Adhesives Magazine

BASF Uses New Eco-Efficiency Protocol

October 1, 2009
BASF is the first to have eco-efficiency analysis methodology validated by independent, third-party NSF International.

(Left to right) Bob Ferguson, NSF vice president; Edward Madzy, BASF director, EHS Product Regulation/Product Stewardship; Christopher Bradlee, BASF Market Development manager; John Serafano, BASF Marketing manager; Patrick Davison, NSF senior project manager; Kevan Lawlor, NSF president and CEO.


NSF International, an independent, non-profit organization committed to improving and protecting public health and the environment, has announced a new eco-efficiency protocol, NSF Protocol 352 (NSF P352), to validate and verify eco-efficiency analyses. BASF, the world’s leading chemical company, is the first to have its Eco-Efficiency Analysis (EEA) methodology used to evaluate the economic and environmental impact of products or processes validated by NSF.

Eco-efficiency means creating more goods and services while consuming fewer resources and generating less waste and pollution, according to the World Business Council for Sustainable Development Web site (www.wbcsd.org/plugins/DocSearch/details.asp?type=DocDet&ObjectId=MTgwMjc). NSF P352 establishes requirements for the content of an eco-efficiency analysis to ensure consistency, objectivity and transparency in all eco-efficiency analyses, which is necessary given the influx of greenwashing (the act of making a misleading claim regarding the environmental benefits of a product or service). In BASF’s case, it also provides a means for verification of BASF’s individual EEA study results adhering to the eco-efficiency methodology.

“BASF saw the need to raise the bar for eco-efficiency analysis and looked to NSF and others to help establish the new protocol,” said Edward Madzy, BASF’s director of Product Stewardship and Regulations. “We are glad that NSF P352 is now available for widespread adoption and will help eliminate greenwashing.

“At BASF, we embrace sustainability, and the achievement of being the first company to have an eco-efficiency analysis validated by NSF International demonstrates our leadership in sustainable development practices.”

NSF P352 was developed, reviewed and approved by stakeholders from academia, industry, and consumer product companies to fulfill the need for an objective and universal method for companies to analyze the sustainability of their products and services. BASF’s product stewardship team initiated the development of NSF P352, working in cooperation with NSF International and other independent organizations, by which BASF’s EEA methodology was validated.

BASF’s EEA of one of its Joncryl® products, a water-based resin for the printing and packaging industry, is the first study to undergo verification by NSF International for eco-efficiency analysis. For successfully completing these verification processes on both the eco-efficiency tool and for the data relating to the eco-efficiency of the product, BASF can use the NSF Mark in literature and marketing materials highlighting the EEA tool and Joncryl. BASF’s study results and findings of the verification process are also listed on NSF’s Web site, www.nsf.org/business/eco_efficiency/. The verifications are valid for three years, after which time the EEA will be re-evaluated and updated.

BASF’s EEA tool quantifies the sustainability of products or processes throughout the entire lifecycle, beginning with the extraction of raw materials through the end of life disposal or recycling of the product. It compares two or more products analyzed from the end-use perspective to obtain comprehensive data on the total cost of ownership and the impact on the environment. The analysis can be applied to all market segments ranging from printing and packaging to automotive. To date, more than 400 studies have been launched or completed internally, as well as with customers, suppliers and governments in both North America and Europe.

“NSF shares BASF’s commitment to the environment, and we applaud their leadership in helping to develop an intelligent methodology, which provides solutions that improve the environment and the economy,” said Bob Ferguson, NSF vice president.

About NSF International

NSF International, an independent, non-profit organization, certifies products and writing standards for food, water, and consumer goods. Founded in 1944, it is committed to protecting public health and safety worldwide. NSF is a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Food and Water Safety and Indoor Environment. NSF Engineering and Research Services (ERS) uses all of NSF’s capabilities to accommodate customers’ testing needs. ERS can be used to complete research and development testing, validate manufacturers’ claims, or to obtain additional certifications against NSF and non-NSF protocols. Additional services include safety audits for the food and water industries; management systems registrations delivered through NSF International Strategic Registrations; organic certification provided by Quality Assurance International; and education through the NSF Center for Public Health Education.

For more information on eco-efficiency analysis or the new NSF protocol, contact Patrick Davison, NSF senior project manager, phone (734) 913-5719, e-mail davison@nsf.org, or visit www.nsf.org/business/eco_efficiency/index.asp.


About BASF

BASF Corp., Florham Park, NJ, is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has more than 15,000 employees in North America and had sales of approximately $17.5 billion in 2008. For more information about BASF’s North American operations, visit www.basf.com/usa.

For more information on BASF’s verifications, contact Edward Madzy at (973) 245-6689 or e-mail edward.madzy@basf.com.


SIDEBAR: Background on the Protocol

NSF provides protocol development for new or innovative products not covered by current standards. This protocol was reviewed and approved by a consortium of leading industry and sustainability experts. It provides a means to validate an eco-efficiency methodology and a means to verify specific study results using a validated eco-efficiency analysis methodology. Eco-efficiency analyses rely upon the concepts outlined in the Life Cycle Assessment standards developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO 14040 through 14043). Eco-efficiency analyses evaluate both environmental and economic issues.

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