Sustainability & Energy
Demand for climate-friendly energy technologies is growing rapidly. Here, mechanical and plant engineering can expand its key position as a supplier and user of sustainable energy systems. However, this will only succeed if energy costs do not develop into a locational disadvantage and technology paths remain explicitly open through forward-looking legislation.

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From our content

From our content
Material Compliance Guide now available

Product-related environmental regulations, many of which are known by the widely used term "Material Compliance (MC)," have been explained by VMDA in a comprehensive guide.

New Ecodesign Regulation and digital product passport

With the new Ecodesign Regulation and the establishment of a digital product passport, the EU Commission has set an important milestone under the Green Deal. The mechanical engineering sector will already be affected by the new requirements in the short term.

Supporting documents for the ZVEI-VDMA Code of Conduct

Here you will find supporting documents to assist you in implementing the contents described in the ZVEI-VDMA Code of Conduct (compliance and sustainability topics) in your company.

EU Parliament adopts position on the EU Packaging Regulation

On November 22, 2023, the European Parliament voted on its position on the Commission's proposal for a Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR)

"Companies need planning security quickly!"

The Energy Services Act is intended to make companies more efficient in their use of energy. To achieve this, companies now need planning certainty quickly in order to implement the numerous regulations!

"EU taxonomy slows down innovation in mechanical engineering!"

Innovative mechanical engineering must be able to classify itself as sustainable in the EU taxonomy. This requires clarity and legal certainty, which has not yet been provided.

Twin transformation: synergies between digitalization and sustainability

Around 50 participants from Austria, Germany, the Netherlands, Finland and Denmark met at ANDRITZ AG in Graz on 28 May to exchange experiences on the opportunities of digitalization for sustainable products in mechanical engineering.

Publication 1st VDMA Benchmark Industry Materiality according to ESRS

The VDMA publishes the first benchmark for industry-wide materiality in accordance with the European Sustainable Reporting Standard (ESRS) of the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD).

"Climate finance unfortunately postponed to Baku"

Unfortunately, no substantial progress was made on climate financing at the Bonn Climate Change Conference. Difficult negotiations now lie ahead at COP29 in Baku.

NETZSCH Campus in Waldkraiburg: New benchmark in terms of climate protection

With its new building in Waldkraiburg, NETZSCH Pumpen & Systeme GmbH is setting new standards in terms of climate protection and sustainability. The global specialist for complex fluid management aims to achieve complete climate neutrality by 2045.

First sign that the alarm signals of the economy are being heard

Federal Economics Minister Habeck wants to suspend the German Supply Chain Act for two years. It would be a first sign that the concerns and alarm signals of the business community are finally being heard.

Reduction of packaging

The use of recyclable or reusable packaging not only makes ecological sense, but also saves direct costs. Reducing packaging sizes offers additional efficiency potential for companies.

Efficient compressed air generation

Losses in the compressed air systems of manufacturing companies often lead to unnecessarily high energy costs. More energy-efficient systems and preventive diagnostic and maintenance measures save money.

Autonomous heating and ventilation

Creating a heating and ventilation concept in conjunction with an autonomous control system can reduce CO2 emissions throughout the company.

Employee leasing of electric cars

Promoting the leasing of electric vehicles for employees not only reduces greenhouse gas emissions caused by commuting to and from work, but even more.

Regional sourcing

Short supply chains, with suppliers in the region of the production site, save greenhouse gas emissions.

Transitional phase of Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism has begun

On 1st October 2023 the transitional phase and first reporting period of the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) began.

Study analysis on the economic damage of climate change

The PIK article published in the magazine "nature" calculates the economic losses of climate change up to the year 2100.

Further training as an energy scout

Training employees to become energy scouts can help to identify hidden efficiency potential in companies and thus reduce costs.

Minimization of heat loss from the building (without insulation)

Heat losses in company buildings contribute to higher energy bills and thus also to a higher greenhouse gas emissions balance for the company.

Reduction of office space - shared desk concept

This measure contributes to the optimization of building efficiency by reducing the building area to be managed.

Replacing conventional building lighting with LEDs

The continuous replacement of existing conventional light sources is a low-threshold measure to improve the energy efficiency of buildings.

