- LCA is the most common method used for quantifying the environmental impacts and resource use throughout the entire life cycle of a product or service.
- It comprises four stages: goal and scope definition, allocations of inputs and outputs to stages of the lifecycle, assessment of impacts, and the interpretation of results.
- LCA of agricultural products is difficult and uncertain.
- Carbon footprinting is based on the LCA approach but focuses only on greenhouse gas emissions.
- LCAs have historically focussed on environmental impacts, but are increasingly incorporating societal considerations.
- LCA is an extremely useful tool but cannot by itself indicate the sustainability of a product or process.