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Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a methodology used for assessing the environmental impacts associated with products throughout their life cycle. Many impacts are accounted for within the LCA framework, such as air & water pollutants and global warming. However, biodiversity impacts have received little attention. For example, LCAs on Palm Oil plantations in the tropics might indicate there are positive greenhouse outcomes because of biofuel production, but at present LCA does not have a method to incorporate potential biodiversity impacts associated with the loss of tropical forest.

Forest and Wood Products Australia are funding a project team including ecologists and LCA practitioners from New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI), University of Wollongong and University of Tasmania, to test a semi-quantitative methodology for estimating biodiversity impacts for inclusion in LCA (click for pdf) . One of the key steps is identifying the factors and concepts that should be included in estimating biodiversity impacts.  We are seeking the input of ecologists with a short survey, which will take no more than 5 – 10 minutes to complete.  Any answers you provide are completely anonymous. If you would like to find out more information about this project please contact Dr Perpetua Turner (Perpetua.Turner@utas.edu.au).

To start the survey please click here or visit https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Biodiversity_in_LCA.

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