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Polyvinyl Chloride PVC -6

6.3  Eco-profiles & Life Cycle Assessment

On behalf of the European Commission, and as part of a full review of PVC, PE Europe Consulting Group together with the University of Stuttgart undertook a Life Cycle Assessment of PVC and of Principal Competing Materials. The report, published June 2004, showed PVC products to be comparable to alternatives in their environmental impact. The report can be downloaded from the Europa website.

Eco-profiles provide environmental analysis for a product from 'cradle-to-gate' (as opposed to the 'cradle-to-grave' approach of Life Cycle Assessment). Eco-profiles of PVC were updated in 2006 and can be downloaded from the PlasticsEurope Eco-profiles webpages.

6.4  Total Cost of Ownership Study

In 2011, the European Council of Vinyl Manufacturers (ECVM) commissioned an independent company to undertake a study on the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of PVC products. A Total Cost of Ownership study takes into account all costs associated with a product over its entire life cycle.

The study focussed on three particular applications; windows, flooring and outdoor pipes, utilising data from Germany and Italy (judged to be a fair representation of conditions in north and south European countries).

The study concluds that not only does PVC provide decisive cost advantages due to its low initial purchase price but also in its low cost of ownership throughout the life of the product.



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