Agenzia nazionale per le nuove tecnologie, l'energia e lo sviluppo economico sostenibile


Critical Review of the current research needs and limitations related to ISO-LCA practice

descrizione cover

Sort of publication : BOOK

Authors: A. Zamagni, P. Buttol, P.L. Porta, R. Buonamici. P. Masoni, J. Guinée, R. Heijungs, T. Ekvall, R. Bersani, A. BienKowska, U. Pretato

Publisher: ENEA

pp. 124, 2008

ISBN: 88-8286-166-X

Price: free


This volume has been produced within CALCAS project, the EU 6th Framework Program Co-ordination Action for innovation in Life-Cycle Analysis for Sustainability.

CALCAS is aimed at identifying short- mid- and long-term research lines on life cycle analysis approaches in supporting the sustainability decision making process.

Starting point of the project is Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) standardised by ISO 14040 series: indeed, despite the standardisation process has contributed to its broad acceptance and wide use, there are a number of shortcomings which cannot be resolved through standardisation and which are often considered too restrictive, in particular for meso (e.g. waste treatment, industry sectors, etc.) and macro (e.g. complex technological systems) scale applications, where sustainability problems reside.

The present report deals with a review of the scientific literature on ISO-LCA, performed in order to identify present limits and opportunities for LCA, in particular: intrinsic limits of ISO-LCA due to assumptions and simplifications; elements in current ISO standards which are not in line with new scientific developments or best practices; new directions for broadening (e.g.: including economic and social aspects, or covering new environmental aspects) and deepening LCA towards the definition of a New LCA (e.g.: including behavioural aspects in the inventory modelling or including more fate and exposure mechanisms in impact assessment).

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