EcoLogo, Eco-label and Choosing a Product
EcoLogo Similar in general description to Blue Angel, the Canadian EcoLogo certification can apply to a wide variety of products, with different criteria for each kind of product. Computer-related categories include computer keyboard, computer mouse (currently there are no qualified products in either category), desktop laser printers, remanufactured cartridges and printing paper. As with Blue Angel, the requirements vary with each category. For printers, for example, the issues include energy efficiency, ozone and dust emission, and whether the printer is compatible with recycled paper and remanufactured cartridges.There are a slew of other national eco-labels, including (but not limited to) Dutch, Austrian, French, Czech, Hungarian and Polish versions, as well as the Nordic Swan in Finland, Sweden and Denmark. There's even an EU version called the Eco-label, also known as The Flower Eco-label, because of a logo that's designed to look like a flower. Keeping track of all the different eco-labels is impractical, but the good news is that the various organizations behind these labels are working to develop a common approach. Stay tuned on that one. Finding Products If you're serious about buying green products, consider starting your buying search by picking the certifications you want the products to meet, and then confining your search to products with those certifications. Most of the Web sites mentioned here include lists of products that meet the standard the Web site deals with. To see a list of desktop systems with EPEAT Gold certification, for example, you can go to the home page of the EPEAT Web site, scroll down to the EPEAT Registered Products Search Tool, which is in the form of a table, and click on the intersection of Desktops and Gold. You can then click on each individual item in that list to get more information on it. With a little luck, one or more of those products should meet your needs.