Currently, a technology that performs well above normal standards or that presents an innovative approach to solve an environmental problem can face difficulties in penetrating the market due to lack of independent and credible evidence of its advantages. On the other hand, technology purchasers or investors committed to finding the best solution for their situation are often faced with non-comparable, incomplete or non-trustworthy performance information when assessing the available choices on the market.

The concept of the Environmental Technology Verification programme is to offer a verification procedure to cutting edge environmental technologies that may otherwise find it difficult to establish their environmental added value. The verification procedure allows for an independent assessment and validation of the manufacturer’s claims on the performance and environmental benefits of their technology. The information produced by the verification is public and can be used to compare performance parameters and therefore becomes an extremely useful tool to convince third-parties of the merits of a technology, potentially enhancing its market value and acceptance.

ETV is neither a label nor a certification scheme; it ensures that the claims are as structured and complete as possible so as to present a clear assessment of the entire technology’s potential and value, but it does not evaluate the technology’s performance against standard or pre-defined criteria. The information provided, in the form of a Statement of Verification, gives the possibility for direct and objective comparison between different technologies reducing the risk on adopting new technologies and encouraging informed and sound investments. ETV results could be used to prove compliance with any relevant legislation, to underpin a bid in public tendering, to convince investors or customers of the reliability of performance claims and to avoid having to repeat demonstrations for different users.

The EU-ETV Pilot Programme, operating as one of the initiatives under the Eco-Innovation Action Plan of the European Commission, set out to establish the foundations for a true European-level tool supporting and promoting eco-innovation, mainly in highly dynamic and innovative Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs). The programme is targeted at environmental technologies whose value cannot be proved through existent standards or certification schemes and whose claims could benefit from a credible verification procedure as a guarantee to investors. In a first stage the Pilot Programme is currently running in specific Technology Areas which could then be expanded in the future as the Programme becomes further implemented.

Take a look at the technology areas covered and at the eligibility criteria:


The structure for the European ETV Pilot Programme revolves around the close interaction between proposers, i.e. technology manufacturers, SMEs, technology representatives, and organisations fulfilling the role of Verification Bodies that carry out the verification procedure. Verification Bodies can only act within the ETV Programme if they have received accreditation from their National Accreditation Body under the standard of ISO 17020. The Technical Working Groups (TWGs) ensure a harmonious implementation of the programme by bringing together experts nominated by Verification Bodies and Commission appointed experts and together they provide guidance to the implementation and development of the Programme. The Stakeholder Forum gathers the opinions and advice from all ETV followers and stakeholders, which is then transmitted to the Steering Group, composed by members of all participating Member States and observers, so that it can properly fuflfill its leading role in the implementation of the Programme. An overview of the ETV structure is presented below where you can also learn more about each entity.

ETV Structure