Product stewardship

IBM's Product Stewardship program was established in 1991 to bring additional focus to the corporate environmental affairs policy objectives on product environmental design and performance. Throughout the 1990s and continuing through today, IBM has introduced many industry-leading practices in design for the environment, product environmental metrics and product recycling. Today, the Product Stewardship program is incorporated into IBM's worldwide Environmental Management System (EMS) which is certified to the ISO 14001 EMS standard. IBM's proactive initiatives and its vision in incorporating hardware development and product design processes into a globally certified ISO 14001 EMS attest to its legacy of environmental leadership. For more information, see IBM product design and ISO 14001.

The Product Stewardship program provides IBM's Business Organizations with direction and goals, infrastructure, tools and expertise to apply environmental life cycle considerations to IBM's products, from product concept through product end-of-life management. The objectives of IBM's Product Stewardship program include:

These objectives are implemented through internal standards, product specifications, and other requirements in IBM's Offering Management process. Product environmental attributes such as energy efficiency, materials content, chemical emissions testing, design for recycling, end-of-life management plans, and packaging data must be documented and reviewed in IBM's Product Environmental Profile tool at various check points during the development process. Compliance management tools like the Product Content Declaration for IBM's suppliers support the assessments required for a complete Product Environmental Profile prior to product release.

Environmental design requirements are communicated and verified with suppliers through the following tools:

Program metrics supporting IBM's Product Stewardship goals and results are reported annually in IBM's Environmental reporting. The information is also available on our Voluntary performance goals and results webpage.