Introduction to “Life Cycle Inventory Analysis
Kapitel i bok, 2021

This chapter introduces the life cycle inventory (LCI) analysis – the topic of this volume. A brief history of the concept is provided, including its procedure according to different standards and guidance books. The LCI analysis phase of the life cycle assessment (LCA) framework has remained relatively constant over the years in terms of role and procedural steps. Currently, the LCI analysis is situated in between the goal and scope definition phase and the life cycle impact assessment phase in the LCA framework, although it is interconnected also with the interpretation phase. Central concepts in LCI analysis are defined, including product system, process, flow, functional unit, and system boundary. Four important steps of LCI analysis are outlined: constructing a flow chart, gathering data, conducting calculations, as well as interpreting results and drawing conclusions. The focus is on the process LCA approach, which is the most common in LCA practice. Environmentally-extended input-output analysis is also described briefly. Finally, an overview of the other chapters of this volume and their relevance to the topic of LCI analysis is provided.

Life cycle assessment (LCA)

Environmentally-extended input-output analysis


Data gathering

Life cycle inventory analysis (LCI)


Life cycle impact assessment


Rickard Arvidsson

Chalmers, Teknikens ekonomi och organisation, Environmental Systems Analysis

Andreas Ciroth

GreenDelta GmbH

Life Cycle Inventory Analysis: Methods and Data

978-3-030-62269-5 (ISBN)






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