International review of ecodesign programs for products and lessons learned for China
Since the 1980s, ecodesign has emerged as a new guiding principle for integrating environmental aspects into product design and development, with the aim of reducing adverse environmental life-cycle impacts. For China, the concept of ecodesign is becoming important in advancing Chinese industrial development while mitigating the rise in national energy consumption and emissions. We reviewed 28 existing ecodesign labels and supporting programs adopted globally to identify lessons learned and best practices for the development of potential ecodesign labeling programs in China. We find that systematic framework and process and inclusion of various stakeholders in developing criteria, certification requirements and supporting policies in the form of green procurement, small local pilot subsidies, and active outreach and communication are key success factors of international programs. Based on international experiences and by leveraging existing Chinese frameworks for labeling and policies, China has an opportunity to lead in developing broader environmental criteria for a new ecodesign labeling program.