EPD® FAQ – frequently asked questions

Is EPD® mandatory?

No, it is voluntary, although in certain markets it is effectively commercially viable. Think, for example, of those companies that subcontract to large customers (e.g. large-scale retailers, multinationals, etc.), or those that work with public administrations (e.g. CAM: Minimum Environmental Criteria) or in certain sectors (e.g. construction: Construction Materials Directive) or supply chains (wood/furniture/building: green building protocols such as LEED®, agri-food), etc.


If the EPD® is not mandatory, why is my client asking for it?

Because it wants to be assured that the organisation is aware of and reduces the environmental impacts of its products/processes.


Are environmental regulations different between, for example, Europe and the United States?

If we talk about regulations, yes, EPD® no. This applies worldwide.


What are the main differences between EPD® and other environmental regulations?

EPD® is a product certification, whereas regulations are those established by current legislation.


How does the certification procedure take place?

After the implementation of the LCA system, it undergoes the certification process performed by a Programme Operator certified agency (e.g. Environdec, EPD Italy, etc.)


What are the advantages for consumers?

The benefits also affect the end customer, who chooses materials and products for their home, family, or personal well-being. Consumers today have the opportunity to make conscious choices with a view to environmental sustainability. Thanks to EPD® a consumer can be informed of the environmental performance validated by an accredited third party of the products he or she is purchasing; they can contribute to safeguarding the ecosystem by choosing products and services that have less impact than others on the market. And in the case of real estate or buildings, the choice of materials with certified environmental footprints can increase the standard of quality, and therefore their economic value.


EPD® and LEED® certification

CAP Arreghini’s EPDs® can be used to obtain credits for sustainability protocols that meet LEED requirements and can therefore help earn points based on the value set by this voluntary rating system.


What are the benefits for businesses?

EPD® makes it possible to communicate environmental performance throughout the production chain in a clear, transparent, and objective manner. The advantages are also economic: EPD® allows production processes to be optimised and costs to be reduced within the company by monitoring the improvement in the environmental performance of products or services over time. Last but not least, there is the possibility of enhancing a corporate brand by adopting a policy of transparency toward stakeholders.


In essence, thanks to EPD®, a company is able to:

  • optimise production processes and reduce costs within the company, monitoring the improvement of the environmental performance of products/services
  • clearly and objectively communicate the environmental performance of a product/service throughout the production chain

enhance a corporate brand by adopting a policy of transparency toward stakeholders


LEED® FAQ – frequently asked questions

Is the LEED® certification for buildings mandatory?

No, it is voluntary, although it is widespread throughout the world. In Italy, LEED® construction sites have increased in recent years. Just think of City Life in Milan, the Unipol tower in Bologna, the Km Rosso in Bergamo, the Camp Ederle in Vicenza, and more. One of the reasons why certification is chosen is that it is a tool that actually guarantees the value of the work. For manufacturers of materials in the building and wood-furniture sectors, it is a tool on a commercial level because it enhances the sustainability characteristics of the materials, which are measurable and verifiable. This is particularly relevant in contract supplies at an international level.


If certification is not a mandatory requirement, why does my client require this certification from me?

This is because they want to be ensured that their products compete for the highest number of credits so that they can achieve the required level of building certification.


In which countries is the LEED® certification recognised?

It is an international protocol, applied worldwide, especially in the countries of the dollar area.


Can a product be LEED® certified?

No, a product cannot be LEED® certified, only the building can achieve LEED® certification. Products can, however, contribute and help to meet the requirements defined in the credit standards, for the building to achieve the scores necessary for certification.


How does the LEED® building certification process practically take place?

The client and the building design team register the project for certification, define the target credits, and then work on the planning and implementation to comply with the requirements of the chosen prerequisites and credits. When products for the construction and finishing of the building have to be purchased, certain characteristics related to the requirements of the prerequisites and credits are demanded from suppliers. These characteristics must then be properly documented in accordance with the requirements so that they can be verified by auditors for the LEED® certification of the building. Therefore, a company, which already has the appropriate product characteristics and consistent documentation, will further benefit the team that has to submit the building for certification.


Where can I find products with LEED® “mapping”?

On the company’s website or at the GREENiTOP website (www.greenitop.com), which is a type of “purchasing guide ” for designers, architectural firms, construction companies, etc. that are searching for environmentally efficient products.