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Our Approach

Our approach is built on decency, transparency and honesty – both internally and externally. We wish to explain how we choose our path and work with sustainability.

Målbar wants to make sustainability measurable. Though, sustainability is a very broad term, and it is defined in many ways. We subscribe to the definition of the Brundtland report from 1987 stating that sustainability means “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.

What does this mean? To many, it means to do good. It means to act responsibly towards people and the planet. To make choices that do not affect people, society, animals, or nature in negative ways.

To obtain this is however a challenge. Because our society, our supply- and value chains, our legislation, and globalization make operations very complex. As a company, it can be difficult to oversee and control how all different aspects of one’s operations affect and are affected by the numerous surrounding circumstances.

It is our mission to help companies achieve a solid, data-based foundation from which they can actively and efficiently reduce their climate impact.

In our perspective, climate change is the biggest and most pressing issue. And it is a global issue that concerns all citizens of the world. Climate change is also the heaviest weighted of all the 16 environmental impact categories defined by PEF. This is why our approach is to measure and analyze the climate impact of products.

Definition of Sustainability – Brundtland

Sustainability has become a much used word. We subscribe to the original definition:

Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Brundtland, 1987

We are on a mission – we start with climate change

Climate change

Sustainability is a large word, that covers multiple aspects of environmental and social implications. At Målbar, we have decided to start focusing on the climate change measured in CO2eq, as we see this as the main driver for several of the environmental challenges, we all face.

We are very well aware of all the other aspects and look forward to bringing measurable data into these discussions too in the future.

For now, we primarily work within the furniture, interior, and design industry, but we are continuously looking into and expanding our operations into other industries within the categories of household goods and appliances as defined by the EU.

We follow the development in the areas of sustainability and environmental legislation, scientific findings and updates of EU’s life cycle analysis method called PEF (Product Environmental Footprint).

We are on a mission – we start with climate change!

Consumption Footprint in the EU

Division of an average European citizen’s annual consumption footprint on climate change in EU.

A 2023 report from the EU called Consumption Footprint and Domestic Footprint: Assessing the environmental impacts of EU consumption and production” describes the newest results on the division of climate emissions from different consumption categories within the EU.

All results are calculated based on life cycle assessments (LCA) of a range of representative products in each area of consumption. LCA makes it possible to measure supply chains and assess which factors put the most pressure on the environment and the associated environmental impacts.

All 16 environmental impact categories have been assessed and the results are summed up to a single score. The overall EU Consumption Footprint has increased by 4% from 2010 to 2021 (as a single score). Food consumption appears as the main driver of impacts, followed by housing (especially for space heating) and mobility (especially due to the use of private cars).

Our area of business

The figure shown to the left presents a segment of the results. It shows the annual impact per capita from the consumption areas on the impact category of climate change measured in tons of CO2-equivalents. The five areas of consumption are:

  • Food (including beverages, confectionary products, etc.)
  • Mobility (both road-, rail-, and air transport)
  • Housing (both multifamily house and single-family house)
  • Household goods (including furniture, clothing, personal care products, toys, etc.)
  • Appliances (including lighting, electronics, cleaning and cooking appliances, washing and dishwashing machines, etc.)

Our business falls within the Household Goods and Appliances categories. Furniture constitutes 36% of the mass of household goods consumed by an average EU citizen in 2021. It takes a share of 28,6% of the impact of climate change. This corresponds to 300 kilos of CO2eq emissions from furniture per person per year.

In the appliances category, lighting stands for 69% of the total pieces of appliances. However, lighting only constitutes 20 kilos of CO2eq or 8% of the total 250 kilos of CO2eq that the average European citizen emits through appliances per year.

Expanding our operations

Since climate change is by far the heaviest weighted environmental impact category, we in our screening tool currently focus on measuring climate emissions. However, we have started the comprehensive work of implementing the other 15 impact categories into our calculations.

This is also very important because there are several other ways in which the production of goods and services affect the environment negatively.
For example, lighting products have a fairly large impact on the resource use of metals and minerals, because these products contain rare metals.

Furniture also contributes significantly to particulate matter emissions, due to the use of coal to make fire retardants used in sofas.

Målbar will not only expand our competencies to include measuring the impact on all 16 environmental categories. We will also expand into other businesses.
The more we develop our screening tool and our consultancy competencies, the more industries and companies can benefit from it.

Curious to learn more about how Målbar might support your green transition? Feel free to contact us on info@maalbar.dk.

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