TÜV Rheinland Blog - Insights from Asia and Africa

IT Product Sustainability Certification - TCO Certification

Posted by TUV Rheinland on Aug 16, 2017 4:32:17 PM
TUV Rheinland

I wonder if anyone reading this blog has ever looked at the environmental labels found on home appliances, cars, and the like. I think many people are aware of environmental labels, due to an interest in environmental issues such as Co2 reduction and recycling, but also attempt to reduce their own running costs of home appliances and cars. Some people also factor them into their comparative purchasing of products.


There is an extraordinarily large number of so-called environmental labels, which indicate if a particular product is intended to be environmentally-friendly or energy-efficient. For example, the "Unified Energy Saving Label" affixed to home appliances, the "International Energy Star Label" affixed to personal computers, and the "Fuel Efficiency Standards Car Sticker" affixed cars. Many environmental labels are recognized not only domestically but also globally, and are used by numerous countries.

On this occasion, I will introduce one of these environmental labels, the TCO certification label. The TCO certification label is an environmental label from Sweden intended for IT products. The IT product categories have been limited to 8 categories; displays, notebook PCs, smart phones, tablets, all-in-one PCs, desktop PCs, projectors, and headsets.

The TCO certification label is not a conventional, simple energy-efficient or harmful substances reduction label, but rather an environmental label pertaining to the sustainability risk of the entire lifecycle of the IT product. In concrete terms, this means that in addition to items such as product environmental performance and recycling, efforts at the level specified by CSR items are also required, for instance manufacturer labour environments, environmental management, and handling of conflict minerals issues. Corporations that wish to affix TCO certification labels to their products are required to clearly indicate in writing their corporate conduct standards, which call for a comprehensive company-wide initiative. A corporation that affixes TCO certification labels to its products can market itself as an enterprise that makes proactive CSR efforts.

From the standpoint of consumers who choose products that are affixed with these globally-renowned TCO certification labels, these products have the advantage of being purchased with peace of mind, in the knowledge that great efforts are being made by their manufacturers. The fact is that as the social responsibility of corporations is considered to be increasingly important, the number of public organizations and private corporations that seek TCO certification as one of the purchasing conditions will also increase, especially in Europe. Companies that purchase products with TCO certification labels are working toward the fulfillment of their social responsibility as a company.

Throughout the lifecycle of products, TCO certification is playing a greater role and becoming more significant for both purchasers and manufacturers, as demand for environmental and social responsibility continue to grow on a global scale. TÜV Rheinland Japan is the only TCO certification body in Japan. We offer one-stop provision of testing, evaluation, and auditing required for TCO certification, and also provide appropriate support for acquiring TCO certification of products.

Please feel free to contact us if you are interested in TCO certification

Topics: Product Certification