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Manufacturer to label products with carbon footprint

IT structured cabling manufacturer, Brand-Rex, has become the first company in the IT infrastructure sector to introduce Carbon Footprint marking onto its cable products.

Brand-Rex CEO Paul Lines

Brand-Rex CEO Paul Lines (pictured) commented: “We announced in June this year that we were the first cabling company to make our operations globally carbon neutral and the carbon footprint marking of our high volume products was the logical next step. Knowing the exact CO2 equivalent of our products will help our customers manage their own environmental stewardship.”

Environmental consultants Carbon Clear have helped Brand-Rex with their global carbon reduction programmes. Consultant Andy Lowe stated: “To be able to display the Carbon Footprint stamp on products, a company must have performed a lifecycle assessment in order to measure or compute all of the CO2 equivalents from the point at which the raw materials were extracted from the ground, including all shipping and all conversion and manufacturing processes, right through to the point at which they are delivered to the customer. In the case of Brand-Rex, this means being delivered to the customer’s data centre, building site or distributor’s warehouse.”

All of this was done in line with the internationally agreed standards ISO14044 and PAS2050:2008.

Carbon reduction is an established part of Brand-Rex’s decade long environmental strategy and the PAS2050 assessment was carried out initially for the two highest volume products; Cat5e and Cat6 cables. This confirmed that from 2009 to 2010, Brand-Rex had cut the Carbon Equivalent of its GigaPlus Cat5e cable by 6.17% to 45.22kg CO2e per 305 metre box, with an even larger reduction of 9.64% on its larger Cat6Plus Cat6 cables; a total of 1478 tonnes CO2e across these two products.

Confirming the carbon footprint labelling as a world first, Carbon Clear’s Andy Lowe said: “We were sure that Brand-Rex would be the first structured cabling manufacturer to start carbon footprint labelling on its products, but we were surprised to discover they were also the first company in the IT infrastructure manufacturing sector. Carbon Footprint labelling is going to become extremely important and Brand-Rex has shown their industry a significant example.”

Brand-Rex operates a policy of total transparency on its green credentials and all of the calculations and data relating to this and other claims can be accessed on their website.

It’s important to remember that carbon reduction is not all about one material, as it also relates to all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Indeed, the term ‘carbon’ in this context refers to a range of GHGs including carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydroflurocarbons (HFCs), perflurocarbons (PFCs), sulphur hexafluoride (SF6) and a few lesser ones.

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