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  • Overview

    This short course will give you an introduction to life cycle assessment (LCA) methods and how to apply them in real-life situations.

    Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a rapidly evolving tool used to determine impacts of products or systems over a range of environmental and resource issues. Applying this method of assessment is complex and difficult and translating the theory into a credible, transparent and applicable practice can be very challenging.

    The course consists of two parts. You can book both parts together, or choose to do part 1 or 2 only.

    In part 1 (two days) you'll develop a solid understanding of the process, data requirements and how to make use of the results. You'll then get the chance to apply this knowledge to real-life case studies.

    In part 2 (two days) you'll learn how to apply systems thinking and LCA to assess environmental dimension of circular economy, including both technical and biological materials cycles. You'll then learn how to critically evaluate and compare circularity indicator tools with LCA.

    There will be many opportunities to:

    • discuss and benchmark the particular challenges you face within your organisation
    • receive guidance from UCL experts and industry experts

    This CPD course has been developed by UCL in collaboration with Ellen MacArthur Foundation's education team.

    Course content

    This is a two-part course (though you can take either part as a standalone course - see 'Structure and booking options').

    Part 1 - LCA methods

    The first part of the course will cover:

    • introduction to LCA methods
    • life cycle inventory data
    • allocation methods
    • impact assessment methods
    • result intepretation
    • practical issues with LCA and how to overcome them

    Part 2 - LCA application in circular economy

    The second part of the course will cover:

    • application of systems thinking in circular economy
    • application of LCA in circular economy, including both technical and biological materials cycles
    • critical comparative review of LCA and circularity indicator tools
    • comparison of LCA and circularity indicators through case studies
    • application of LCA and circular economy metrics and tools to track performance and prioritise actions relating to circular economy programmes in organisations

    See 'Structure and booking options' for information on

    Who this course is for

    This course is designed for anyone who has to conduct, understand or implement LCAs or associated policies, such as:

    • circular economy consultants
    • businesses involved in circular economy
    • energy specialists
    • engineers
    • interior designers
    • construction companies
    • government: those working in environmental policy
    • local authorities/housing associations
    • manufacturers
    • product designers
    • entrepreneurs/SMEs
    • sustainability consultants
    • sustainability/environmental managers
    • investors who specialise in ‘green’ technologies and products
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