Sustainable Cities and Communities

Living Edition
| Editors: Walter Leal Filho, Anabela Marisa Azul, Luciana Brandli, Pinar Gökcin Özuyar, Tony Wall

Building Lifecycle Sustainability Analysis

  • Erin A. HopkinsEmail author
Living reference work entry


According to ISO (the International Organization for Standardization), life-cycle analysis (LCA) is a “compilation and evaluation of the inputs, outputs and the potential environmental impacts of a product system throughout its life cycle” (ISO 2006). The life cycle is defined as “consecutive and interlinked stages of a product system, from raw material acquisition or generation from natural resources to final disposal” (ISO 2006).


The usage of LCA began in the United States in the late 1960s with Coca Cola being one of the early adopters by examining the effects the materials, energy, and environmental effects throughout the package manufacturing practice (Hunt et al. 1996). Reducing solid waste was the main point of focus of LCAs until the mid-1970s when energy took the main stage due to the energy crisis. In 1987, the idea of considering the future environmental impacts as a whole on future generations gained attention when the United Nations issued the...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Apparel, Housing and Resource ManagementVirginia TechBlacksburgUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Erin Hopkins
    • 1
  1. 1.Virginia TechBlacksburgUSA