Project Title: Marine Impacts in LCA (MariLCA)

Co-Implementing Partners: FSCLI e.V., Politécnica Universidad Católica del Perú (PUCP), CIRAIG, UCSB, NTNU

Funding Partners: Plastics Europe, and the funding partners of the Life Cycle Initiative

Project Summary:

MariLCA works to harmonize the  development of environmental impact pathways and characterization factors for marine impact assessment in LCA, specifically from marine (plastic) litter. The project has three phases

Phase 1: Develop a framework document on different impact pathways associated with marine litter and identify the gaps and building blocks (2019).

Phase 2: Fill in methodological gaps in LCIA related to marine litter (2019 – 2022).

Phase 3: Build consensus to deliver a harmonized and consensus-based impact pathway framework and methods addressing plastic litter impacts in LCA (2023-2025).

In June 2020, a framework paper was presented in collaboration with NTN University of Norway to over 90 people during MarILCA’s “Webinar on Introducing the Methodological Framework”. This was published in the Ecological Indicators journal in July 2021, by John S. Woods, Francesca Verones, Olivier Jolliet, Ian Vázquez-Rowe and Anne-Marie Boulay.

In April 2021, a paper presenting effect factors was published in the Journal of Industrial Ecology, entitled Aquatic micro- and nano-plastics in life cycle assessment: Development of an effect factor for the quantification of their physical impact on biota. The publication, co-authored by Jérôme Lavoie, Anne-Marie Boulay and Cécile Bulle, provides effect factors which show the impact that micro- and nanoplastics have physically in aquatic environments.

Lavoie, J., Boulay, A. and Bulle, C. (2021). ‘Aquatic micro- and nano-plastics in life cycle assessment’, Journal of Industrial Ecology, 1-13.

Other projects are ongoing, to model parts of these impact pathways (detailed here).

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