Ökobilanzen - umweltorientierte Informations- und Bewertungsinstrumente : Stand der Diskussion
In dealing with eco-balances - according to their objectives - it must be distinguished between life-cycle-assessment and internal company eco-balances. For the public or for the preparation of decisions in the business community eco-balances represent environmentally orientated instruments of information and evaluation to the public. In the public/public services, the comparison of products is given priority. Therefore, it is necessary to know about material and energy accounts including
... nts including environmental effects during the complete life-cycle of the product - starting off with the recovery of raw materials followed by production, use and disposal of the products. Additionally conventions and regulations concerning listing, aggregation and evaluation of this environmental information are obligatory to make the comparison plausible, clear and comprehensible. Such generally accepted eco-balances lack important methological conventions, especially regarding the separation of system boundaries, obtaining of data, aggregation and evaluation. In the business community, production-cycle and company policy are much more important than the product. It is less the comparison of products which is of primary interest but much more the finding of ecological weak points and the following preparation of environmental internal company decisions. Therefore the internal company eco-balance will be integrated into an eco-controlling or environmental auditing system. For this purpose simple regulations and conventions which should be suitable even to mediumsized and smaller companies are sufficient for the methodical production-cycle. Further developments will be essentially influenced by the eco-audit of the European Community.