Carpooling platform

In a study, the Federal Environment Agency examined the potential and obstacles to carpooling in Germany. It was found that these solutions "are an essential component of environmentally-oriented mobility management.

VDMA training document: Human rights due diligence obligations

Together with member companies, the VDMA has developed training documents from October 2023 to spring 2024 that can be used to raise awareness of human rights risks in your own company and supply chain.

Amendment to the GewAbfV: Your input by 09.05.2024

The Federal Ministry for the Environment has presented a draft bill to amend the German GewAbfV. The draft can now be commented on. We are happy to receive your feedback until 09.05.2024.

Study analysis on future CO2 networks in Europe

The Joint Research Center of the European Commission has compared several possible development scenarios for an emerging CO2 transport network in Europe to identify positive and negative factors.

Amendment to the Climate Protection Act passed in the Bundestag

The Bundestag agrees on amendments to the German Climate Protection Act

Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism reporting obligations from July 2024

As we move into the second half of 2024 companies are having to adjust to the next phase of reporting obgliations, in which primary emissions data from suppliers plays a key role.

"A complete ban of all PFAS substances is inconceivable!"

A complete ban on all PFAS substances would jeopardize the existence of many companies. Achieving the climate targets would also be a long way off.

Direct current supply for production

Traditionally, production halls are supplied with alternating current from the public power grid. However, switching to direct current would have a number of advantages.

Recycling of rejects and process scrap in production

The more material - for example metals or plastics - that is not part of the final product, the higher the total material consumption and the higher the total greenhouse gas emissions.

Recording the energy consumption of the machines

The energy efficiency of your own production equipment, such as machine tools, can be improved by measuring and visualizing electricity consumption.

Use of mobility hubs

Enabling more climate-friendly commuting for employees

Measures to reduce the climate impact of companies

Have you already calculated your company's climate footprint and defined ambitious climate targets? But what specific measures can a company take to achieve these goals?

"Rigid sector targets have failed"

The dispute over the German Climate Protection Act has ended with the right compromise. For good reasons, the focus is now on the overall development of emissions.

Carbon management: paving the way for a climate-neutral future

The focus is on carbon management technologies to effectively reduce and manage CO2 emissions. The new study by the VDMA Competence Center Future Business looks at the role of mechanical engineering and possible development paths.

Carbon Management 2035 - Scenario study volume IX

The ninth future study examines the role of carbon management as the key to achieving climate targets. It outlines opportunities and hurdles for industry and society and presents four future scenarios for 2035 and beyond.

European supply chain law (CS3D) comes in a watered-down form

At the third attempt, the EU Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CS3D) was adopted on 15 March 2024. The last-minute changes are at least a partial success of the VDMA's lobbying efforts.

IEA Electricity Market Report 2024

The IEA's latest report on the development of global electricity markets with a short-term forecast for the next two years on technologies, infrastructure and price developments.

Reporting and retention requirements for PFAS defined in US TSCA

PFAS are now also being scrutinized in the USA. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has defined reporting and retention requirements for PFAS in US TSCA. The VDMA supports its member companies with a fact sheet.

First bidding round for carbon contracts funding program launched

The first bidding round for the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection's Carbon Contracts funding program started on 12 March. Here you will find the key points of the program.

New findings on the timeline in the PFAS restriction procedure

Contrary to what was originally assumed, it will take much longer before a final decision is made on how per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) will be regulated under the European chemicals legislation REACH.

"European Parliament must pull the emergency brake now!"

In its current form, the EU Supply Chain Directive will create further competitive disadvantages for European industry on global markets. The European Parliament must now pull the emergency brake at the last minute.

Report of the Federal Audit Office on the implementation of the energy transition

On March 7, 2020, the German SAI published a report on the implementation of the energy transition in the electricity supply sector. It identified systematic deficiencies that jeopardize the success of the transformation.

European CIRPASS project presents recommendations

The consortium presented its findings and recommendations at an online event in early March and declared the digital product passport to be a key tool for establishing a green and digital transformation in Europe.

EU supply chain law: No majority in the EU Council

There was no majority in the vote on the EU supply chain law (Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive - CS3D) in the EU Committee of Permanent Representatives of the Member States (Coreper) on 28.02.2024.

