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Life Cycle Approach

Cost Savings

Life cycle analysis can result in long-term cost savings by looking beyond the initial purchase price to consider costs incurred during use and disposal.

Materials and resources all have environmental, social and economic impacts beyond just their "use" phase in a project. For a material, impacts occur during harvest or extraction of raw materials, manufacturing, packaging, transporting, installing, using and ultimately discarding (or hopefully reusing or recycling). Similarly, financial costs arise not only during the initial purchase, but also with installation, operation and maintenance, training, removal and disposal. Analyzing these environmental impacts and financial costs over the entire life span of the product or material is what is known as a Life Cycle Approach.

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) aims to quantify the environmental impacts, that arise from material inputs and outputs, such as energy use or air emissions, over a product’s entire life cycle to assist consumers in making decisions that will benefit the environment.

For more information regarding LCA, continue reading one of the following topics:

Life Cycle Costing (LCC)

Life Cycle Costing (LCC) aims to quantify the financial impact of a particular product over its entire life cycle to assist consumers in making decisions that will save them money over the long term.

The Sustainable Facilities Tool allows you to compare materials with regard to life cycle costs and other environmental criteria by following the green dots and clicking "compare materials" in the Explore Section.