Water is an essential resource for life, which sometimes becomes critical for the sustainability of populations, municipalities, regions, countries and companies. Nowadays it is necessary to know the indicators and the tools that allow to evaluate the sustainability of water management, in companies, regions, nations and the world. The Environmental Footprint of the European Union. The Environmental Footprint of the European Union was born with the publication in the DOCE, on 05/05/2013, of the RECOMMENDATION OF THE COMMISSION, of April 9, 2013, on the use of common methods to measure and communicate the environmental behavior of the products and organizations throughout their life cycle.
The environmental footprint of products (HAP) and organizations (HAO) is a multicriteria measure of the environmental behavior of a good or service, or of an organization that provides goods or services, throughout its life cycle.
In both cases, the objective is to reduce the environmental impact throughout the entire supply chain. It is applicable to companies, public administration entities, non-profit organizations and other organizations.
In the Environmental Footprint, 14 categories of environmental impact are studied: climate change; depletion of the ozone layer; ecotoxicity for freshwater ecosystems; human toxicity (carcinogenic effects); human toxicity (non-carcinogenic effects); particles / inorganic substances with respiratory effects; ionizing radiation, effects on human health; photochemical formation of ozone; acidification; terrestrial eutrophication; aquatic eutrophication; depletion of resources, water, Ecoscarcity model; depletion of mineral and fossil resources; transformation of the earth.
Between 2014 and 2016, the Category Rules for the Product and Organization Environmental Footprint have been prepared for 25 industrial sectors, which:
– They will become the norms of valid products within the framework of the Environmental Footprint of Product and Organization in the EU.
– They must be used by all industries and the components of the respective sectors, in the European Union and internationally, to measure the behavior of their products, based on the Environmental Footprint of the product. The objective is that between 2016 and 2020 the voluntary use of the Environmental Footprint of Product and Organization be generalized in the European Union. Decision making should be based on the data provided by indicators that measure several environmental aspects, otherwise we would risk increasing other categories of environmental impacts without realizing it, which is why the EU Environmental Footprint is the most complete indicator , since it includes the Carbon Footprint and some ways to express the Water Footprint.