LCA Project Examples

 

 

Building and Construction Sector
 

  • Commercial and Residential Building Energy Technologies
    Hundreds of environmental LCAs of complex energy-related technologies performed for an online whole-building Sustainability tool developed by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), called Building Industry Reporting and Design for Sustainability (BIRDS).  Products evaluated include windows; HVAC equipment; insulation products; and lighting. BIRDS’ commercial database includes energy, environmental, and cost measurements for over 12,000 buildings. BIRDS’ residential database includes energy, environmental, and cost measurements for over 9,000 residential buildings. The tool evaluates and compares buildings complying with current and past editions of energy codes, informing policy-makers, the building community, and others about the benefits of using energy-efficient building products and assemblies.

 

  • Building Products (multiple categories)
    Hundreds of Environmental LCAs of building products performed for an online tool developed by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) that compares the environmental impact and cost measurements of building products, called Building for Environmental and Economic Sustainability (BEES). Product categories include but are not limited to: framing; exterior siding; flooring; roofing; architectural coatings; cement; insulation; and plumbing. BEES includes more than 250 generic and manufacturer-specific building and construction products and is regularly updated with new product additions.
     

  • Flooring Products

       LCAs of several of Mannington Mills’ major flooring product lines were performed to align     
       with their Environmental Management System initiatives.

 

  • Foam Insulation
    A third-party peer reviewed environmental LCA and Life Cycle Cost assessment was conducted for a foam insulation product.  The study entailed assessing the use of this product in commercial buildings in 5 climate zones over a 40 year study period. The LCA incorporated building energy simulations using DOE-2 software for commercial buildings. In addition to internal Research & Development, the study was used in support of a permit application for a proposed new manufacturing facility.

 

Electronics Sector

 

  • Print Cartridges
    A third-party peer reviewed environmental LCA was performed to compare Hewlett-Packard Company Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) cartridges vs. their remanufactured alternatives. The study was used to showcase some of the environmental benefits of OEM cartridges, especially when accounting for product quality.
    LCA - HP Laserjet cartridges

 

  • Closed-Loop Materials Recycling
    A third-party peer reviewed environmental LCA was performed to compare recycled vs. virgin polyethylene terephthalate (PET, a type of plastic) in Hewlett-Packard Company original cartridges. The study highlighted the environmental benefits of using recycled PET, and HP showcased its closed loop recycling process via the HP Planet Partners take-back program.
    LCA - HP recycled PET study
     

  • Retail Photo Systems
    A third-party peer reviewed environmental LCA was performed to compare popular retail photo systems which were on the market at the time of the study: Hewlett-Packard Company Photosmart Minilabs and Microlabs vs. silver halide retail photo systems. The study was used to highlight some of the environmental life cycle benefits of using HP’s dry photo processing technology instead of the more traditional silver halide technology.

    LCA - HP printing systems
     

Mining & Metals Sector

 

  • Metallurgical Products and Chemicals
    Environmental LCAs of metallurgical molybdenum products and molybdenum chemicals  were performed for the International Molybdenum Association to assess environmental inputs and outputs of the global average production of these products. These industry-wide studies ensure the fair and accurate representation of global molybdenum production data, are used as input to broader LCA studies, and provide life-cycle related environmental information to member companies, customers, and stakeholders. Four Elements provides ongoing support on life cycle issues.