The IMPRO studies
The objective of the Sustainable Production and Consumption (SUSPROC) action is to support the implementation and further development of the EU Strategy for Sustainable Development, the EU Environmental Action Plan as well as the integration of environmental concerns in other European policy areas. SUSPROC provides objective, quality-controlled socio-economic analyses and technical support regarding key aspects of sustainable consumption and production. The action develops and applies analytical modelling capabilities, performs economic analyses and impact assessments, and carries out techno-economic characterisations of selected technologies products and processes
The activities of the action are concentrated around the following initiatives from the Commission: the Action Plans on Sustainable Production and Consumption and on Sustainable Industrial Policy, Product Policy, the Flagship Initiative "Resource efficient Europe" and the Thematic Strategy on Waste and Recycling. Additional information on SUSPROC is available on its website.
Product policy support
SUSPROC is carrying out techno-economic research on product groups with the aim to provide the evidence needed for the implementation of environmental product policy instruments, as mentioned in the Sustainable Consumption and Production Action Plan.
The focus of the work is on the development of criteria proposals for EU 66/2010 Regulation (Ecolabel Regulation) and criteria proposals for COM(2008)400 (Communication on Green Public Procurement GPP). In addition work is carried out which prepares the ground for the potential future application of Directive 2009/125/EC EuP (Ecodesign Directive) and Directive 2010/30/EU (European Energy Label Directive).
SUSPROC provided the scientific basis for the identification of products and policy measures to develop and implement the European Commission Communication on Integrated Product Policy (COM (2003) 302 final). The IPTS' work on EIPRO (Environmental Impact of Products) assessed which products have the greatest environmental impact from a life-cycle perspective.
Based on these results IPTS identified the improvement potential (IMPRO studies) to reduce the environmental impacts from passenger cars, food and and housing respectively. These three product groups have been identified as contributing the most to the life-cycle environmental impacts induced by the EU-25 final consumption.
View the report: Environmental Impact of Products (EIPRO)
Waste and recycling
The IPTS supports the Commission in the development of end-of-waste criteria, under the revised Waste Framework Directive (2008/98/EC). This includes:
- Proposing candidate waste streams for the definition of end-of-waste criteria based on operational selection criteria according to the principles set out in the Waste Framework Directive (2008) and the Thematic Strategy on the Prevention and Recycling of Waste (2005);
- Developing a methodology (including the frameworks for the technical analysis and impact assessment) for proposing and assessing end-of-waste criteria under the WFD.
- Applying the above mentioned methodology to a number of specific recyclable waste materials agreed by Member States, including ferrous and aluminium scrap, copper and copper alloy scrap, waste paper, waste glass, waste plastic, and biodegradable waste subject to biological treatment (compost/digestate).
EMAS Sectoral Reference Documents
SUSPROC is carrying out a pilot study on the development of Sectoral Reference Documents (SRDs) on best environmental management practice.
The development of such documents is included in Article 46 of the Regulation on The Community Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS). In addition to detailed technical information describing best environmental management practice to improve environmental performance, these reference documents also contain sector-specific key performance core indicators, and benchmarks of excellence. SRDs will be elaborated for a range of sectors identified as priority sectors. In the first phase and as part of the pilot project documents are being produced for the following sectors: retail trade, tourism, construction, and public administration.
Tools for Environmentally Extended Input-Output Analysis (EE-IO) for Europe
The IPTS is currently expanding its capacity to conduct studies in the domain of Input-Output analysis (data & modelling) in support of EU Environment and Sustainability policies. Models are used to evaluate, at regional, national or international level the impact of different policies on macroeconomic variables such as gross domestic product, employment, consumption, productivity as well as on the environment
To this end IPTS is developing software tools for Input-output analysis complemented with an Environmentally Extended Input-output database for the EU27.
A recent application has been the involvement in the preparation of the Communications from the Commission "Biofuels Progress Report" COM (2006)845 and "Renewable Energy Road Map" COM (2006) 848, for which the Competitiveness and Sustainibility Unit of IPTS developed an IO-based model to provide an analysis on the EU25-wide impacts on Employment and GDP of different scenarios. .
SUSPROC has provided, as a contribution to the Communication 'A Single Market for the 21st century Europe'an analysis of the most important sectors in each of the individual euro area Member States by means of input-output analysis in order to assess the challenges for market based economic adjustment in the framework of the European Monetary Union.