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Climate delegates in Paris to see life cycle thinking in action

From 30 November to 11 December, 25,000 delegates from more than 190 countries will come together for the COP21 Climate Conference in Paris, France to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C. The delegates and a further 25,000 people will participate in side events to explore tangible solutions for achieving a low carbon economy, from grass roots education to business strategy.

The only off site visit is to Loos-en-Gohelle in Northern France, where life cycle thinking has been a driver for the transition to a low carbon economy. Around the former mine site “Base 11/19” renewable energy, green buildings and circular economy demonstration centres have been set up, all of which have been inspired by Life Cycle Thinking. The French President Francois Hollande and the American economist Jeremy Rifkin will be among the VIPs joining the event.

The training centre for eco-materials explains the whole of life impacts of building materials and showcases insulation, flooring, windows and other elements that have been eco-designed and provide transparent information to consumers via Environmental Product Declarations. Thousands of building professionals have been trained there.

Rehafutur brought together dozens of small local companies to renovate a former mining engineer’s house using eco-materials and latest digital technology to achieve a comfortable low energy building. A life cycle assessment was done of the building to inform the design process.

The solar testing platform Lumiwatt provides invaluable real-life performance data on various photovoltaic technologies to better evaluate projects. It is also triggering research into other aspects in the life cycle, such as recycling panels and optimisation of storage.

An integral part of these demonstrators is cd2e’s [avniR] Life Cycle Platform, also based on the “Base 11/19”, where small businesses and local authorities can access databases, software and human expertise to help their projects. Jodie Bricout from cd2e will be sharing experiences in the food sector and around circular economy at the Australian Life Cycle Assessment Society’s conference series in Melbourne from November 23 to 27.

If you will be in Europe, COP21 participants can sign up for the “TRI-GV: the Train for Change” side event


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