The single-company, product-specific EPD is the most common type of EPD. Its based on a valid PCR and describing the life cycle environmental impact of one (1) or - very similar products - from one single manufacturer.
Single-company EPDs provide data on one product made by one manufacturer, but can encompass several factories. When a manufacturer produces a product in several plants thorughout the world, but all plants use the same processes, they can be covered by a single EPD.
In LEED v4, this is referred to as a "Product-specific Type III EPD".
Project and product-specific EPDs are useful when specific data for an exact product and project (e.g. in public procurement) are requested by the EPD users and e.g. the transportation calculation would somehow differ from the one documented in a verified EPD.
The project specific, single product EPD compulsorily requires a manufacturer to have a single-company,single product EPD that forms the basis for the project specific adapation.
Project specific EPDs can cause some market confusion, because some peer EPD programme operators offer the publication of such non third-party verified LCA-studies via their systems as an ISO14021 Self-declared Environmental Claim, and not as an ISO14025 verified Environmental Declaration. Often these reports claim ISO14025 compliance, but come accompanied with notations regarding the EPDs' internal verification or self-declaration characteristics.
Similar products made by the same manufacture can be included in a Group EPD.
Similar products from a single or several manufacturing sites covered by the same PCR and manufactured by the same company with the same major steps in the core processes may be included in the same EPD if the differences between the declared environmental performance indicators are lower than ±10%.
One set of results shall be declared for one representative product.
The choice of representative product shall be justified in the EPD, using, where applicable, statistical parameters.
A Sector EPD is developed by an industry asscociation and declares the average product of multiple companies in a clearly defined sector and/or geographical area.
Products covered in a Sector EPD shall follow the same PCR and the same functional/ declared unit shall be applied.
Any communication of the results from a sector EPD should contain the information that the results are based on averages obtained from the sector as defined in the EPD.
The communication shall not claim that the sector EPD results are representative for a certain manufacturer or its product. As that, a single EPD cannot represent several products and several manufacturers.
In the context of EN 15804, a Sector EPD is sometimes referred to as an "Average EPD". Elsewhere, they could be referred to as "Industry-wide EPD" or "Generic EPD".
The single-issue EPDs focus on a single environmental impact category.
Publishing a single-issue EPD means that the Secretariat prepares one single-page Climate Declaration based on the EPD. A Climate Declaration is intended to be used as complements to the EPD and will refer to the EPD for information about other environmental impacts. The Climate Declaration is published alongside the original EPD.
The most popular single-issue EPD is the Climate Declaration, which declares only the carbon footprint expressed as the Global Warming Potential (GWP) in Carbon Dioxide (CO2) equivalents of the product. Its aligned with ISO 14067 for the calculation of carbon footprint, while it refers to the actual EPD for more information about other impacts.
To publish a single issue EPD, it is mandatory to have a full EPD.
The pre-certified EPD is an initial step to publishing environmental information of a product during the development of a PCR for a new product category.
A pre-certified EPD may serve as a practical example and thus facilitate the PCR development process in the discussions between the parties involved. The pre-certification also gives an organisation the possibility to, early on, inform the market about the environmental performance of their products.
Pre-certification is not applicable for a product category in the event of an existing PCR (valid or expired) at www.environdec.com.
A machine-readable EPD contains some of the information of an EPD that has been transferred into a machine-readable format. The information is stored in a xml-file format in a separate database hosted by the International EPD® System that can be used for different applications and will open new ways to make use of the communication of the environmental performance of products.
All digitalized data is linked to the EPDs published in the International EPD® System and therefore enables communication of environmental impacts of products in a quantitative, credible, comparable and understandable way based on an established communication format.
Sustainability considerations in the construction sector are of growing interest and even recommended by the European construction product regulation (CPR). LCA at building level is a central instrument for the evaluation of environmentally relevant sustainability aspects. The required material data is given in environmental product declarations (EPD) based on calculation methods according to European or International Standards (e.g. EN 15804, ISO 21930). Meanwhile, there is an increasing demand of data in digital format.
The transformation of EPD-information into the machine-readable format will broaden the opportunities for the application of EPD information in areas, such as public procurement, building assessment tools and other environmental calculation tools.
Following developments in the International Open Data Network for Sustainable Building (InData), the structure and format of the data is aligned with the format discussions in the InData network.
The InData initiative is based on already existing instruments, and standards. It thus uses the so called ILCD+EPD data format. The ILCD data format, developed by the European Commission’s DG JRC, is widely used in the LCA context. Extensions had to be added to integrate EPD specific information (e.g. scenarios, modules, type of data). The chosen format offers a high flexibility, which allows for the adaption of related specific national requirements or changes in the underlying standards (e. g. amendments M350 of EN 15804) in future.