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Life Cycle Analysis

  • By: Marco Orsini
  • In: Green Business: An A-to-Z Guide
  • Edited by: Nevin Cohen & Paul Robbins
  • Subject:Sustainability, Environmental Policy & Law (general)

Life cycle analysis (or assessment) or LCA, is a method for evaluating the total environmental impact of a product or service. The major work involved in conducting an LCA is to compile all the inputs and outputs of a product or a system of products, and to evaluate the potential environmental impacts of a product or system throughout its life cycle, from extraction of raw materials through manufacturing, use, and disposal.

LCA is a methodological tool that helps calculate the total environmental costs (including externalities such as pollution) of a particular product or service over its lifetime or to compare the costs of different options by applying a life cycle perspective of activities related to processes or products. The life cycle perspective focuses on the entire ...

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