Environmental Claims for Textiles on the Nordic Market
Suomen ympäristökeskus | Published March 19, 2018 - Deadline April 19, 2018
Environmental Claims for Textiles on the Nordic Market The Working Group for Sustainable Consumption and Production (HKP/SPC) of the Nordic Council of Ministers hereby calls for tenders for a project aimed at mapping the environmental labels and declarations used for consumer textiles in the Nordic market. The study will encompass environmental labels and declarations of the ISO types I and II. The results of the project results will provide a basis for planning future activities, as well as disseminate knowledge about the prevalence of environmental labels and claims in the consumer textiles market. The study will also serve as a starting point for further research on the subject, as well as support Nordic consumer agencies working with misleading marketing through green claims. Background The fact that the various stages of textile production and consumption have considerable environmental, as well as social, impact throughout the product life cycle, has been confirmed through numerous studies. Consumer behavior and psychology with regards to disposal of textile products has also been extensively investigated. Recent studies show that approximately 1.2 million Swedes express an interest in changing their consumption behavior in order to achieve environmental sustainability. In response to the increased consumer environmental awareness, many traders have created environmental profiles through launching collections, certifications and labels, specifically geared towards the environmentally conscious consumer. However, the different environmental labels and schemes differ widely. It is often unclear and difficult to discern what a certain label, certification or self-declared claim actually means from an environmental point of view, if anything. The fact that the numerous trader initiatives are often unclear and differ from one another to a great extent, combined with the sheer number of different labels and claims on the market, most likely makes it very difficult for the consumers to make informed business decisions with regards to sustainability and the environment. The use of environmental arguments in marketing, for example expressed through labels or certifications or claims, is subject to legal requirements with regards to reliability. The consumer protection authorities tasked with market surveillance regarding misleading marketing have an important role to play in the strive towards sustainable consumption, primarily through surveillance regarding green claims and greenwashing. The amount of different environmental schemes on the consumer textiles market, in conjunction with the difficulty in discerning what the schemes actually entail, might impede consumer agencies from effective surveillance. EU funded and published in 2014 Green claims report, which is a thorough analysis of the use of labels and claims at the European market. This is to be taken as a background in this work, and focus on textiles and the Nordic market. - At the page https://ec.europa.eu/info/live-work-travel-eu/consumers/unfair-treatment/unfair- treatment-policy-information_en#environmental-claims download: Environmental claims for non-food products In view of the situation described above, there is a need to map the extent and number of different environmental labels and certifications in the consumer textile market, as well as to thoroughly illustrate the concrete meaning and content of the respective labels and certifications. Aim The aim of the project, in brief, is to provide a structured and clear inventory of the different environmental labelling and certification schemes that the consumers face on the Nordic textile market. This to gain knowledge of the extent and content of the environmental arguments that the consumers face, which might then be used as a basis for further studies, to aid consumer agencies in their work and to facilitate stakeholder dialogue. Target groups The target groups are decision-makers and officials primarily at local, regional and national level in the Nordic countries, but also at international level. Project context The HKP/SPC working group is to contribute to the implementation of the Nordic Environmental Action Plan 2013 – 2018 http://norden.diva-portal.org/smash/record.jsf?dswid=7447&pid=diva2%3A701437&c=3&searchType=SIMPLE&language=en&query=Environmental+Action+Plan+2013&af=%5B%5D&aq=%5B%5B%5D%5D&aq2=%5B%5B%5D%5D&aqe=%5B%5D&noOfRows=50&sortOrder=author_sort_asc&sortOrder2=title_sort_asc&onlyFullText=false&sf=all The activities of the groups must reflect the priorities of the Nordic Environmental Action Plan 2013 -2018, in Chapter 1. Inclusive green development, 1.1 Sustainable productions and consumption and 1.2. Resource efficiency and waste, with an emphasis on resource efficiency. The HKP/SPC working group should focus on efforts to promote green social development, which includes preventing emissions and waste through resource efficiency in consumption and production. The HKP/SPC working group should contribute to international development within its areas of responsibility. The project should be conducted in cooperation between at least three Nordic countries (or Nordic autonomies) This means that the project should be clearly anchored to at least three Nordic countries, e.g. through consulting organisations or their consultants working in, or interviews and other data collection taking place in, at least three Nordic countries or autonomies. Steering group The HKP/SPC working group will select 3-5 representatives who will act as a steering group for the project. The project should be carried out in close cooperation with the steering group and the first meeting, that must be attended by all the sub-consultants, shall take place within one month after signing the agreement. The contract is signed with the Finnish Environment Institute in Helsinki that hosts the secretariat of HKP. The steering group and the SCP group will give final approval to the results. Expected results The SCP group will expect to receive an extensive, complete inventory of the various environmental labels and certifications used for consumer textiles in at least three of the Nordic countries, covering goods for sale on the Internet as well as in physical stores. The report will include an assessment of the impact of said labels and certifications with regards to the feasible environmental benefits of each of the labels and/or certifications. The study must be academically valid and reliable, and possible to use for planning of further activities within the respective target groups. Deliverables: - A comprehensive report presenting the results of the study. The report should be written in one of the Nordic languages but must contain a summary in English. The report must entail a clear and transparent summary account of the environmental labels and certificates that have been found, and the factual content of such labels and certificates, preferably in charted form for easy overview, - A presentation (oral plus a power point presentation) of the completed report to be given to the HKP group at the end of the project. Tenders The deadline for tenders is 19. April 2018 at midnight (CET). The tender can be written in English, or a Scandinavian language. The tender will contain a description of how the contractor intends to carry out the assignment, a proposed price in DKK for the costs relating to the consultants working time and any travel, as well as information about the skills and experience of the consultant regarding the formal criteria and Nordic cooperation. Application form http://www.norden.org/sv/nordiska-ministerraadet/ministerraad/nordiska-ministerraadet-foer-miljoe-mr-m/stoed-fraan-nordiska-ministerraadets-miljoesamarbete/ansoegningsskema-coverletter-og-engelske-retningslinier-for-ansoegninger A link to the Tender Call is also available at www.norden.org/hkp The tender must be sent by e-mail to the project coordinator of the HKP/SCP group, Camilla Sederholm, at Camilla.Sederholm@miljo.fi Proposed timetable 19 April kl. 24:00 (CET) deadline for tenders 30 April, Selection of consultant 14 May, Project Launch 7 September, Short status report ahead of HKP meeting. 1 October, Draft with account of labels and declarations surveyed, preliminary account of main findings. 30 October, Final Draft with summary account according to deliverables stated, presentation of the content of labels and declarations in charted form and containing summary in English. 30 November, Final deliverables: finalized report and power point presentation. Selection of consultant The most important criteria in the selection of the consultant will be: • Documented knowledge and experience regarding misleading marketing including greenwashing, environmental labels and claims, evaluation of environmental performance of products (e.g. life cycle assessment). • Experience in Nordic cooperation • Project management • Project description, and plan for dissemination of results to target groups • Timetable • Offered price and budget of the project (VAT excluded) Budget The project has a maximum budget of DKK 150 000 Dkk. This total (VAT excluded) includes all costs relating to the contractor’s work and as described in the section Project elements (e.g. travel costs to present the results). The cost of possible publication is outside the budget of the project and will be separately financed by the HKP/SPC group. Contact us For questions concerning content: Joséphine Slotte at firstname.lastname@example.org, +46 76 110 4138 For administrative queries: Camilla Sederholm, Coordinator of the Working Group for Sustainable Consumption and Production (the HKP/SCP group): email@example.com, Tel.: +358 400 930 886 We look forward to receiving your tender!