Choosing the right lubricant has never been such a difficult challenge. Hundreds of competing products are available and the selection criteria is constantly expanding. With the implementation of new environmental regulations and the advancement of bio-oil technology, more and more are considering Environmentally Acceptable Lubricants (EALs) when making their decision.

Ensuring environmental sustainability may not currently be a global mandate, there are usually environmental requirements in place for each country.

Ecolabels were developed to clearly communicate a product's positive contribution to sustainability. Basic information about the possibility of recycling, the content of hazardous substances and the origin of raw materials are all factors considered when designing ecolabels. Simple symbols provide easily identifiable information to help recognize which products meet which ecolabel's standards.

Products that bear ecolabels, such as PANOLIN's bio-hydraulic fluid, HLP SYNTH E, must comply with each ecolabels specific criteria. Compliance begins with the raw materials, each material is specifically chosen to optimize performance of the lubricant, while meeting biodegradability and ecolabel requirements.


From broad ecolabels like the EU Ecolabel to country-specific ecolabels and environmental regulations, like the Eco Mark program in Japan, the Blue Angel in Germany, or the EPA VIDA/VGP in the U.S., there are now hundreds of environmental standards worldwide, each tied to federal, regional and local requirements.

Ecolabels are not necessarily a must for manufacturers, but they do fulfil a wide range of points that help the manufacturer and the end user. Worldwide ecolabel criteria encourage companies to develop products that are durable, easy to repair and recyclable as well as promoting circular economy by encouraging manufacturers to produce less waste and CO₂ during the manufacturing process. In addition, the small signs indicate to consumers that they are helping to protect the environment.


As the market becomes more and more complex and technical requirements change, the respective products must also be constantly adapted. That's why agencies like the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) check their criteria regularly due to the ever-evolving needs for sustainability.

For example, the EPA is in the process of replacing the current EPA Vessel General Permit (VGP) with the EPA Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA), which will continue enforcing the use of EALs in all applications with oil-to-sea interface but will add the requirement to use EALs in deck equipment that extends over the side of the vessel (i.e. booms, derrick arms, cables, hoist gears and more).

The same goes for the European Ecolabel and their 70,000 products that carry the EU environmental label. This reliable environmental label is used to identify environmentally-friendly products and services. The EU Ecolabel is awarded to products and services that meet high environmental standards throughout their life cycle: from raw material extraction to production, distribution and disposal.

The multitude of different requirements and regulations is a great challenge for manufacturers. Many of them are having to compromise the performance of a product to meet the supply chain requirements of a constantly changing ecolabel list. Since the early 1990s, many PANOLIN products have continued to meet the changing requirements of internationally eminent ecolabels.


PANOLIN is a full range lubricants supplier with its core competence in high performing Environmentally Acceptable Lubricants (EALs). The development of biodegradable hydraulic oils at PANOLIN began in 1983 with the evaluation of a wide variety of base oils. The aim was to create the next generation of environmentally friendly hydraulic oils, which on the one hand protect the already heavily polluted environment and its resources and on the other hand correspond to the latest lubricant technology.

PANOLIN HLP SYNTH E combines high performance with ecolabel certifications recognized across the globe. The fully synthetic, zinc-free and environmentally friendly hydraulic fluid is based on saturated synthetic esters with special additive technology. HLP SYNTH E is minimally toxic, meeting OECD standards with its readily biodegradable formula.

HLP SYNTH E hydraulic fluid fulfils the technical requirements of most ecolabels and due to its compliance with VIDA/VGP is now the hydraulic product of choice for any vessels operating in US waterways. The combination of high performance and ecolabel certification has led to many Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), seafaring and international vessels relying on the product. Close exchange with OEMs means that PANOLIN lubricants are always up to date, evaluated and approved according to the latest and world-leading performance standards.

HLP SYNTH E is not only chosen for its environmental benefits. HLP SYNTH E has a working life of up to 20 years, which in turn extends oil-change intervals – leading to CO₂ reduction, less equipment downtime and higher machine efficiency.

This high performing bio-lubricant is designed to prevent gumming and deposits of ageing products even under high thermal load. For years HLP SYNTH E has been used in both marine and onshore applications from CPP, stabilisers and steering equipment, to hydraulic systems used in forestry, earthmoving, and more.


Ecolabels act as an important point of reference for people who want to combine the three pillars of sustainability - economic, ecological and social. They identify services and products alike that are more environmentally friendly. Consequently, products must meet strict criteria to be awarded ecolabels. Definitions of environmental sustainability vary from country to country, from industry to industry, still ecolabels make an important contribution to environmental protection.

To learn more about PANOLIN HLP SYNTH E, all its facets, its applications and special capabilities, or about PANOLIN's complete hydraulic fluid range contact us now.