Frequently Asked Questions
Public Disclosure and Verification
The CFP Survey evaluates overall corporate chemical management performance by considering four elements: 1) management strategy, 2) chemical inventory, 3) footprint measurement, and 4) public disclosure and verification.
For the 2017 reporting period, the CFP asks companies to measure CoHCs contained in the products they sell.
In future years the scope of chemical footprint measurement will expand to include manufacturing operations, supply chain, and packaging.
The CFP defines chemical footprint as the total mass of chemicals of high concern (CoHCs) in products sold by a company, used in its manufacturing operations and by its suppliers, and contained in packaging. For the 2017 reporting period, the CFP asks companies to measure CoHCs contained in the products they sell.
Chemical footprinting is the process of assessing progress toward the use of safer chemicals and away from chemicals of high concern to human health or the environment. A chemical footprint can be used as a benchmark to document the actions an organization takes to advance the use of safer chemicals in its products and manufacturing operations.
Signatories are investors, large-scale purchasers, retailers or NGOs that agree to:
- Encourage companies in their sphere of influence to participate in the Chemical Footprint Project.
- Be listed on the Chemical Footprint Project website.
- Provide feedback on how to improve implementation of the Chemical Footprint Project.
A Responder is a brand, manufacturer, or retailer that completes the Chemical Footprint Project Survey.
The Survey allocates a total of 100 points across 20 questions. Question-specific scores are added to give a company a total score. The response data from participants will be anonymized, collated, and analyzed in the CFP Annual Report.
Responders can choose whether to publicly share 1.) their participation in the CFP, 2.) their Survey responses (not including documentation), and 3.) their scores. Although third-party verification is not a required, additional points are awarded if responses are independently validated.
As a primary goal of the CFP is to recognize corporate leadership, the CFP will publically profile top performers in its annual report. The results will provide valuable data to investors, retailers and other organizations seeking to identify companies that use best practices in chemicals management. Participants can share their results with their customers and investors who wish to source products from companies that are leaders in using safer chemicals.
Any brand or manufacturer can use the Survey to benchmark its chemicals management program, understand its progress over time and its position relative to other firms. It is designed as a tool to measure continuous improvement in chemicals management.
- Creates a common standard for companies to report their chemical footprints
- Strengthens engagement with brands & suppliers in their chemicals management programs
- Identifies leaders in substituting chemicals of high concern with safer alternatives
There is no cost for being a Signatory in the Chemical Footprint Project.
- Reduces chemical risks of regulation, reputation, & redesign
- Identifies opportunities for improvement including engaging senior management & increasing transparency
- Measures progress in improving chemicals management
There is no cost to be a Responder to the Chemical Footprint Project.
Companies completing the Survey receive scores from 0 to 100 based on responses and supporting documentation. A company can decide whether to make its participation public, as well as its responses to the Survey questions and its score. Participation, responses, and scores of companies that agreed to be public are available here .
Responses of all participating companies are evaluated and reported anonymously in an Annual Report.
Although third party verification is not a requirement for participation, companies receive additional points if responses are independently validated.
The CFP defines a Chemical of High Concern (CoHC) as a chemical that meets any of the following criteria: 1) carcinogenic, mutagenic, or toxic to reproduction (CMR); 2) persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic substance (PBT); 3) any other chemical for which there is scientific evidence of probable serious effects to human health or the environment that give rise to an equivalent level of concern (for example, an endocrine disruptor or neurotoxicant); or 4) a chemical whose breakdown products result in a CoHC that meets any of the above criteria.
Using this definition, the Chemical Footprint Project compiled its 2016 CoHC List from 14 lists of hazardous chemicals developed by governments and other authoritative bodies. The CFP 2016 CoHC List includes any chemical or chemical group that meets any combination of the CFP criteria for a CoHC on any of the 14 lists. Substances on these lists that could not plausibly be an intentionally added ingredient of a product were excluded from the CFP 2016 CoHC List (e.g., viruses, alcoholic beverages). The source lists and links to their websites can be found in Appendix D of the Guidance Document.
While each source list is dynamic, to simplify reporting the CFP 2016 CoHC List is static. It was compiled using July 1, 2016, versions of the source lists.
The CFP 2016 CoHC list aligns with the approach used by GreenScreen® for Safer Chemicals to identify CoHCs, known as “List Translator-1” chemicals (LT-1’s) with two exceptions. First, CFP uses the European Union’s Candidate List of Substances of Very High Concern to identify CoHCs, while GreenScreen uses the European Union’s list of Substances of Very High Concern requiring authorization to identify LT-1 chemicals. Second, CFP does not include EU-Reach Annex XVII CMRs.
The Chemical Footprint Project gives companies across all industries tools to evaluate their progress in reducing Chemicals of High Concern and proactively identify opportunities for further action,
- Joyce Taylor
CFP greatly simplifies the complex issue of chemicals management. We now have a tool that is available for plugging into purchasing decisions.
- Monica Nakielski
Hazardous chemicals “present reputational, regulatory, and reformulation risks across a broad range of industry sectors. Investors need to understand how companies are meaningfully managing these risks.
- Susan Baker
CFP is a market differentiator and provides a competitive advantage for business leaders. This new tool will add a level of transparency and help companies mitigate reputational and regulatory risks and exploit opportunities afforded by moving to safer chemicals.
- Roger McFadden
The Investor Environmental Health Network welcomes the launch of the Chemical Footprint Project. For too long chemicals and health have been missing pieces in Environmental Social Governance (ESG) assessments. Now we have a tool that investors can use to fill in this critical information.
- Richard Liroff
Participating in the Chemical Footprint Project pilot led us to develop a formal chemical policy that will be included on our website. Our chemicals policy and its successful implementation is the very heart of our company philosophy.