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Electrical and electronic equipment subject to calculation and display of the sustainability index

Description of content:

The sustainability index consists of a score out of 10 intended to be displayed at the time of purchase to inform consumers of the longevity of electrical and electronic products. The purpose of this index is to replace the French repairability index and take into account the criteria of product reliability and scalability.

Objective and rationale, including the nature of urgent problems where applicable: Directive (EU) 2018/851 on waste encourages Member States to take appropriate measures to prevent waste generation. In addition, one of the objectives of the European action plan for the circular economy (COM (2020) 98) is to improve the durability and repairability of products. Under Law No. 2020-105 of 10 February 2020 on combating waste and on the circular economy, and following the establishment of a European repairability index for smartphones and tablets, France would like to gradually replace all repairability indices with sustainability indices starting from 1 January 2024. The first product categories affected are smartphones, televisions and household washing machines.

As with the repairability index, the texts concerning the sustainability index provide not for the labelling of product units but for electronic labels displayed by vendors in-store or online.

By taking into account the criteria of reliability and scalability, the sustainability index aims to encourage consumers to make products last by opting for more robust products, caring for them better and repairing them when they break or stop working. Thus, the sustainability index complements the European repairability index in terms of consumer information geared towards extending product life cycles. This is a major objective that seeks to reduce environmental impacts and preserve the planet's resources, since most of the environmental footprint of electrical and electronic products is attributable to their manufacture.

This measure also seeks to encourage manufacturers to integrate sustainability criteria from the outset of product design, thus tending towards products that are more environmentally friendly because they are "eco-designed".

From an environmental standpoint, this measure will allow France to pursue its national objective of reducing the resource consumption linked to French consumption: to reduce resource consumption relative to GDP by 30% compared to 2010, by 2030 (Law No. 2015-992). More durable products will effectively lead to a reduction in resource consumption (reduction in the need for new products), a reduction in the quantity of waste electrical and electronic products and a lower environmental impact (such as greenhouse gas emissions) associated with their manufacture and end of life.

Environmental protection

Law No. 2020-105 of 10 February 2020 on combating waste and on the circular economy (Article 16)

Proposed date of adoption: To be determined

Proposed date of entry into force: 1 January 2024

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