Guide

Ecodesign in product and service development

What is ecodesign?

Ecodesign means producing goods and services that meet your customers' needs while:

  • using the minimum levels of resources
  • having a minimum impact on the environment and society

Ecodesign involves designing or redesigning products, services, processes or systems to avoid or repair damage to the environment, society and the economy.

Ecodesign is present all around us - in sustainable flooring, green energy heating systems, eco-friendly packaging and even recyclable products.

Ecodesign principles

There are ten core environmental considerations at the heart of ecodesign:

  • using materials with less environmental impact
  • using fewer materials overall in the manufacture of products
  • using fewer resources during the manufacturing process
  • producing less pollution and waste
  • reducing the environmental impacts of distributing products
  • ensuring that products use fewer resources when they are used by end customers
  • ensuring that products cause less waste and pollution when in use
  • optimising the function of products and ensuring the most suitable service life
  • making reuse and recycling easier
  • reducing the environmental impact of disposal

You should evaluate your product or services according to these principles and their environmental impact, as well as the potential for improvement or change.

When should you consider ecodesign?

Project with large environmental impacts or natural resource use are the best candidates for an ecodesign transformation. However, you can apply ecodesign principles even in the smallest of projects by making sure that you:

  • maximise the use of sustainable materials
  • use the least amount of energy necessary
  • design a product so that is can be recycled or reused at the end of its lifecycle

Find out more about the advantages and disadvantages of ecodesign.