Sustainable Finance Taxonomy

The European Sustainable Finance Taxonomy Regulation aims to define what environmentally sustainable economic activities are and thus create a standardized classification system within the EU.

Milestone for climate and economic policy

Achieving the climate targets requires openness to technology. The use of carbon management technologies is an important component of this. Mechanical engineering is an important enabler here.

Environmental Business Award.NRW 2024

Do you combine environmental protection with economic success? Show it in the Environmental Business Award.NRW 2024 and submit your application by April 30, 2024!

"EU Supply Chain Directive needs a fresh start"

The EU Supply Chain Directive pursues an important goal, but cannot be implemented in practice. Eight major business organizations therefore reject the current draft and are calling for a legislative proposal that actually works in practice.

Legal requirements

Legal requirements
CSRD: CSR reports become mandatory for all non-SMEs!

The revised CSR Directive significantly expands the user group: in Germany from currently around 500 to 15,000 companies! The reporting standard to be met has also been available since July 2023.

Green Claims Directive: voluntary environmental claims

The proposed regulation of voluntary environmental claims in Business-to-Consumer activities awaits vote in European Parliament.

EU Commission with ambitious circular economy package

"Closing the loop" is the motto of the EU Commission's comprehensive circular economy package. It aims to do much more than just save a little bit of resources and recycle a little bit more.

Sustainable Finance Taxonomy

The European Sustainable Finance Taxonomy Regulation aims to define what environmentally sustainable economic activities are and thus create a standardized classification system within the EU.

Business and human rights: Corporate due diligence enshrined in law

The final form of the Corporate Due Diligence Directive (CS3D) will be negotiated at EU level in 2023. In Germany, the Bundestag has already passed a Supply Chain Due Diligence Act (LkSG) in 2021.

EU Conflict Minerals Regulation

Binding due diligence obligations have applied to importers of conflict minerals such as tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold from risk areas into the EU since the beginning of 2021.

EU Regulation: Deforestation-free supply chains (EUDR)

On June 30, a new EU regulation came into force, which was adopted in response to the urgent challenges of climate change and species protection.

Our expert and focus topics

Our expert and focus topics
PFAS - Indispensable for industrial processes
Industrially indispensable but facing a potential EU ban. Learn more about the reasons and consequences of the impending PFAS ban for machinery and plant engineering on the new VDMA expert topic page.
The Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) is a central element of the EU's "Fit for 55" package. The aim of this package is to reduce CO2 emissions by 55 percent by 2030 compared to 1990 levels. The CBAM obliges companies that import emission-intensive goods into the EU to purchase so-called CBAM emission allowances in order to compensate for the difference between the CO2 price paid in the country of origin and the higher price in the EU.
Blue Competence
Twelve guiding principles summarise the requirements for sustainability in a clear formula. The VDMA's "Blue Competence" initiative presents solutions from the mechanical and plant engineering industry.
Water, the basis of life and a source of energy, dominates 71percent of the earth's surface. Its power and industrial importance are at the centre of our focus topic.
Go For Green Tech!
The mechanical and plant engineering sector is an enabler for climate protection and resource efficiency. The VDMA initiative "Go For Green Tech!" shows successful examples from practice.
Climate-Neutral Production
Companies in the mechanical and plant engineering sector must also set out on the path to climate neutrality. The VDMA's "Climate-neutral production" initiative provides support.
Green Deal
With the "Green Deal", the European Commission has presented a far-reaching program for more climate and environmental protection in the EU in 2019. The central goal is to become climate neutral by 2050, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% compared to 1990 emission levels and to further promote the circular economy in Europe.
Sustainability Management
Whether climate protection targets, suitability for grandchildren or human rights due diligence obligations - sustainability is on everyone's lips and the expectations on companies to act responsibly are constantly increasing.
Circular Economy
The more people live on earth, the greater the demand for resources, the mountains of waste and the emission of climate gases are likely to become. In the future, it will no longer be enough to make raw material extraction and material processing more efficient.
Substance Policy
Substance policy deals with the regulation of substances and the obligations associated with them. In the area of product-related environmental protection, such as the REACH Regulation or the RoHS Directive, substances used in products must not be hazardous.
International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaic (ITRPV)
The International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaic (ITRPV) is developed by the PV industry for the PV industry. Twice a year, data is collected from the contributors and processed anonymously as well as evaluated by the VDMA. Participation is free of charge.
Sustainable Processing and Packaging
With the Sustainable Processing and Packaging initiative, the VDMA wants to make a contribution to objectifying the discussion about packaging. In addition, we would like to highlight the many facets of sustainability, in both processing and packaging technology.
Battery Production
Electromobility and battery production are gaining ground worldwide, and this is just the beginning. To make the right decisions early and be competitive, it is essential to have your finger on the pulse of innovative production solutions.
Hydrogen Economy
The use of hydrogen offers enormous potential towards decarbonizing industries and achieving climate neutrality. Through the use of hydrogen and power-to-X (P2X), new value chains are emerging ranging from renewable energy plants, process engineering and components all the way to applications.

