The ‘UK Assessment of Footprinting Methods’ policy and technical reports have now been published and are available on Defra's website or direct from our publications page.  The reports, which were commissioned by Defra and delivered by Oakdene Hollins in 2015, investigate the environmental footprinting methodologies being used by a range of UK business sectors, in the context of the European Commission’s ongoing Environmental Footprint Pilots initiative.

Environmental footprinting is an approach for measuring the environmental impact of a product or organisation. This study investigated the level of uptake of environmental footprinting by UK businesses to see which, and how many, of the different methods they use, and to assess the costs and benefits of using them. The work was commissioned in the context of the EC's development of common EU-wide methodologies for conducting product environmental footprints (PEFs) and organisational environmental footprinting (OEFs).

Our study showed that UK businesses see that environmental footprinting is useful, but found limited evidence for the benefits purported by the EC for establishing common EU-wide methodologies in terms of enhancing cross-border trade - nor for savings to businesses in applying multiple methods. Companies were sceptical about the added value of using a single method across the EC, and whether this would lead to any further resource efficiency savings above those already achieved.

Click here to download the technical and policy reports.

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