis of the information prepared by the company for the product or service concerned over a given period and a subsequent inspection on the organisation’s premises. This concludes in the delivery of a report and of an attestation of verification. Such activity will be repeated for each required time period.
Reducing chemical industry emissions
Reducing the EU’s carbon footprint, that is our total carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, is a key objective of the EU’s climate and energy policy. The chemical industry is committed to contributing to the EU’s 2020 climate goals by further improving its own processes and by encouraging the use of chemical products that enable emissions savings along the value chain. The carbon footprint of all human activities relates to our impact on the atmosphere, particularly our use of energy. Like many other energy-intensive industries, the European cosmetic industry remains sensitive on this issue, both as a major consumer of energy and as an industry that seeks to address the global challenge of climate change. The European chemical industry has already made significant efforts to reduce its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Between 1990 and 2008, it reduced its GHG emissions by 42% in absolute terms and by 66% in specific terms, that is, per unit of production. With a reduction of 96 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents since 1990, the chemical industry alone has achieved nearly one third of the EU commitment under the Kyoto Protocol to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 8% between 1990 and 2012. The chemical industry continues to identify further GHG abatement opportunities in its sites.
di D.Barillaro, cosmetologist