Sustainability Life Cycle Assessment (SLCA)


Sustainable Life Cycle Assessment (SLCA) is a tool for a synthetic, clear, easy-to-understand and easy-to-communicate evaluation on the level of sustainability that a particular product involves.

SLCA can be described as an assessment tool and an accompanying process that gives you a strategic overview of the full scope of social and ecological sustainability at the product level. The process then helps to create plans for how to successfully bridge the sustainability gap.

The 10 steps of the Sustainable Life Cycle:

  • setting goal and scope
  • creating a shared definition of the sustainable product system
  • defining the system boundaries and life cycle scenario for the sustainability assessment
  • conducting an inventory analysis of the life cycle
  • sustainability assessment – Using the sustainability principles to assess sustainability strengths and weaknesses
  • analysis & synthesis of results – Identifying key impact areas
  • brainstorming possible solutions
  • prioritising solutions
  • creating an innovation roadmap
  • measuring and reporting progress (ongoing)

All these aspects are very important for producing sustainable interchanges.

NODES strategic objectiveContribution
Enhance accessibility and integration 0
Enhance intermodality 0
Enhance liveability 0
Increase safety and security conditions 0
Increase economic viability and costs efficiency ++
Stimulate local economy +
Increase environmental efficiency ++
Increase energy efficiency ++

Good practice

The Crossrail project in London has a sustainability strategy and has life cycle assessment to make green building choices. The main argument for doing this was the environmental impact of constructions.

The most important result of using this was that environmental information was made more transparent and that it was used in the decision-making process.

Life cycle assessment in support of sustainable transportation.


Potential interchange performance improvement

  • quicker and cheaper than a full life cycle analysis (LCA)
  • reveals hot-spots over the complete life cycle of any product
  • helps product teams to think systemically about a product and provides a way to judge whether or not an innovation is truly more   sustainable or not
  • communicates sustainability impacts to non-experts
  • depth of assessment can be adjusted, allowing the process to be designed to suit your budget and timeframes
  • underpinned by researched and well-tested methods


  • this tool needs an expert or trained team, which may involve training costs
  • an alternative is to request help from consultants, either completely or as part of an easier review process