What standards is the Scheme based?

The Scheme operates in accordance with several international standards and guidelines:

  • ISO 14025:2006 - the international guidelines for environmental labelling and declaration programmes;
  • ISO 14044:2006 - provides the framework for evaluating the environmental impact of a product from a life cycle perspective;
  • ISO/TS 14067:2013 - sets the principles and requirements for greenhouse gas quantification and reporting at the product level;
  • ISO 14064-1:2006 - guidelines for GHG validation and verification (the operation boundary under the Scheme is extended to raw material acquisition and third-party transportation);
  • Other guidelines/tools provided by the relevant governing industry bodies or well-recognised GHG accounting and reporting organisations;
  • For more about normative references, click here.

What is life cycle assessment (LCA) and why does the Scheme adopt a LCA methodology?

Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a technique for assessing the environmental aspects and potential impacts associated with a product over its life cycle from raw material acquisition to final disposal and recycling.

By using such life cycle analysis of the carbon footprint for each stage of a product, businesses can effectively target their carbon reduction efforts since they understand the significant sources of GHG emissions. Simultaneously, clients of construction products can be aware of how much carbon is embodied in the products they purchase, and reduce the carbon footprint of their construction projects by choosing and purchasing low carbon products.

What is the system boundary of life cycle stages set in this Scheme?

The Scheme covers the key stages of a construction product’s life cycle. The system boundary starts from raw material acquisition (“cradle”), to product distribution , till the construction product reaches the boarder of Hong Kong (“site”). The associated direct and indirect GHG emissions from the product’s “cradle to site” system boundary should be accounted for in the CFP quantification and reporting.

Do CIC and (or) ZCB assess and verify the CFP?

No. Neither CIC nor ZCB directly estimate or verify the carbon footprint of the applied product. The applicant should engage a Certified Carbon Auditor (CCA) for CFP quantification and reporting, and an independent Validation and Verification Body (VVB) for validation and verification of GHG assertions. The CIC is the owner of the Scheme and provides the Assessment Guides and Quantification Tools, as reference sources for CCA and VVB. ZCB is the administrative body for processing the application assessment of the CFP report and verification report and issue of the certificates.

Is it compulsory to have a CIC Carbon Label to sell my products in Hong Kong?

No, the CIC Carbon Labelling Scheme for Construction Products is a voluntary scheme. However, the Scheme helps the manufacturers and suppliers upon entry to the green material market. It also aims to provide an industry wide standard and tool to facilitate the assessment of the carbon footprint of a product. CIC is collaborating with Hong Kong Green Building Council (HKGCB) to link the Carbon Labelling Scheme with the Hong Kong Green Building Assessment Scheme (BEAM Plus), as well as rallying the Hong Kong government's involvement in formulating incentives to promote the use of labelled materials.

How can I use the CIC Carbon Label after the certificate is issued?

For appropriate use of the label, an agreement shall be signed between the Applicant and ZCB upon certification. Upon signing the agreement and with payment of a licence fee, the carbon label with product details may appear in consumer information by print, online or other accessible media.