Environmental certification

Companies and products: Two vehicles for a life cycle approach?
  • Helias A. Udo de Haes
  • Geert R. de Snoo
LCA and ecolabelling


Environmental certification of companies is a promising tool for steering the economy in a more environmentally sound direction. It can also be put in a chain perspective so that companies which constitute a production-consumption chain will conclude agreements between each other with respect to their environmental performance. A legal basis is formed by the EMS of ISO 14001 and the EMAS directive of the EU. However, apart from procedural aspects, substantive aspects should also be included. The major steering factor consists of the image of a company. This in contrast to product policy, where the major steering factor lies in the purchase behaviour of consumers. The two types of life cycle approaches should complement each other.


LCA Certification environmental certification product company life cycle assessment life cycle approach product policy environmental management system EMAS ISO chain management 


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    International Organization for Standardization, in prep.: Environmental management — Life cycle assessment — Goal and scope definition and inventory analysis. ISO/CD 14041.2Google Scholar
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    International Organization for Standardization (1995): Environmental management systems-specification with guidance for use. Draft international standard ISO/DIS 14001Google Scholar
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    EEC, 1993: “EEC Council Regulation no. 1836/93. Allowing voluntary participation by companies in the industrial sector in a Community eco-management and audit scheme (EMAS).“ Official Journal of the European Communities (10-7-1993, No L 168): 1–17Google Scholar
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    White, P., B. de Smet, H.A. Udo de Haes and R. Heijungs (1995): LCA back on track: but is it one track or two? SETAC-Europe LCA News, Brussels, Vol. 5, nr 3, pp 2–4Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Ecomed Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helias A. Udo de Haes
    • 1
  • Geert R. de Snoo
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre of Environmental Science (CML)Leiden UniversityLeidenThe Netherlands

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