Life Cycle Check

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Product Life Cycle Check
A Guide© Translation

Henrik Wenzel and Nina Caspersen, Institute for Product Development, Anders Schmidt, dk-TEKNIK Special edition adapted for course 42372, Tech.University of Denmark by dr. Michael Hauschild, September 2000. © IPU. First draft can only be used outside IPU with special permission. -do not copy-

Preface
This Guide has been written in connection with the project with the Danish title Stimulering af mindre virksomheders interesse for arbejdet med renere produkter (Stimulating small companies’ incentive for producing environmentally cleaner products) sponsored by the Danish Environmental Protection Agency. The project was managed by TIC (Technological Information Centres). The Guide can be used as course material but can also be used as a supporting tool for the preliminary assessment of a product’s environmental properties. The guide was subsequently translated and further elaborated by Mrs. Christine Molin, Institute for Product Development, Denmark and reviewed and commented by Dr. Michael Hauschild, IPT, Technical University of Denmark, Dr. Per Nielsen, Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand, Prof. Chris Buckley, University of Natal, Durban, South Africa, and Dr. Stig Irving Olsen and Dr. Niels Frees, Institute for Product Development, Denmark and finally by the authors.

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Content
Preface …………………………………………………………….. 2 1. Introduction …………………………………………………… 4 1.1 User guide ……. …………………………………………… 5 2. Choice of product……………………………………………… 6 3. The service provided by the product ………………………… 7 3.1 The functional unit ……………………………………….. 11 3.2 Secondary services………………………………………….. 13 4. The product life cycle ………………………………………….. 15 4.1 Overview of the product life …………………………….. 15 4.2 Interactions with adjoining systems .…………………….. 23 5. Preliminary environmental assessment ……………………. 25 5.1 Materials ……………………………………………………27 5.2 Energy ………………………………………………………. 28 5.3 Chemicals………………………………………………….. 34 5.4 Other ……………………………………………………….. 37 5.5 MECO-matrix ……………………………………………… 38 6. Interpretation and further work ..…………………………… 39 6.1 The further work …………………………………………. 42

References …..…………………………………………………… 45

Appendices: 1. Overview of known reserves and supply horizons of selected resources … ……………………………………………. ….. …… 47 2. Overview of energy and resource aspects for certain materials and energy consumption of certain forms of transportation …………. 48 3. Template for preparation of a Life Cycle Check ……………… 50

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1. Introduction
Product Oriented Environmental Strategies (POMS) in Denmark In 1996, the Danish Environmental Protection Agency published a proposal for an intensified product oriented environmental initiative [1]. The purpose was to support and contribute to the development and marketing of cleaner products in order to reduce the impacts associated with production, use and disposal of products. The proposal also outlines the framework needed to promote the availability and sales of environmentally improved products on a market, which increasingly puts environmental issues on the agenda. However, it is crucial that an improved environmental effort does not jeopardise the competitiveness of the companies, this would neither be beneficial to the environment nor the economy. Many companies are aware of the increasing demand for information on products’ environmental properties. In Denmark, for instance, all public purchase must include environmental considerations, and for many product areas, environmental Guidelines for this are being drafted. Also companies, which have adopted the product oriented environmental strategy, set environmental demands to their subcontractors. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) Since the late eighties, intensive work has been undertaken in Denmark to develop methods and tools for the environmental assessment of products and services. Many industrial companies have adopted the concept of LCA. During 1998, a survey of Danish...
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