Life cycle assessment (LCA)

We enable you to develop a deeper knowledge of your products and services in comparison to others on the market and show you where the most effective changes can be made to improve sustainability. 

Our circular economy expertise

A streamlined LCA of the top selling or most representative product(s) will quickly reveal the 'hot spots' in the product life-cycle. Interventions can then be assessed for their ability to reduce the most significant uses of energy, water and raw materials, and associated cost savings can be identified.

In addition to ISO 14040 compliant studies, Ricardo can conduct LCA studies which align to the European Commission’s recommended Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) methodology and related existing category rules.

If a particular product or process intervention is being considered, LCA is the best way to ensure that the change will not introduce unexpected environmental impacts.

Many organisations are now using lifecycle thinking to go beyond environmental impacts and consider the social and financial impacts of their products. Ricardo can tailor a plan to suit your organisation, whether you are just starting to investigate social impacts, or already have data and systems in place and want to go further.

A high-level assessment of the overall business may reveal an unexpected environmental impact profile that, in turn, leads to new directions in business development.

The data and analysis following an LCA study can be used to identify ‘hot spots’ and focus efforts when looking at resource efficiency (including water & energy) and to target and measure the success of circular economy thinking.

If you have already developed an LCA and intend to publish the results or use it to support marketing claims or comparative assertions, ISO 14044 requires that the LCA study undergoes a third-party critical review process prior to publication.  Ricardo has experienced LCA practitioners who can perform critical reviews according to best practice and international standards, either as an independent expert or as part of a review panel.

The results of a LCA can be communicated through a comprehensive LCA report or an EPD.  Ricardo is a corporate member of The International EPD System (IES) and members of our team are approved Individual Verifiers of IES, enabling us to provide a full EPD service. In addition we can support you by going beyond the EPD and provide expertise to manage and mitigate any risks identified. The EPD that we prepared for James Jones can be viewed here

Legislation surrounding green claims is increasing on a global scale and at the same time more accusations of greenwashing are hitting the headlines causing huge reputational damage to the companies involved. A product or comparison LCA can provide the evidence behind your green claims. Ricardo’s experts can help you to develop green claims for your products that are robust under scrutiny from legislators, consumers and investors.

Please get in touch to discuss how our in-depth life cycle assessments go beyond a basic service to add real value for your organisation.

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Life Cycle Assessment At Ricardo

Related capabilities

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Circular economy

Our experts can tailor plan to help your organisation benefit from a circular economy approach including market assessment, resource mapping, sustainable procurement, stakeholder engagement, sustainable packaging and more.

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Whether you are just starting to plan your journey to net zero, or already have a roadmap in place and want expertise to deliver your ambitions, Ricardo is here to help. We can support you with reducing Scope 1, Scope 2 and Scope 3 emissions.


Scope 3 emissions reduction

Your Scope 3 (or value chain) emissions can account for up to 90% of your organisation’s greenhouse gas impact. We can help you to tackle this traditionally difficult area through baselining, strategy development, target setting, supplier engagement, implementation and reporting.

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ESG and sustainability strategies

An ESG strategy will help you to understand and respond to the risk and opportunities that will impact your company’s success and long-term value creation. ESG reporting provides a snapshot of the business’s impact in these three areas for investors, customers and wider stakeholders. 

Life cycle assessment (LCA)


This service is offered within the following sectors.

Further insights

How to use life cycle assessment to reduce your scope 3 carbon emissions

Read webinar

Ricardo commissioned to define a single harmonised European life cycle assessment standard for zero emission vehicles and batteries

Read press release

Empowering battery supply chain sustainability

Read case study

Life cycle assessment (LCA) Resources

Why life cycle assessment is crucial for sustainable product and technology development

Read blog

A tale of two soups – using life cycle assessment to identify environmental impact hotspots

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Why social life cycle assessment (SLCA) has become an essential tool for forward-looking organisations

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Helping local authorities deliver an effective response to the climate emergency

Read brochure

Meet the experts

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Sam Hinton

Head of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)

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