Life Cycle Assessment

 

Environmental Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a tool that evaluates the environmental impacts of a product or process through all stages of its life, thereby helping businesses to make informed decisions about product or process improvement and optimization along the value chain. It is a tool that enables a company to go beyond traditional compliance and tackle environmental and sustainability issues from a cradle to grave standpoint.

©Four Elements Consulting LLC

 

 

Early forms of LCA began in the 1960s with a main focus on quantifying energy and resources in products. In 1969, the Coca-Cola Company commissioned one of the first LCAs to evaluate beverage packaging.* Despite this landmark study, only during the last 15-20 years has LCA become a popular tool for many aspects of business decision-making throughout an organization.

 

In the past, the desire to reduce waste, energy, and/or costs was traditionally what motivated companies to undertake LCAs. Today, green building standards and codes, environmentally preferable purchasing programs, regulatory policy, and public demand for greater transparency are driving LCA across all industries, in companies of all sizes around the globe.

 

There are several ways an LCA can help your company achieve its business and environmental goals:

 

Companies & Manufacturers

 

  • Reduce bottom line by identifying environmental ‘hot spots’ and driving value chain efficiencies

  • Develop innovative/differentiated products

  • Demonstrate supply chain transparency

  • Support Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives

  • Develop Product Environmental Footprints (PEFs) or Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs)

  • Address stakeholder requests

 

 

Designers & Builders

 

  • Gain points for green building rating programs (e.g., LEED, Green Globes)

  • Support building and construction codes (e.g., International Green Construction Code, CALGreen)

  • Decrease operating and embodied impacts in buildings

  • Evaluate building product or system alternatives

 

 

Industry Associations

 

  • Represent member companies’ interests to customers and stakeholders

  • Strengthen market share of industry’s products

  • Represent industry information fairly and accurately while supplying LCA data

  • Establish target benchmarks for member companies

 

 

Government

 

  • Represent member companies’ interests to customers and stakeholders

  • Strengthen market share of industry’s products

  • Represent industry information fairly and accurately while supplying LCA data

  • Establish target benchmarks for member companies

 

 

Whether your company is large or small, public or private, driven by Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives or budgetary concerns, Four Elements can help. For over 20 years, we have worked closely with our clients, bringing to every project an unsurpassed depth and breadth of LCA skills and experience that is transferable across all industries and sectors. 

 

Four Elements will work with you to understand your unique situation, challenges, and objectives, tailoring our services to your needs.

 

Contact us now to learn more about how an LCA could help your business. 

 

Click button to see project examples.

 

* Source: www.coca-colacompany.com