Methods for qualification of sustainability criteria

This WP aims to develop methods related to life cycle assessment (LCA) as well as for tracking and accounting of carbon. These are specific method developments that can often be embedded to SIA tools (WP 1) and they are important for the business applications (WP 3). LCA studies in the forest and wood sector so far have focused on relatively straightforward production environments. In cases of industries with a wide range of highly variable products, such as the furniture industries, LCA methodology needs to be adjusted in order to assess these complex systems. According to this, new approaches and their implementation are addressed in the first WP study. The second study of the WP combines and applies LCA methodology, systems analysis, cost accounting, ecosystem research as well as multi-criteria analysis to assess sustainability of intensified fuel wood harvesting with special attention on biodiversity in forest stands.
The third and fourth studies of this WP focus on estimating carbon effects of wood products and mitigation options through innovative use of wood products. While in the third study material flow analysis, carbon accounting as well as scenario analysis are applied to quantify carbon in wood products and to compare carbon mitigation strategies, the fourth study assesses carbon mitigation strategies based on a biogeochemical simulation model. Therefore the physiological based forest growth model gets a wood product model extension that allows for modelling of carbon mitigation effects of different wood product utilisation options.
Hence, this WP strives to enhance LCA methodology with regard to functional units and the allocation procedures as well as carbon accounting methodologies based on complementary application of system analyses, principles of thermodynamics, optimisation routines, scenario analyses as well as decision theory.