Purpose and development of the BP LCI

The purpose of the BP LCI is to provide the Australian building and construction industry with two fundamental building blocks required to undertake a life cycle assessment of a building or structure

The purpose of the BP LCI is to provide the Australian building and construction industry with two fundamental building blocks required to undertake a life cycle assessment of a building or structure :

  1. Methodology – the recommended Australian methods for measuring and reporting the environmental impact of building products and using this data for LCA.
  2. Database – the generic average (baseline) life cycle inventory data for Australian building and construction materials and products required to conduct a life cycle assessment of a building or structure.

In developing the LCI, BPIC has recognised three basic facts:

  1. Building products and buildings have a significant impact on the environment (locally and globally). The Australian building industry needs a nationally consistent and comprehensive basis for measuring and reporting the environmental impact of building products.
  2. The internationally accepted basis for the environmental assessment of buildings and structures is life cycle assessment (LCA). The internationally recognised standards for LCI and LCA are provided through international stanards (ISO).
  3. LCA work requires the use of recognised methods and measures of the environmental impact of building materials. The fundamental purpose of the BP LCI is to provide an Australian database that reflects Australian conditions and environmental priorities. An inventory or database of Australian life cycle environmental impacts aims to supports conducting LCA work for projects undertaken in Australia. The BP LCI provides information on key building products sectors available in Australia.

BPIC set three fundamental requirements for the development of the BP LCI:

  1. The methodology provides a comprehensive and nationally consistent way to measure the environmental impact of building products within and across product categories – a level playing field for environmental assessment.
  2. The use of data and methods be derived from independent and authoritative sources.
  3. The process be undertaken in compliance with internationally recognised methods.

The BP LCI has been made available to encourage the building industry to adopt nationally consistent and scientifically validated methods of environmental assessment.

BP LCI enables:

  • Manufacturers of building products to measure, report and improve the environmental impact of their products,
  • Building product users to assess the environmental impact of the these products in their buildings,
  • LCA Tool suppliers to develop industry accepted LCA tools for building design and operation,
  • Buildings rating organisations to develop LCA based assessments and credits, and
  • Carbon assessors to develop industry accepted Scope III carbon assessments for building products and buildings