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Life Cycle Analysis: Methodology, Practice & Limits

Wednesday 28 September 2022 (2 - 5pm)

A workshop organised by the Sustainable Futures group, Department of Management, University of Exeter Business School, co-hosted by the Environment & Sustainability Institute, Penryn Campus, University of Exeter.



Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) has emerged as one of the main tools to assess the environmental impact of products and services and is hence seen as vital for the transition towards a net-zero future. It allows the measurement of greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental impacts throughout the whole life cycle of products such as the Cornish pasty, taking account of the ways in which the raw materials are made available, how the product is manufactured and then later packaged, distributed, consumed and disposed of. While many experts think that LCA is the most promising tool to address climate change and other environmental ills, a range of limitations and critiques have increasingly been discussed: from the lack of data availability to the complexity of the approach, to the over-reliance on environmental indicators that can be quantified numerically, leaving environmental quality aside. This workshop will introduce the LCA approach and its methodology, outline a range of practical examples and applications, as well as discuss its limitations.

We are proud to be celebrating the ESI’s first decade of successful operation and are holding a series of events to mark #esi10 throughout this academic year.