Additional technical information


Life Cycle


The Life Cycle of a product is its history, ranging from raw material origin to its end as waste. That is, from the cradle to the grave. For any product, life cycle includes all of these stages:

Sustainability


Sustainable development is meeting the needs of the present without compromising the resources and the needs of future generations, as stated at the Earth Summit held in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro. This definition was developed in the summit by Dr. Brundlandt within Brundlandt Commission report.

Sustainability, therefore, should consider three main aspects: economic, environmental and social.

Therefore, all these aspects must be assessed within the life cycle of any product, service, activity, etc..

Sustainability can be represented by a triangle in which are the relationships between environmental effectiveness, economic viability and social acceptability.

Life Cycle Analysis


The Analysis or Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) tool is an accounting process that evaluates a product, process or activity throughout its life cycle and is given some environmental impacts. Throughout each stage of product life cycle it quantifies the extraction and consumption of resources (material and energy) and emissions to air, water and soil.

In the application of LCA, the methodology outlined in ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 is followed in order to study the environmental burdens associated with the studied products. This will define the objectives of the study, the functional unit, system boundaries and the working hypothesis. Then an inventory of the systems studied and the impact assessment and environmental loads are made.

Goals of the study: assess the environmental impact of different products of the daily shopping, comparing different types of packaging (size and material) and evaluating the possibility of recycling the packaging

Functional unit: is the amount of each product considered in the system (both inputs and outputs). This is defined for each particular food, depending on the method of sale, for example: 1 kg of apples, 1 liter of water, 1 loaf of bread, etc.

System boundaries: they determine which processes are included in this LCA and which processes are not taken into account.

Inventory: during processign, inputs and outputs of each stage are taken into account.

Assessment: as indicators, or categories of impact, emissions of greenhouse gases (equivalent kg CO2) and water consumption (liters) are studied.

LCA has different uses and applications. Among the main ones are:

For a given process, the LCA defines the behavior of the process life cycle stages in relation to the environment, identifies the stages of development that have the greatest environmental impact, and compares it with other similar process.



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