What is Design for Environment?

Design for Environment Definition

Design for environment (DfE) is a design approach to reduce the environmental impact of products, processes, or services. It considers the whole lifecycle, going beyond just the use of recycled materials or proper packaging or disposal.

The DfE approach includes five aspects that follow the lifecycle of a product and enables companies to be more environmentally friendly in their work. The five aspects are:

  • Materials and extraction
  • Production
  • Transport, distribution, and packaging
  • Use
  • End of life, design for disassembly, and design for recycling


Why is design for environment important?

By adopting effective DfE practices, manufacturers can enhance product quality and reduce costs, while reducing the environmental impact of their product

*Source: https://uxdesign.cc

What are four factors that impact design for environment (DfE)?

The four main factors impacting DfE are:

  1. Processing and manufacturing: Raw material extraction, processing, and manufacturing are performed with minimal harm to the environment or human health
  2. Packaging: Reuse of shipping materials, elimination of paper, efficient use of space, and other environmentally responsible methods are used to package and transport products
  3. Disposal or reuse: Design incorporates materials that allow for reuse or refurbishment of a product once it reaches end of life
  4. Energy efficiency: Products are designed to reduce energy consumption throughout the entire lifecycle

*Source: https://en.wikipedia.org

Why do we design for the environment?

DfE practices are used to protect the environment against pollution and waste, reduce energy consumption and raw material usage, and minimize costs throughout the product lifecycle.

*Source: https://uxdesign.cc

What is an example of design for environment?

Using recycled and/or recyclable packaging materials is an example of design for environment.


With tightening environmental legislation and shifting consumer preferences, there’s a greater push for companies to adopt sustainable product development practices and deliver eco-friendly products. Thus, many manufacturers are stepping up to the plate to help build a greener future and enhance our quality of life.

Learn how to streamline environmental compliance for sustainable product development.