Level 1 Themenwolke


To the point

To the point

Auf den Punkt Zitat Sustainability

“The focus on a decarbonized and at the same time competitive manufacturing industry is an important signal for the mechanical and plant engineering sector, as our industry provides the key technologies to achieve this target.”

Thilo Brodtmann, Executive Director of VDMA

Auf den Punkt Zahl Sustainability



of all biological waste accepted at waste disposal facilities was recycled in 2020. In total, private households in Germany composted around 2.6 million metric tons of biowaste in 2020. From this, biological waste treatment plants produced, among other things, 4.8 million metric tons of specification compost and 746.6 million cubic meters of biogas.

Source: Federal Statistical Office (Destatis)

Auf den Punkt Zusammenfassung Nachhaltigkeit

CSRD: CSR reports mandatory for all non-SMEs in future!
    The sustainability reporting obligation applies to companies that fulfil two of the following three size criteria:
  • Balance sheet total of at least EUR 20 million
  • Net sales of at least EUR 40 million
  • VDMA representsAt least 250 employees



Thu. 10.10.24 Fri. 11.10.24

  • Management

Every four years, the VDMA invites its member companies to the big general assembly – this year under the motto "Unique."

Every four years, the VDMA invites its member companies to the big general assembly – this year under the motto "Unique."

Unsere Leistungen

Unsere Leistungen
FAQ on the subject of substance policy
Our FAQ provides answers to all important questions on the subject of "European substance law"
Climate-neutral production Guide
Our guideline demonstrates how you can produce in a climate-neutral way and implement reporting on the supply chain.
VDMA Database Technical Regulations (DaTeR)
Technical market access conditions, Japan RoHS or Korea REACH: In the VDMA-DaTeR you will find international regulatory guidelines and information from more than 70 countries.
Stay up to date: our newsletters on this topic
Subscribe now: The VDMA Newsletter Technology, Environment and Sustainability and the VDMA Newsletter Forum Climate and Energy provide information on all important innovations in the field of energy and sustainability on a regular basis.
CSR-Management: Software Offer in Cooperation with the VDMA
In cooperation with the sustainability startup Verso, we are offering you a software-based controlling and reporting tool with which you can control your company's internal CSR management.
Substance Policy Working Group
The Substance Policy working group is concerned with all questions relating to the topic of substance regulations and the obligations they entail for the mechanical and plant engineering sector. Among others, the CLP Regulation, the REACH Regulation, the POP Regulation and the RoHS Directive play an important role.
Corporate Responsibility Working Group
The working group addresses strategic issues of sustainability and ecosocially responsible corporate management.
Working Group Industry Dialogue Human Rights
The German government is launching a company survey ("monitoring") on the subject of human rights. The VDMA expects this to set the course for future specifications. It is therefore essential for as many companies as possible to participate!



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Largest industry network in Europe

3,600 primarily medium-sized member companies in the capital goods industry make the VDMA the largest industrial association in Europe and the most important network organization in the industry.

Strong representation of interests

The VDMA is the most important voice of the machinery and equipment manufacturing industry. It represents the common economic, technical and scientific interests of the industry in Germany and around the world.

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More than 500 VDMA employees worldwide support you with practical services to make the right decisions in your company - along the entire value chain.