Incorporating eco-design in the production processes of the industry has become an increasingly evident need for the well-being of the environment, people and companies themselves, regardless of their scope. In this post we explain how this phenomenon works and why it is so important.
What is ecodesign?
Ecodesign consists of integrating the principles of environmental responsibility in the design of goods and services. The objective is to guarantee ecological sustainability and the protection of nature throughout the entire life cycle of the product.
It should be clarified that ecodesign is not a productive method in itself, but rather works as one more piece in industrial design procedures. In this way, the study of the environmental impact of the products is introduced as a requirement for making strategic decisions (along with other variables such as quality, functionality, aesthetics or safety).
The criteria that companies and institutions must follow to incorporate eco-design into their environmental management systems are defined in the ISO 14006 standard. Likewise, this way of working is part of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) established by the United Nations, within the promotion of an inclusive and sustainable industrialization based on scientific research and the technological capacity of companies.
Why is ecodesign so important?
The environmental impact of a product manufactured on a large scale can be irreversible for the environment. Understanding what ecodesign is implies being fully aware of this reality, since the pollution derived from the extraction of raw materials and the manufacture of consumer objects contributes to global warming and the destruction of ecosystems.
On the other hand, the use of ecodesign to produce goods and services is very beneficial for people, companies and society as a whole, since it has as its axis the optimization of processes and the reduction of waste and harmful gas emissions , thus contributing to the conservation of the environment.
Advantages of ecodesign for companies
In addition to protecting and caring for the environment, ecodesign entails a series of direct benefits for the competitiveness of organizations and their long-term sustainability:
- It guarantees compliance with the laws and the environmental responsibility clauses contained in public tenders.
- It saves costs and facilitates economic viability due to reduced waste and greater efficiency in manufacturing and the consumption of materials, energy and natural resources.
- It creates more effective and durable products thanks to technological innovation, helping companies to differentiate themselves from the competition and improve their image.
How to measure the environmental impact of a product?
The evaluation of the environmental impact of a product includes the evaluation of its life cycle from a comprehensive point of view, that is, a detailed analysis of each of the stages that take place from its conception to its disappearance.
Therefore, to estimate the environmental impact of a product correctly, it is essential to assess the design of the goods and services as a whole, studying the negative consequences on the environment of the following phases:
- Selection, obtaining and transportation of raw materials.
- Manufacture, distribution and marketing of products.
- Mode of use by end recipients.
- Recycling times and methods for waste treatment.
The value of strategic design
Ecodesign is part of the strategic design policies that every company must follow to promote the development of its business. In fact, reducing the environmental impact of a product can be as important for the survival of a company as improving the quality and benefits it offers to its customers, whether they are institutions, individuals or other professionals.
Medium and long-term planning is essential in an increasingly competitive market that is aware of the problems of nature and the environment. If you want to improve your environmental management system to adapt it to current requirements, our strategic design and prototyping service will help you successfully implement eco-design in the different stages of your production processes.