TNO, Strategy and Policy Coordinator of the Innovation for Sustainable Development Network (inno4sd), presented a study report “A longer lifetime for products: Benefits for consumers and companies” to the European Parliament's Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (06/2016). The report was prepared by TNO in collaboration with TU-Delft and IMCO, and was well received by members of the European Parliament.
The study finds that economic benefits from longer lifetimes are, in general, related to the competitiveness of the EU in terms of trade balance and utility for final consumers. The report specifies that a minimal increase of 1% of value added by economic activities related to a longer lifetime for products would have an aggregated effect of 7.9 billion EUR per year across the European economy.
Social benefits relate in general to the ability of all citizens to acquire skills, knowledge and employment and to provide for themselves, whilst environmental benefits generally relate to a reduction of negative external effects that reduce ecological capital without compensation in market price.
The report provides case studies of existing businesses, the (non-)legal context for an initiative on longer product lifetimes, and a wide range of policy options related to the competence areas of IMCO.
Comment from Julia Reda, Chair of the Parliamentarian Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance
“The study A longer lifetime for products: benefits for consumers and companies provides useful evaluation of the potential impact of a longer lifetime for products on the economy, on society and on the environment. The interest of the study lies in the case studies of existing businesses but also, for us legislators, in the overview of the legal and extra-legal context and of the policy options to optimize the benefits of a longer product lifetime.
We thank the authors for their overview of the existing situation, both in terms of producer regulation and in terms of consumer protection… the potential future initiatives, legislative or non-legislative, which would be likely to have the most positive impact. We welcome the mix of policy recommendations in the study and their classification in terms of policy costs, societal benefits and legal/technical feasibility.”
For more information contact Carlos.Montalvo@tno.nl or Elmer.Rietveld@tno.nl
Click to download the report ‘A longer lifetime for products: Benefits for consumers and companies’.