EU ecolabel `must not be too stringent`

The European commission has published responses to a consultation on plans to revise the EU's flower ecolabel scheme for goods and services (see our Articles section for full report).

Most respondents said criteria for awarding the label should remain 'realistically applicable' across Europe. But the criteria should also be sufficiently demanding to attract only the most environmentally-friendly products and maintain the label's reputation for environmental excellence, stakeholders said.

The views are presented in an analysis of opinions from over 160 organisations that responded to the consultation earlier this year (EED 03/01/07). The revision is intended to reduce bureaucracy and increase the number of firms applying for the label. Fresh legislation will be proposed in the first half of 2008.

A majority of stakeholders back simplified ecolabel rules, faster adoption of environmental criteria, and wider stakeholder representation on the EU's ecolabel board. Several want the label to be managed by an independent agency.

Many also support proposals to fast-track the revision of existing criteria and to make ecolabels such as the flower mandatory for public procurement 'where possible'. There should also be limits on the fees member states can charge firms applying for the label, stakeholders said.

Courtesy of ENDS Europe Daily

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