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The Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation (ESPR)

At Cirmar, we are committed to driving sustainability through innovation. European regulations are one of the instruments that will help accelerate the transition to more sustainable, circular practices. The European Union’s Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation (ESPR) is a sign of progress, aiming to revolutionise the way products are designed, produced, and consumed. Here’s what you need to know.

Consumers like you and I can use the Digital Product Passport to access product information by scanning a QR code or other identifier.

ESPR: a step forward

The proposed Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation (ESPR), unveiled on 30 March 2022, represents a significant step forward. It can be seen as the successor of the Ecodesign Directive 2009/125/EC. This directive has mostly had its impact on energy consumption, which saved European consumers lots of money, and meant a significant contribution to emission reduction.

Unlike its predecessor, which primarily focused on energy-related products, the ESPR extends its reach to encompass a broader range of goods, establishing a comprehensive framework to enhance circularity, energy performance, and overall environmental sustainability. A more than welcome development, broadening the scope as well as the potential positive impact of the regulation.

Key Provisions of ESPR

ESPR introduces a framework for setting ecodesign requirements tailored to specific product groups. These requirements concern various aspects, including product durability, reusability, upgradability, and reparability, as well as considerations regarding substances hindering circularity, energy and resource efficiency, recycled content, remanufacturing, recycling, and carbon footprint.

More importantly, the ESPR mandates the adoption of the Digital Product Passport (DPP) in which all of this can be captured and secured. This will help consumers and companies with essential information to make informed choices, facilitate repairs and recycling, and enhance transparency regarding a product’s environmental impact.

The DPP is a tool that helps companies make informed choices. Creating insights gives direction to sustainable progress.

The first products that will require DPP’s, are textiles, electronics and batteries. The initial plan was to oblige these product groups to carry a DPP from 2024 onwards, but the current deadline is set at 2027. In total, around 30 product groups will follow as the EU rolls out the regulation for more products.

Global Implications and Collaboration

ESPR’s regulations apply universally to all products entering the EU market, irrespective of their origin. It therefore represents an important step in the right direction. Circular products can expect a boost, since their environmental impact will be visibly lower than their counterparts. It will become more interesting for companies to invest in sustainable alternatives to their current products. DPP’s like Cirmar’s C_passport® will also develop as data exchange is streamlined and standards are developed. But this can only happen through application in real-life use cases: a standard will be distilled from experiences. Still, the value of DPP’s reaches far beyond compliance with legislation. Cirmar’s use cases demonstrate that the financial upside of transparancy and gaining insights into material use and derived impact, is equally relevant, if not more so!

Join Us in Shaping a Sustainable Future

At Cirmar, we empower businesses in their transition towards a circular economy. Let’s use the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation as a nudge in the right direction. It represents a new standard that not only applies to companies within Europe, but to any product that is sold on the European market. This represents an opportunity to move towards more sustainable, circular products on a level playing field. Regardless of the legislative incentive to get started with DPP’s, it has a direct positive impact on your company’s sustainable proposition. Excited to find out how? Get in touch, or give our free trial a go. We’re happy to guide you on your path towards the circular economy.

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