<  Back to the Polytechnique Montréal portal

Hybridization of complete PLCA and MRIO databases for a comprehensive product system coverage

Maxime Agez, Richard Wood, Manuele Margni, Anders H. Strømman, Réjean Samson and Guillaume Majeau-Bettez

Article (2020)

Open Access document in PolyPublie
Open Access to the full text of this document
Accepted Version
Terms of Use: All rights reserved
Download (852kB)
Show abstract
Hide abstract


Process‐based Life Cycle Assessments (PLCA) rely on detailed descriptions of extensive value chains and their associated exchanges with the environment, but major data gaps limit the completeness of these system descriptions and lead to truncations in inventories and underestimations of impacts. Hybrid Life Cycle Assessments (HLCA) aim to combine the strength of PLCA and Environmentally Extended Input Output (EEIO) analysis to obtain more specific and complete system descriptions. Currently, however, most HLCAs only remediate truncation of processes that are specific to each case study (foreground processes), and these processes are then linked to (truncated) generic background processes from a non‐hybridized PLCA database. A hybrid PLCA‐EEIO database is therefore required to completely solve the truncation problems of PLCA and thus obtain a comprehensive product system coverage. This paper describes the construction of such a database using pyLCAIO, a novel framework and open‐source software enabling the streamlined hybridization of entire PLCA and EEIO databases. We applied this framework to the PLCA database Ecoinvent3.5 and the multiregional EEIO database EXIOBASE 3. Thanks to the correction for truncation in this new hybrid database, the median and average life cycle global warming potential (GWP) of its processes increased by 7% and 14%, respectively. These corrections only reflect the truncations that could be readily identified and estimated in a semi‐automated manner; and we anticipate that further database integration should lead to higher levels of correction in the future.

Uncontrolled Keywords

Database; Environmentally extended input output (EEIO) analysis; Hybrid life‐cycle assessment; Process‐based life cycle assessments (PLCA); Software; Truncation error

Subjects: 1500 Environmental engineering > 1500 Environmental engineering
1600 Industrial engineering > 1600 Industrial engineering
1600 Industrial engineering > 1602 Management information systems
Department: Department of Chemical Engineering
Department of Mathematics and Industrial Engineering
Research Center: CIRAIG - International Reference Centre for the Life Cycle of Products, Processes and Services
Funders: International Chair in Life Cycle Assessment
PolyPublie URL: https://publications.polymtl.ca/5487/
Journal Title: Journal of Industrial Ecology (vol. 24, no. 4)
Publisher: Wiley
DOI: 10.1111/jiec.12979
Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/jiec.12979
Date Deposited: 13 Nov 2020 11:49
Last Modified: 11 May 2023 17:10
Cite in APA 7: Agez, M., Wood, R., Margni, M., Strømman, A. H., Samson, R., & Majeau-Bettez, G. (2020). Hybridization of complete PLCA and MRIO databases for a comprehensive product system coverage. Journal of Industrial Ecology, 24(4), 774-790. https://doi.org/10.1111/jiec.12979


Total downloads

Downloads per month in the last year

Origin of downloads


Repository Staff Only

View Item View Item