Carbon and Water footprint
With the terms Carbon footprint and Water footprint we define the potential impact of a product, assessed during the entire life-cycle, in terms of greenhouse gasses emissions and of water resources consumption and degradation .
Life Cycle Assessment
All the daily-use products generate environmental impacts on their life-cycle: during the extraction and processing of raw material, the production, the transport, and in most cases even during the use and the end-of-life tratment. e nella maggior parte dei casi anche durante l’utilizzo e il trattamento a fine vita. The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is the methodology, now internationally established, for the quantification of environmental impacts of products during all their life. The method is standardized by the regulations ISO 14040 and ISO 14044. Carbon and water footprint are now getting established as the two most important reference parameters for the assessment of the environmental impacts through LCA analysis.
The set of greenhouse gasses emissions (CO2, CH4, Nitrous oxide N2O, hydrofluorocarbons HFCs, Perfluorocarbons PFCs and sulphur exafluoride SF) of the Life Cycle, attributable to an organization or a product are attributable to an organization or a product are called Carbon Footprint (CF).The CF is an indicator expressed in kg of Global Warming Potential in a defined period, normally 100 years (ie. Global Warming Potential – GWP 100), and it is expressed in kg of CO2 equivalents: this unit of measurement permits to assess the impact that these emissions have on the climate change.
The set of impacts on the water resources generated by a product, or an organization, during the life cycle is called instead Water Footprint (WF). The WF is an indicator of the consuption of fresh water including both the direct and indirect use of water by the production company. The water footprint of a single, a community or a company is defined as the total volume of fresh water used for producing goods or services, measured in terms of volume of water consumed (evaporated or incorporated in a product) and polluted for a time unit.
Product Carbon and Water Footprint are quickly spreading on the agrifood sector as instruments of knowledge and improvement, but also of comunication and marketing. This happens mostly in the wine sector. From this consideration comes the idea of introducing a guideline that let the wine companies of comprehending the contents and the field of applications of the product Carbon and Water Footprint and the assessment and certification methods.
- reduction of environmental impact of the production processes
- increase of efficiency in the production processes, in terms of energy saving, water resources and technical inputs used.
- conquering new market shares, attracting clients and the most sensitive to wine environmental quality consumers clients.
- give eminence to the market and to the consumers on which are the most virtuous products and processes on an environmental basis to reach the objective of mitigating as much as possible climate change.