Protecting the environment

Trading Standards has an important role to play in the protection of the environment and the climate change agenda.

Local authorities have been set priorities by the Department of Communities and Local Government on emissions and waste, with six National Indicators from C02 reduction to household waste.

To meet carbon reduction and other eco-targets before 2020 we need enhanced monitoring of all trading activity.

Recent work includes an analysis of the Government's Green Deal, a system whereby consumers can access credit for 'green' works to their property, might cause consumer detriment and feedback concerns and amendments to the Government. 

How can trading standards services contribute to the agenda? 

The Trading Standards remit is ever-widening. The responsibility for measuring and weighing everything from the pint in your hand to the fuel in your car is expanding as Trading Standards continues to bring its skills to new regulations and products.

Trading Standards contributes to the environmental agenda in a number of ways.

  • Packaging legislation is used to minimise the creation of packaging waste material and to promote energy recovery, re-use and recycling of materials, and to stop the use of harmful chemicals. The legislative framework is used to help business minimise the quantities of packaging used. Trading Standards works alongside retailers to ensure products have energy labelling so that the power consumption of one make and model can be compared with that of another. This enables the consumer to make more informed decisions based on minimising damage to the environment.
  • Trading Standards monitors claims about the environmental credentials of a product or service. Terms such as ‘environmentally friendly’ and ‘carbon neutral’ can often give business a commercial advantage but are often too vague for consumers to make comparisons with other products.
  • Trading Standards can issue fixed penalty notices for non-compliance with the obligation for all homes being built or sold to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). Display Energy Certificates (DEC) are required for larger public buildings, enabling everyone to see how energy efficient public buildings are. Trading Standards is responsible for ensuring that the DEC is displayed at all times in a prominent place clearly visible to the public.

Industry Code of Practice - Sky Lanterns