Forrester Study: How To Transform Product Sustainability Into Performance Initiatives

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Barco create multiple LCAs and PEFs on the fly

ComplianceConsumer goods and electronicsProduct designSustainability

“Working with Makersite, we’ve tackled our data challenges head-on at Barco, stepping into a new phase of data-focused sustainability and ecodesign. We’re linking our products with thorough supply chain data, and setting up automated LCAs and PEFs. It’s a game-changer in how we meet rules and share our environmental progress.”

Madeleine-Vandenabeele

Madeleine Vandenabeele

Environmental Sustainability Engineer

What you’ll learn

  • Barco faced challenges in efficiently reporting SKU-level environmental data due to data being siloed and scattered across the supply chain, resulting in slow and costly manual efforts
  • Makersite provided Barco with automated Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) and Product Environmental Footprints (PEFs) at the SKU level, allowing them to accurately offset their emissions, comply with EU taxonomy reporting requirements, and implement more targeted eco-design principles across their product portfolio
  • Barco was able to consolidate and enrich their data, perform comprehensive environmental reporting, and make data-driven decisions to minimize their environmental impact

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The company:

Barco is a global technology company that specializes in creating visualization and collaboration solutions for a variety of industries, including entertainment, healthcare, education, and enterprise. The company was founded in 1934 and is headquartered in Kortrijk, Belgium. The company has a strong focus on innovation and sustainability, with a commitment to reducing their environmental impact and promoting sustainability across their product line. Barco has operations in over 90 countries and serves customers in more than 150 countries worldwide.

Use Case: Automated Lifecycle Assessments and Regulatory Compliance
Teams using: Barco Labs – Eco Office
Industry: Electronics and consumer goods
Number of employees: 4,000+
Website: www.barco.com

What Madeleine has to say

Data-Driven Sustainability Leadership through Automated LCAs and PEFs at SKU-Level

The challenge of SKU-level Environmental Reporting

Barco, like many companies, faced challenges in communicating their sustainability efforts to external stakeholders and customers. Specifically, they struggled with the need for efficient environmental reporting at SKU level, including LCAs and PEFs. Barco could create PEFs for individual products using traditional LCA tools, but Barco distributes multiple product lines with many SKUs, so creating accurate results at this scale required a data-driven approach.

Overcoming Data Silos and Enriching Data to Demonstrate Commitment to Sustainability

Despite having many data sources already available within their systems, Barco faced the common problem of data being siloed and scattered across the company, making decision-making difficult. This is because assessing the impact of changes on multiple criteria mandated a great manual effort of first bringing the various data sources together.

Accurate Emissions Offsetting and Sustainable Messaging through automated SKU-level LCAs and PEFs

Makersite provided a solution to these challenges. By using Makersite, Barco was able to combine their data in one place and, where gaps appeared, enrich it with Makersite’s external data sources, resulting in accurate and automated LCAs at SKU level. Automating their LCAs allows Barco to accurately offset their emissions and further promote their climate-neutral ambitions, as well as strengthen communication on sustainability with external stakeholders – all based on data. The PEF, introduced by the EU, creates a standardized way to sum up the environmental impacts of a product into a score understandable by anyone, which Barco uses to communicate with its customers; more on that below.

Recently Barco successfully obtained a 3rd party validated carbon neutral label, based on the LCA results generated by the Makersite model. This acts as an excellent validation of the capabilities and accuracy of the tool.

Meeting EU Taxonomy Requirements

The challenge of complying with EU taxonomy

The EU Taxonomy is a classification system designed by the European Union to help companies and investors understand the sustainability of economic activities. The regulation requires a significant amount of effort and resources to align business activities with the criteria for environmentally sustainable economic activities. The regulation sets strict requirements for companies to identify and report on their environmentally sustainable activities and products, and this requires comprehensive data collection, analysis, and reporting, which, again, using traditional methods and experts or consultants, can be slow and cost intensive.

The EU’s system is founded on Technical Screening Criteria (TSC) that specify environmental requirements to meet the EU objectives. These objectives include climate change mitigation and adaptation, protection of healthy ecosystems, sustainable use of water and marine resources, transition to a circular economy, and pollution prevention and control. Reporting against the Taxonomy is mandatory for financial market participants, large companies, and listed SME businesses.

Overcoming the Challenge of Sustainable Activity Classification and Reporting

Assureablity of the data is essential for Taxonomy reporting, this is ensured by employing Barco data sources that are related to environmental compliance / hazardous substances management process. This allows compliance data collection efforts to directly contribute to the accuracy of the LCA reporting and improve 3rd party audit flows.

Easy compliance through automated and customizable reports and supply chain insights

With the ability to report across all criteria at an SKU level, Barco can now respond to growing regulations and penalties on product declarations, including the EU taxonomy. Reporting requirements can be met quickly through automation, and AI-supported tools increase the speed of the process by up to 100 times. By enriching their internal product data with deeper analysis and verifying data, Barco can ensure the accuracy of their sustainability reporting. The ability to generate Product Environmental Footprints (PEFs) and LCAs to ISO grade provides a comprehensive understanding of the environmental impact of products, making it easier for them to comply with regulatory requirements and improve their environmental impact.

“Barco can finally benefit from its extensive IPC FMD data collection and integrate environmental consequences into its decision-making and is able to communicate objectively our progress towards a greener future to our external stakeholders.
The ability to create LCAs and PEFs on the fly through the development process is a game-changer.”

Image of Jan Daem

JAN DAEM

Product Compliance Manager

Driving Sustainability from Product Design to Manufacturing with Eco-Design and Automated LCAs

Applying eco-design on a huge portfolio without manual effort

Barco, committed to reducing their environmental impact, recognizes the importance of incorporating environmental sustainability already in the product design process and dedicated Barco Ecolabel. But they faced challenges due to their large number of products, which made manual data collection, used in traditional eco-design, impractical. They needed a solution to consolidate their product data and perform comprehensive environmental reporting, allowing them to identify opportunities for sustainable design changes and further demonstrate their commitment to sustainability.

Automated LCAs for implementing Eco-design Principles Across Product Portfolio

By leveraging Makersite’s automated Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs), Barco gained insights into the environmental impact of different design choices, enabling them to perform scenario analysis and evaluate the impact of various design changes on their products. The implementation of Makersite’s software allowed Barco to bring together the various elements of their product data in one place, enabling them to identify opportunities for sustainable design changes across their product line and make data-driven decisions to minimize their environmental impact.

Automating their LCAs with Makersite provided Barco with a powerful tool to implement eco-design principles across their product portfolio. Barco is planning to further integrate LCA-based decisions in the early innovation process and circular business models.