Amazon Starting to Offer EPEAT Ratings

The EPEAT registration system for IT products is largely used for enterprise purchasing. We've been trying to give it more visibility in the CE/SOHO worlds, so we were pleased to hear that Amazon is adding EPEAT ratings to its site. Amazon's initial implementation is a start, but could be much stronger.

Promotion of the EPEAT rating feature on the Amazon site is uneven. Amazon's Green Electronics page, for example, focuses consumers on ENERGY STAR®, a component of EPEAT, but does not mention the EPEAT program itself. This is a critical oversight, because that page is a common point of entry for sustainability-conscious shoppers. (You can visit Amazon's Green Electronics page by clicking on the Amazon banner at the bottom of this page.)

It is also unclear how fully Amazon has integrated the EPEAT database into is product descriptions. We checked some random examples at Amazon USA. The EPEAT database implies the Compaq Presario CQ61-410 is a model in an EPEAT-rated product line, but Amazon appears to makes no mention of this on its product page. The Amazon page for the Dell Vostro 1720 identifies it as an EPEAT product, does not mention that it is rated Bronze, not the greener Silver or Gold. Nor is it clear if Amazon is taking note of EPEAT exceptions when it lists EPEAT ratings.

Interestingly, EPEAT detail on the Amazon listing appears to vary by country. Some use the EPEAT logo, some have a text reference. Some do note the EPEAT Bronze/Siler/Gold level. See information about specific countries in the comments below.

The online EPEAT database is not particularly oriented toward CE/SOHO users and retailers like Amazon can make EPEAT ratings more accessible to those buyers. I look forward to an improved implementation.

When you buy EPEAT, be sure to go for the Gold!

Audit Amazon's EPEAT Inplementation in Your Country

Amazon's EPEAT implementation varies by country. Tell us about it in your country and/or country in which you are interested. Here's how to do it.

1. Read the above post and click through to its examples to become familiar with the issues.

2. Go to the online EPEAT database, entry your country name, and click on the total for notebooks.

3. Select some popular models and look them up on your country's Amazon site.

4. Report your findings in a comment to this post. Send a tweet about your comment, I'll do the same.

Example of a comment you can post:

Amazon France lists the EPEAT rating under the "Détails techniques" section with a "Normes environnementales" bullet. The rating includes Bronze/Silver/Gold level, but not the EPEAT logo. Example at
http://www.amazon.fr/Fujitsu-Lifebook-Notebook-Webcam-Twinload/dp/B0026W...

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