What is it?

Is a methodology to assess the environmental impact associated with all stages of a building product life. This starts from raw material extraction, transport, processing, manufacture, distribution, use, repair, maintenance and disposal.

What is it for?


The purpose of a life cycle analysis in the construction industry is to make informed decisions with the consideration of the whole life of the product. This includes from extraction, to production, usage up to recycling and disposal. In comparison to standard practice that normally only looks at product selection based on initial investment cost.

In BREEAM® assessments reference should be made to the Green Guide to Specifications, which is available online. Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) which comply with EN 15804 can also score point in BREEAM assessments.

In LEED® v4, the Life Cycle Analysis of construction products is assessed under the Materials and Resources category as follows:

  • Building life-cycle impact reduction.
  • Building Product Disclosure and Optimization - Environmental Product Declarations EPDs.
  • Building Product Disclosure and Optimization - Sourcing of Raw Materials.
  • Building Product Disclosure and Optimization – Material Ingredients.


A lifecycle assessment should comply with Industry Standard methodologies and verification ideally via independent assessors. Some of this standards and methodologies are:

  • ISO 14025.
  • ISO 14040.
  • ISO 14044.
  • EN 15804.
  • ISO 21930.
  • Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Sustainability Report.
  • Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises.
  • U.N. Global Compact: Communication of Progress.
  • ISO 26000: 2010 Guidance on Social Responsibility.
  • Health Product Declaration Open Standard.
  • Cradle to Cradle.
  • Declare.
  • REACH.
  • GreenScreen v1.2. Benchmark.