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Futura: A new tool for transparent and shareable scenario analysis in prospective life cycle assessment
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9560-3132
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5535-6368
2022 (English)In: Journal of Industrial Ecology, ISSN 1088-1980, E-ISSN 1530-9290, Vol. 26, no 1, p. 134-144Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

While it may be impossible to accurately predict what the world will look like in the future, we can be certain that it will be different from the world of today. By extension, we know that using today's data in life cycle assessment (LCA) studies claiming to represent future scenarios is problematic. For the future impact of products to be estimated in a consistent and meaningful manner in LCA, the background system, most commonly the ecoinvent database, needs to be projected into the future alongside the foreground system modeled in a given study. Futura is a new piece of open-source software which allows LCA practitioners to create and share novel background databases representing arbitrary scenarios. It allows users to import a base database and then start making targeted changes. These changes take three main forms—adding new technologies, regionalizing new or existing technologies, and altering market compositions. All changes made are automatically added to a "recipe." This recipe file can be shared publicly. This recipe can be imported by other users and used to exactly recreate the modified database. The additive and transparent nature of this system means that initially simple scenarios can be built upon by others to progress toward more comprehensive scenarios in a stepwise manner. The inability to build on the work of others is a serious barrier to the progress of the LCA field. Futura goes some way to reduce this barrier in the field of prospective LCA.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Wiley , 2022. Vol. 26, no 1, p. 134-144
Keywords [en]
industrial ecology, life cycle assessment (LCA), open-source software, prospective LCA, scenario analysis, transparency, Database systems, Open source software, Open systems, Background systems, Ecoinvent, Know-that, Life cycle
National Category
Other Environmental Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-307092DOI: 10.1111/jiec.13115ISI: 000625975900001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85102202360OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-307092DiVA, id: diva2:1626425
Note

QC 20220111

Available from: 2022-01-11 Created: 2022-01-11 Last updated: 2023-10-16Bibliographically approved

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Joyce, Peter JamesBjörklund, Anna

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