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From Bordeaux to Melbourne; sharing LCM knowledge

The 7th international LCM conference in Bordeaux France last week hosted 650 participants from across the globe, including ALCAS 2015 Conference Series on Life Cycle Assessment organiser Tim Grant.

“Business, academia and NGOs shared the importance of local, regional, national and global perspectives for life cycle management. Collaboration on developing tools, generating data or experimenting new business models can benefit all partners,” said Tim.

Bringing this knowledge from Bordeaux to Melbourne, international keynote speaker Philip Strothmann, co-founder of the newly formed Forum for Sustainability through Life Cycle Innovation (FSLCI) will present the main lessons at LCM Bordeaux at LCM Australia 2015. The 9th Australian Conference on Life Cycle Assessment and Life Cycle Management will be held from 24th to 26th November in Melbourne.

LCM Australia 2015 organising committee member, Jodie Bricout member of the UNEP/SETAL Life Cycle Initiative Board, FSLCI Board and co-organiser of LCM in Bordeaux with the [avniR] platform, will share the latest on international collaborations in the circular economy through her participation with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

“International collaboration around life cycle thinking took a whole new dimension at LCM2015, the first to be jointly organised by an international partnership between University of Bordeaux, the CIRAIG research centre in Montréal and the NGO [avniR] platform from Northern France,” Jodie said.

Businesses such as Solvay, Airbus, Nestlé, Volkswagen, Umicore, BASF, Renault and Amcor shared their experience in using life cycle management to translate sustainability strategy to action. Examples ranged from using LCA to improve specific products or to communicate environmental benefits of their products to customers, to a strategic tool for implementing circular economic models.

Latest scientific research was presented to improve methods for evaluating environmental impacts (notably toxicity) and integrate social aspects into life cycle tools. Organizational LCA attracted a lot of interest, notably led through the European Organizational Environmental Footprint (OEF) and UNEP/SETAC Life Cycle Initiative projects.

The Product and Organisation Environmental Footprint from the European Commission currently being tested in hundreds of companies, featured along with the upcoming Circular Economy Package that the EU plans to launch at the end of 2015.

Beyond Europe, participants showed how life cycle approaches are helping make sound policy decisions around transport in Sri Lanka, packaging in Germany, product information in Japan, the electricity sector in Norway, resource management in South Africa, waste management in Brazil and cleaner production in Chile.

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