Environmental report details how new packaging concept for DuPont™ Tyvek® 500 Xpert can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions

The results of a reporti, commissioned by DuPont, reveal that the new DuPont™  Tyvek® 500 Xpert Eco-Pack can have a significantly  reduced impact on the environment when compared to its standard packaging format. Accordingly, over the entire lifecycle of the packagingii, there is the potential to  reduce the emission of greenhouse gases by three tonnes CO2 equivalent, achieve a saving of 77,700 MJ of primary energy, and decrease solid waste by 820kg.  Besides the environmental benefits, the new  Eco-Pack can help users of the garments avoid costs relating to the handling and disposal of packaging at the end of their useful life.

In its standard packaging form, each  Tyvek® 500 Xpert garment is individually packed in a polybag  together with a user manual (referred to as Instructions for Use, or IFU). 25 coveralls are then grouped within a value pack, and each box contains 4 value packs, making 100 garments per box. “As part of DuPont’s new  Tyvek® 500 Xpert Eco-Pack packaging concept, the 25 garments within the value pack are no longer individually packed, and there is just one user manual per value pack. Hence the packaging saving equates to 100 percent in terms of the polybags, and 96 percent in IFUs,” explains Deborah Sondag, marketing specialist EMEA, DuPont Protection Technologies.


The report, entitled The Environmental Benefits of Packaging Reduction, and carried out by BIO by Deloitte, quantifies and compares the environmental impact of both packaging concepts using a standardized Life Cycle Assessment approach.  As a first step, a life cycle inventory is created for the individual stages involved in the production of the polybags and IFUs, their delivery to DuPont  (up-stream processes), their onward transportation to customers and ultimate disposal (down-stream processes). Thereafter follows an evaluation of their environmental impact in terms of global warming potential, air acidification potential, net water consumption, primary energy demand and waste generation.

Three separate scenarios were considered for the assessment, differing in terms of number of garments shipped, shipping distance and end-of-life scenario (landfill, incineration or recycling, depending on the waste management practice of the destination country).  Based on a shipment quantity of 35,000 coveralls transported by truck to France (scenario B), the following benefits of Tyvek® 500 Xpert Eco-Pack over standard packaging were predicted: 


Impact category

Avoided amount


Climate change


kg CO2 eq

Equivalent to

The impact on climate change of


Paris-Toulouse flights for one passenger



kg SO2 eq

Equivalent to

The impact on acidification of the monthly electricity consumption of


European inhabitants

Net Water Consumption



Equivalent to

The water consumption required for



Primary energy demand



Equivalent to

The primary energy demand of the monthly electricity consumption of


European inhabitants

The primary energy demand of


Kg of crude oil

Waste creation



Equivalent to

The monthly municipal solid waste generation of


European inhabitants

Deborah Sondag continues: “In a context where environmental impacts are more and more important regarding the communication strategy of a firm, DuPont wants to provide its customers with clear environmental claims on these improvement actions, allowing them to easily integrate the related environmental benefits within their own environmental management program.”

Tyvek® 500 Xpert is the market-leading Type 5 (particulate) and Type 6 (liquid) disposable protective garment. Indeed, whilst there are many alternative garments also certified as providing similar levels of protection, a detailed look at their results delivers greater insight as to their actual barrier performance of the garment in question. For instance, the average total inward leakage of particles into a Tyvek® 500 Xpert garment, measured as part of the testing requirements for Type 5 protective clothing, is just 1 %. This compares favourably to 5% for a typical microporous (MPF) film garment or 10% for a typical SMS garment (see figure 2).  Factors determining the particle barrier provided by the garment include the fabric used, seam construction and overall design.

Also in terms of providing a durable barrier to liquid, it is worthwhile looking at Tyvek® performance in closer detail: In tests used to determine the resistance of fabrics to liquid penetration and permeation, Tyvek® is demonstrated to provide a high barrier both before and after abrasion, while the levels of competitive materials are either inferior from the outset or fall away spectacularly after abrasion.  

For further information on the Tyvek® 500 Xpert Eco-Pack, and its reduced environmental impact, please visit www.tyvek.co.uk/ecopack.



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