OpenLCA: Makersite and GreenDelta take Life Cycle Assessment to the Cloud
Environmental consultant GreenDelta, and Makersite GmbH, a data and technology company focused on product intelligence, have joined forces to seamlessly connect the world’s life-cycle data, augment it with other information, and enable faster, distributed collaboration for product sustainability professionals. From now on, large parts of GreenDelta’s OpenLCA data catalog, the world’s largest inventory of product life-cycle data, are available on Makersite’s cloud-based data platform. All data has been connected as extendable process flows, netting over 600,000 environmental impacts for over 20,000 industrial products and processes, mostly available as open data under a CC-BY license
To complete this task, the companies enabled a data exchange between GreenDelta’ s OpenLCA data catalogue, and Makersite’s data platform. Makersite enriches the LCA data with other information such as regulatory, chemical, and/or substance data. This allows product teams to model and analyze their products with criteria such as costs, regulations, and substance risks, throughout their supply chain.
Moreover, the data can be extended and improved upon by the community through an integrated peer-reviewed publishing workflow, comparable to GIT for software. Publication of data then becomes an ongoing and transparent process that is greatly accelerated. GreenDelta will support data governance together with other experts from the LCA community.
Today’s fragmented landscape of LCA databases, formats and software makes collaboration between LCA experts and product teams disjointed and complex. Now, with data easily accessible in the cloud, in an intuitive analytical interface, the process is transparent, faster, and more cohesive.
While Makersite is open by default, confidential data can remain so. Calculations are done using open as well as third-party commercial data to ensure dependable results. The ability to compute across private and public data, while protecting intellectual property at a granular level, removes an important barrier to supply chain collaboration on environmental performance of products. Now, buyers and sellers can calculate footprints easily and reliably using the same background models and methods, without having to reveal confidential information. That way data is comparable and reliable, without conflicting interests.
Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA) is the primary, internationally recognized technique to assess environmental impacts of economic activity. It is used to support product-, process- or building design, in education, for labeling of product declarations, in waste management or pollution studies. LCA procedures are part of the ISO 14000 environmental management standards.
“The Makersite platform takes openLCA data to the next level” says Andreas Ciroth, MD of GreenDelta. “Open data and the cloud are great catalysts for shared progress. The life-cycle community can now benefit from these possibilities.”
“Pulling connected modeling data into the design stage is paramount for product development teams. It reduces the total development cycle and extends the use of lifecycle data into other domains and across the supply chain” says Neil D’Souza, Makersite’s CTO.
GreenDelta has over 20-years of experience inventorying data for life-cycle-based assessments. They develop OpenLCA, the world leading, open source and high-performance life cycle and sustainability assessment software, and provide, with OpenLCA Nexus, the world’s largest compilation of data for an environmental and social assessment of products.
Makersite is a data platform that empowers teams to make, buy and sell great products. It is the largest database on how products are made and their uses, costs, risks, and impacts. Product teams use it to innovate faster, buy smarter and be sustainable.
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