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PEF Screening Study: Decorative Paints

Product Environmental Footprint Screening Study

Ecomatters performed the Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) screening study on decorative paints for CEPE — the European Council of the Paint, Printing Ink and Artists’ Colours Industry. The primary goal of the project was to pilot the newly developed PEF methodologies within the paint industry in Europe.

To do this, six reference products were selected to represent the four main categories of decorative paints. Then, the products were evaluated and analyzed according to the PEF guidelines. The results were used to support the development of the Product Environmental Footprint Category Rules (PEFCR) for the decorative paints product group and to test the methodology.

Ecomatters applied their expertise and took a flexible approach to contribute to the project. This included:

  • Autonomous execution of the analysis based on defined questions
  • Adjustment to the project requirements, goal, and scope
  • Specific and deep knowledge of PEF/LCA methodologies
  • Flexible and effective feedback and presentation of results
  • Efficient execution of the study and report

PEF background

The European Commission is developing the PEF methodology as a way to standardize environmental footprint calculations. In order to test the methodologies within different industries, 27 PEF pilot projects were launched in 2013 and 2014. CEPE  was selected to lead the Technical Secretariat of the pilot project for decorative paints. Therefore, CEPE commissioned Ecomatters to conduct the Screening study on select products in this category.

Currently, projects such as this are going on in order to support the development of the category rules for calculating environmental footprint in each industry. The idea is to have a system where most products will have customized guidelines for calculating environmental footprint.

In addition, this methodology is an initiative within the Resource Efficiency Roadmapand will potentially be relevant for future green public procurement, eco-labelling schemes and tax frameworks (e.g. value added tax, VAT).

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