– Criteria overview

Criteria designed for driving sustainable development

The criteria in TCO Certified go beyond industry standards and legislation. The certification is the tool of choice for any organization wanting to build a leadership position in their approach to sustainability and IT products.

Criteria designed to drive continual progress

The comprehensive criteria in TCO Certified are designed to drive social and environmental sustainability throughout the product’s life cycle. To keep challenging the industry, we release a new generation of TCO Certified every three years. This allows us to address the most pressing sustainability challenges and stay current with the latest technology developments.

Science-based and open development process

The criteria in TCO Certified are science-based and are developed in an open process with our international network of stakeholders that includes users, buyers, brands, manufacturers, NGOs, researchers and subject matter experts. TCO Certified is classified as a Type 1 Ecolabel and our processes and verification meet the requirements in ISO 14024. TCO Development is impartial during the verification process and certified products must meet all criteria to qualify for TCO Certified.

A circular approach to IT products

Today, the majority of IT products have a lifespan which is too short. The take, make, use, dispose model leads to an overuse of finite natural resources and an enormous e-waste problem.

In a circular economy, resources are handled in a more responsible way. The goal is to extend product lifetime and recirculate all materials without producing any waste. TCO Certified supports the circular economy by demanding that products are durable, repairable, upgradable and recyclable.

Criteria overview

Manufacturing phase  
Socially responsible manufacturing
● Code of conduct: compliance and corrective actions independently verified
● Responsible mineral sourcing, including conflict minerals and cobalt
● Reduced worker exposure to hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing
● Independently verified management system for anti-corruption and whistleblowing
● Intensified monitoring of progress and corrective actions at high-risk factories
● Criteria cover labor laws, ILO’s core conventions and United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child
Environmentally responsible manufacturing
● Reduced impact from manufacturing: management system, energy consumption
Manufacturing phase  
User health and safety*
● Electrical safety, limited noise levels, electric and magnetic fields
Product performance*
● Ergonomic design, image quality, adjustability
● Product energy efficiency: Energy Star® or equivalent
Product lifetime extension*
● Product durability: drop and temperature resistance
● Battery life and replaceability
● Availability of replacement parts and service manuals
● Secure data removal
● Standardized connectors
Manufacturing phase  
Reduction of hazardous substances
● Reduction or elimination of hazardous substances including heavy metals (beyond RoHS)
● Only flame retardants and plasticizers independently verified as safer are accepted
Material recovery
● Take-back options for discarded products
● All packaging must be recyclable
Sustainability performance indicators*
● Indicators provided on product energy consumption, weight and recycled plastic content help you measure progress toward set sustainability goals

* Criteria are specific to each product category

View the complete criteria

View the complete criteria included in TCO Certified by downloading product-specific criteria documents.

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