What is EU's Digital Product Passport(DPP)?

The EU Digital Product Passport (DPP) is a proposed initiative by the European Commission to create a standardized digital identification document for consumer products. The European Commission's proposal for integrating an EU Digital Product Passport (DPP) in the Eco-Design for Sustainable Products Regulation highlighted the DPP. The proposal pointed out the DPPs' potential advantages in achieving the European Green Deal's objectives as well as their potential to accelerate the adoption of circularity as the standard in Europe.

What are the DPP's objectives?

• The goal of DDP is to provide consumers with easy access to information about the products they are buying, including details on the product's environmental impact, safety, and origin.
• The DPP's aim is to offer consumers more transparency about the products they purchase, to encourage companies to improve their products' environmental and social sustainability and to support the circular economy by promoting the reuse and recycling of products.
• The passports are designed with the aim of tracking, processing, and distributing data in order to:

1. Improve the entire environmental sustainability of products sold in Europe.
2. Making those products more durable, repairable, recyclable, and cleaner in terms of the materials they use.

DPP in the Sustainability Process

A distinctive digital product passport European Commission that enables products to be identified, tagged, and connected to data applicable to their circularity and sustainability will be a requirement of the DPP project for numerous products. It would enable the electronic sharing of data on the environmental effects of the various supply chain stages throughout the lifespan of a product, as well as the ability to track the origin of components and raw materials used in all types of consumer goods.

This will assist both consumers in choosing more environmentally friendly options and businesses in using new business opportunities that enhance the environmental attributes of products and promote an economy that is more circular.

Who inaugurated the Digital Product Passport blueprint?

Digimarc and IOTA worked together on an initiative to establish a Digital Product Passport blueprint in order to satisfy a few of the EU initiative requirements, such as the usage of open standards, accessibility, and decentralised architectures. The Digital Product Passport blueprint was evaluated by a pilot project to provide electric vehicle batteries with DPP.

What are the declarations and demands regarding DPP?

At the end of March 2022, the European Commission declared that it intended to mandate digital product passports as early as 2024, at the very minimum for all product categories covered by the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation.

In addition, delegated acts granted by the EU outline the demands regarding the Digital Product Passport for particular product categories, such as starting with batteries for electric vehicles, building materials, textiles, packaging, food, and consumer electronics.

What are the DPP Standards?

Although the precise list of goods and requirements has not yet been determined, the regulation already lays out the fundamental standards that DPP must adhere to. This comprises:

• End-to-end communication and information transmission using open standards and completely compatible format types.
• Specific and unique product identifiers will be kept in a product passport registry at the EU level to allow public agencies in Europe to enforce environmental product regulations.
• The system ought to be simple to use. On the basis of their respective access rights outlined in the relevant delegated act, economic operators, consumers, and other related parties shall have liberated accessibility to the product passport. In accordance with the powers of access outlined in delegated acts, the rights to introduce, edit, or update information in product passports shall be controlled.
• The DPP should be built on a decentralized data system established and managed by the economic operators who handle product data throughout its lifecycle. The DPP must be made accessible by the brands presenting the product on the market, either directly or by appointing another data operator to act on behalf of them. The DPP must be updated by each separate operator along the lifespan who performs a new activity on the product (such as distributing, repairing, recycling, reusing, or destroying the product).
• The operation and design of passports must guarantee a high level of confidentiality and safety. Data integrity, reliability, and authentication must be guaranteed.

What are the Pros of DPP?

There are several potential advantages to the EU Digital Product Passport (DPP), including:

1. Increased transparency: The DPP would make it easier for consumers to access information about the products they are purchasing, including details on their environmental impact, safety, and origin. This increased transparency can help consumers make more informed purchasing decisions and promote greater corporate responsibility.
2. Improved sustainability: By providing information on a product's environmental impact, energy efficiency, and supply chain information, the DPP can encourage companies to improve the sustainability of their products and supply chains. This can lead to reduced carbon emissions, waste, and resource depletion.
3. Facilitation of cross-border trade: The DPP can simplify the process of exporting and importing products across the EU by providing standardized documentation for products. This can reduce administrative burdens and increase efficiency.
4. Promoting a circular economy: By providing information on a product's end-of-life disposal options and promoting the reuse and recycling of products, the DPP can support the transition to a circular economy.
5. Enhancing product safety: The DPP can help ensure that products meet safety and compliance standards, which can reduce the risk of harm to consumers and improve product quality.

Overall, the digital product passport solution has the potential to benefit consumers, companies, and the environment by increasing transparency, promoting sustainability, facilitating trade, promoting the circular economy, and enhancing product safety.

The DPP would be a digital document that accompanies the physical product and includes information such as its digital identity, its environmental performance, its energy efficiency, its safety and compliance information, and its supply chain information. The DPP is still in the proposal stage, and its implementation is not yet certain. The European Commission is currently soliciting feedback on the proposal, and if implemented, it would be mandatory for all consumer products sold in the EU.

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