Life Cycle Initiative Presentations • Nashville, Tennessee, USA • 17-21 November 2013
The 34th North American Annual Meeting of SETAC provided an opportunity for profiling the Life Cycle Initiative’s work programme. In particular, the Life Cycle Initiative presentation “Why Globally Harmonized Life Cycle Impact Indicators and Methods are Needed” provided an overview of the advantages and disadvantages of a harmonized, consensual list of environmental impact category indicators embedded in a consistent methodological framework and a vision and plan for how such a system can be realised (i.e., Flagship Activity 1b). See the abstract below:
Why Globally Harmonized Life Cycle Impact Indicators and Methods are Needed
B.W. Vigon, SETAC; O. Jolliet, University of Michigan / School of Public Health; R. Frischknecht, Treeze Ltd.; S. Valdivia, UNEP / Secretariat ILCI
Until now the development of life cycle impact indicators and methods has been a research effort carried out to explore the possibilities of impact characterization within the bounds of the ISO 14040 and 14044 standards. However, such an approach, while encouraging creativity and expansion of the procedural basis for impact assessment, has severe limitations in a globally practiced methodology, whether for product improvement, information dissemination or policy implementation. The challenge now is to create a consensual list of environmental impact category indicators embedded in a consistent methodological framework. Such a set (or subset) of consensual environmental impact category indicators can be used in environmental product information schemes, corporate reporting of multinational companies, international and/or national environmental policy and common LCAwork commissioned by governments and companies. This presentation provides the advantages and disadvantages of a harmonized system and a vision and plan for how such a system can be realized. The work is being supported as a multi-year flagship project within the UNEP/SETAC Life Cycle Initiative.
The Initiative held a mini-workshop on Integration, Normalization and Weighting as part of the Flagship project on LCIA (Flagship 1b) and an informal ILCB Forum was also held. Outcomes are being compiled and will be noted on this web page.
The elements below will be added as they are made available to us.