GaBi Solutions

Eco-Indicator 95

Description of the Eco-Indicator 95 Method

 

Description

The Eco-Indicator 95 method according to Goedkoop represents one of the further developments of the Environmental-Theme-Method. It is based on the balance of facts and the partial stages of classification and characterisation.

The method uses the evaluation which is in line with the Distance-to-Target method, based on weighting and reduction factors of Dutch environmental policy. The actual facts are not directly evaluated, instead the facts are aligned in two stages with an estimation of the effect, and the resulting data is then weighted:

 

Classification: During the first stage the incoming data is grouped according to the environmental effect, thereby creating what are known as categories of effect.

 

Characterisation: In each category of effect one input is selected as a reference substance, e.g. GWP of CO2 equals 1, whilst the other materials of these effect categories (e.g. CFC, CH4, N2O) show a fixed value which expresses the GWP relative to CO2.

 

Weighting of the categories of effect take place in two stages: First, and with the help of the damage functions, the types of damage caused by the different categories of effect on a particular protected product are compared to each other and were added. After this the damage to the different types of protected goods is weighted. This first weighting must be carried out based on a social evaluation process. In the Eco-Indicator 95 method Goedkoop specifies e.g. that 1 death per 1000000 inhabitants is equal to 5% surface loss of an intact Eco-system.

 

When selecting the categories of effect for the Eco-Indicator 95, it had to be considered that a comparison of effects is only possible between those categories of effect which cause comparable damage.

 

To summarize the Eco-Indicator 95 method, a top down approach is used. Starting with the definition of the term "environment" or the indication "eco" and the way the weighting problem is solved. Within a next step, models are build to link the inventory result with the weighting procedure. This aims to present the LCA results on all levels, ranging form characterisation, to normalisation and weighting. On the top level the results can than be presented as a single score, the so called Eco-Indicator.

 

The EI‘95 therefore looks like this:

 

Normalisation and evaluation with Eco-Indicator 95

 

This documentation deals with the implementation of the Eco-Indicator 95 (EI’95) in GaBi.

 

In addition to the standard impact categories that are included in GaBi, additional categories were added for normalisation and evaluation in accordance with Eco-Indicator 95, which were marked with "(EI’95)" in the GaBi database. The additional impact categories are as follows:
      -          Winter smog (EI’95) in kg SO2- equivalent
      -          Pesticides (EI’95) in kg active ingredient
      -          Heavy metals (EI’95) in kg Pb- equivalent
      -          Carcinogenic substances (EI’95) in kg PAH- equivalent

 

These impact categories are described in the literature listed below. The equivalent values for individual emissions can be read in GaBi in the appropriate "environmental quantities" fields and also in the literature listed below. After the classification with the impact categories the normalisation is done. With EI’95, the annual European contributions per inhabitant for the impact category are taken for normalisation. The normalised results according to EI’95 can be evaluated in a further step.

 

Literature

 

[1]
Goedkoop, M.: The Eco-Indicator 95. RIVM Report 9523, Bilthofen 1995

[2]
Goedkoop, M.: The Eco-Indicator 95, Manual for Designers, NOH Report 9524, Update 11.1996

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