22. März 2022

Mandatory environmental impact assessments and labels for digital products

Offene BriefeParlamentarische Aktivitäten

Brussels, 22th of March 2022

Empowering consumers in a digital and green transition: mandatory environmental impact assessments and labels for digital products



Dear VicePresident Timmermans,
Dear VicePresident Vestager,

Dear VicePresident Jourova,

Dear Commissioner Reynders,

Dear Commissioner Breton,

Dear Commissioner Sinkevičius,


Two of the European Commission’s key priorities are Europe fit for the Digital Age and the
Green Deal. To reach both of these priorities, we must ensure the digital transition promotes
and does not hamper the green transition. We can no longer ignore the environmental
footprint of the ICTsector, which according to the Commission in its Communication
COM(2020)67 is “significant, estimated at 59% of the world’s total electricity use and more
than 2% of all emissions.” And the digital sector is only expected to grow. The European Union
must only accelerate innovation and digitalisation in a way compatible with our CO2 reduction
goals, climate neutrality aims and high environmental standards. This means digital
technologies and electronics need to become sustainable and circular over their entire lifecycle,
including products, production processes, necessary infrastructures and waste management


On the 30th of March the Commission will present the Sustainable products policy initiative,
including a revision of the Ecodesign Directive and Empowering Consumers for the Green
Transition. Information for consumers to make sustainable choices is currently lacking,
fragmented or incomparable due to different methodologies. This system facilitates
greenwashing towards European consumers, hampers companies in the digital sector that are
working hard to become sustainable and above all poses a danger to our planet.


This is why we call for mandatory environmental impact assessments of ICT products,
using a standardized lifecycle assessment methodology and a mandatory environmental
label informing consumers of this impact in a clear and easy way. Moreover, we call for
environmental standards for digital devices, eelectronics and software. The EU must use
these environmental assessments, labels and minimum standards as a driver for sustainable
innovation in the digital sector.


With clear, harmonised, quantifiable and comparable mandatory reporting of
environmental impact of products we benefit consumers, businesses and, ultimately, our
planet. Consumers and businesses can only make sustainable choices with the relevant
knowledge and data. Mandatory environmental impact assessments and labels will empower
consumers to make sustainable choices, voluntary labels will clearly not.


A mandatory environmental impact assessment and label will incentivise, inform and
reward companies becoming more sustainable. Only with mandatory labels, sustainable
companies will have a level playing field, unlike if such labels are voluntary. Mandatory
environmental impact assessments will also show all businesses where they can make
production processes more environmentally friendly, less wasteful and save costs. It will also
contribute to our circular economy, including recycling of raw materials, strengthening the
EU’s strategic autonomy. Lastly, a mandatory environmental impact assessment and label is
perfectly feasible, desirable and necessary as more than 20 sustainable digital businesses,
including SME’s stressed in their call through the ‘One Green Label’ Digital Coalition. (1


This is why we urgently call for standardised methods and prescriptive formats reporting
environmental impact over the entire life cycle and labels informing consumers to be
determined together with industry, academics and civil society. These should be complemented
by environmental minimum standards for digital devices, eelectronics and software.
Ultimately, this will incentivise sustainable choices by consumers, drive and reward innovation
in sustainable ICT by businesses and establish accountability towards society. Only then we
can achieve our twin transitions: a Europe Fit for the Digital Age that promotes and does not
hamper the Green Deal.


MEP Kim van Sparrentak (Greens/EFA)
MEP David Cormand (Greens/EFA)

MEP Rasmus Andresen (Greens/EFA)

MEP Claude Gruffat (Greens/EFA)

MEP Marie Toussaint (Greens/EFA)

MEP Malte Gallée (Greens/EFA)

MEP Rosa D’Amato (Greens/EFA)

MEP Ville Niinistö (Greens/EFA)

MEP Benoit Biteau (Greens/EFA)

MEP Damien Carême (Greens/EFA)

MEP Michael Bloss (Greens/EFA)

MEP Tilly Metz (Greens/EFA)

MEP Patrick Breyer (Greens/EFA)

MEP Ciarán Cuffe (Greens/EFA)

MEP Ignazio Corrao (Greens/EFA)

MEP Mounir Satouri (Greens/EFA)

MEP Saskia Bricmont (Greens/EFA)

MEP Michèle Rivasi (Greens/EFA)

MEP Manuela Ripa (Greens/EFA)

MEP Sara Matthieu (Greens/EFA)

MEP Niklas Nienaß (Greens/EFA)

MEP Katrin Langensiepen (Greens/EFA)

MEP Markéta Gregorová (Greens/EFA)

MEP Mikulas Peksa (Greens/EFA)

MEP Eleonora Evi (Greens/EFA)

MEP Thomas Waitz (Greens/EFA)

MEP Margrete Auken (Greens/EFA)

MEP Kira PeterHansen (Greens/EFA)

MEP Tineke Strik (Greens/EFA)

MEP Bas Eickhout (Greens/EFA)

MEP Reinhard Bütikofer (Greens/EFA)

MEP Sergey Lagodinsky (Greens/EFA)

MEP Terry Reintke (Greens/EFA)

MEP Philippe Lamberts (Greens/EFA)

MEP Ernest Urtasun (Greens/EFA)

MEP GwenDelbos Corfield (Greens/EFA)
MEP Grace O’Sullivan (Greens/EFA)
MEP Henrike Hahn (Greens/EFA)

MEP Alviina Alametsä (Greens/EFA)

MEP Petros Kokkalis (The Left)

MEP Martin Buschmann (NI)