Status of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) activities in the Nordic Region

State of the Art: LCA in the Nordic Region


The status of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) activities in the Nordic Region (period 1995-97) is presented, based on more than 350 reported studies from industrial companies and research institutes in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Finland. A large number of industrial sectors is represented, with car components, building materials, pulp and paper products, electronic components and packaging as the most important ones. All aspects of LCA methodology are used: 90% use impact assessment, 80% impact assessment and valuation step. In most studies, more than one valuation method is used for ranking environmental impacts.

LCA studies are well integrated in the business activities in many large Nordic corporations. From the early attempts, more familiar with LCA methodology, LCA has been integrated in strategy development, product development, process development and, to some extent, marketing. LCA has not only been used in the strict sense presented in the ISO 14040-43 standards. The systems approach, which is the basis for LCA, has also been modified and used in Sustainable Product Development, and in Environmental Performance Indicator and Product Declarations development. Future applications should be within Environmental Impact Assessments.


Applications industrial sectors LCA software systerns Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology nordic region status report 


  1. Ahbe, S.;Braunschweig, A.;Müller-Wenk, R. (1990): Methodik für Ökobilanzen auf der Basis ökologischer Optimierung. Schriftenreihe Umwelt Nr. 133, BUWAL, Bern, SwitzerlandGoogle Scholar
  2. Baumann, H.;Rydberg, T. (1994): Life Cycle Assessment: A comparison between three methods for impact analysis and valuation. J. Cleaner Prod. 2, 13–20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Baumann, H. (1992): Utvärdering med index. Beräkning av två up-psättingar norska index. CIT-ekoIogic 1992:2, Chalmers Industriteknik, GøteborgGoogle Scholar
  4. Baumann, H. (1996): LCA Use in Swedish Industry. Int. J. LCA 1, 122–126CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Hansen, E. (1995): Environmental Ranking of Products. Environmental Project no 281, Danish Environmental Protection Agency, Copenhagen (in Danish)Google Scholar
  6. Hanssen, O.J. (1993): Proceedings from International Workshop Product Systems Development and Improvements in a Life Cycle Context. Østfold Research Foundation, Working Paper AR02.93Google Scholar
  7. Hanssen, O.J. (1997): Sustainable Industrial Product Systems. Dr. techn. thesis, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim. Østfold Research Foundation, Working Paper AR.20.97Google Scholar
  8. Hanssen, O.J. (1998): Environmental Impacts of Product Systems in a Life Cycle Perspective. A General Survey based on 18 Life Cycle Assessment Studies. J. Cleaner Prod. 6, 299–311CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Hanssen, O.J.;Ronning, A.;Rydberg, T. (1995): Sustainable Product Development. Methods and Experiences from Case Projects. Final Results from the NEP project. Østfold Research Foundation. Research Paper OR 28.95, 82 ppGoogle Scholar
  10. Hauschild, M.;Wenzel, H. (1998): Environmental Assessment of Industrial Products. Vol. 2: Scientific Background. Institute for Product Development, Technical University of Denmark, Chapmann & HallGoogle Scholar
  11. Karlson, L. (1993): Product Ecology Project. Participants’ experiences. ABB Corporate Research, Väserås, SwedenGoogle Scholar
  12. Lindfors, L.G.;Christiansen, K.;Hoffmann, L.;Virtanen, Y.;Juntilla, V.;Leskinen, A.;Hanssen, O.J.;Rønning, A.;Ekvall, T.;Finnveden, G. (1995a): LCA Nordic Technical Reports No. 1–9. Tema Nord 1995: 502Google Scholar
  13. Lindfors, L.G.;Christiansen, K.;Hoffmann, L.;Virtanen, Y.;Juntilla, V.;Leskinen, A.;Hanssen, O.J.;Rønning, A.;Ekvall, T.;Finnveden, G. (1995b): LCA Nordic Technical Reports No. 10 and Special Reports No. 1-2. Tema Nord 1995:503Google Scholar
  14. Magnussen, K.;Rønning, A.;Møller, H. (1998): Valuation in LCA. Østfold Research Foundation, OR.11.98 (in Norwegian)Google Scholar
  15. Møller, H.;Hanssen, O.J.;Lindfors, L.G.;Svensson, T.;Hoffmann, L.;Stranddorf, H.K.;Toldsted, J.T.;Rønning, A. (1998): Nordic project on Implementation of Environmental Labelling Type III In the business sector (NIMBUS). Report from the pilot study on Nordic Environmental Product Declarations. Østfold Research Foundation, OR.27.98Google Scholar
  16. Myklebust, O.; Lamvik, T.; Støren, S. (1997): Nordlist LCA Project. Life Cycle Assessment in Product Development. NTNU, SINTEF, STØ, DTU. SINTEF Report No. STF38 S97001,74 ppGoogle Scholar
  17. Nordic Council of Ministers (Nord, 1992): Product Life Cycle Assessments — Principles and Methodology.Nord, 1992:9, 288 ppGoogle Scholar
  18. Nordic Council of Ministers (Nord, 1995): Nordic Guidelines on Product Life-Cycle Assessments.Nord, 1995:20, 222 ppGoogle Scholar
  19. Nordic Council of Ministers (Nord, 1998): Common Nordic Seminar on Product Oriented Environmental Strategies (POMS). Seminar Report, March 1998Google Scholar
  20. Økstad, E. (1997): Environmental Performance Indicators in Industry. Practical experiences with developing EPI’s in 12 companies. European Green Table/Federation of Norwegian Business and Industries, Oslo, 57 ppGoogle Scholar
  21. Pedersen, B.;Christensen, K. (1992): A Meta-Review on Product Life Cycle Assessment.Nord, 1992:9, 24–104Google Scholar
  22. Rønning, A.;Vold, M. (1997): Nordic Seminar on LCA. Østfold Research Foundation OR.90.97Google Scholar
  23. Rønning, A.;Hanssen, O.J.;Møller, H. (1995): Environmentally Sound Product Development of Offshore Coatings. Østfold Research Foundation Project Report OR.40.95, 32 ppGoogle Scholar
  24. Ryding, S.-O.;Steen, B. (1992): The EPS Environment Method. An application of environmental accounting principles for evaluation and valuation of environmental impacts in product design. Swedish Environmental Research Institute Report, GothenburgGoogle Scholar
  25. Ryding, S.-O. (1993): International Experiences of Environmentally Sound Product Development Based on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). Federation of Swedish Industries, StockholmGoogle Scholar
  26. Udo de Haas, H. A.;Wrisberg, N. (1997): Life Cycle Assessment: State-of-the-Art and Research Priorities. LCA Documents, Vol. 1. Eco-Informa Press, BayreuthGoogle Scholar
  27. Vold, M.;Rønning, A. (1995): LCA of Cement and Concrete — Main report. Østfold Research Foundation Project Report OR.32.95,50 ppGoogle Scholar
  28. Wenzel, H.;Hausghild, M.;Alting, L. (1997): Environmental Assessment of Industrial Products. Vol. 1 : Tools and Case studies. Institute for Product Development, Technical University of Denmark, Chapmann & HallGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Ecomed Publishers 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Østfold Research FoundationFredrikstad

Personalised recommendations