Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application

 
Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Hotspots Analysis
An overarching methodological
framework and guidance for
product and sector level application
Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
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Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Hotspots Analysis
An overarching methodological
framework and guidance for
product and sector level application
Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Acknowledgements

    Publisher
    This document has been published by the UN Environment, Economy Division with the support of
    WRAP.

    Supervision
    Llorenç Milà i Canals (UN Environment, Economy Division),
    Feng Wang (UN Environment, Economy Division)
    Bettina Heller (UN Environment, Economy Division)

    Authors
    Mark Barthel (3Keel LLP – Flagship project co-chair)
    Jim Fava (Anthesis – Flagship project co-chair)
    Keith James (WRAP)
    Alex Hardwick (thinkstep)
    Sofia Khan (EY LLP, India)

    Contributors and reviewers (in alphabetical order)
    Curtis Harnanan (Anthesis)
    Giorgio Bagordo (WRAP)
    Mary Ann Curran (BAMAC)
    Sanjeevan Bajaj (FICCI)

    Design and layout
    Thad Mermer

                      We gratefully acknowledge the support of:

                         This report is supported by the International
                        Climate Initiative (IKI). The Federal Ministry for
                      the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building
                           and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) supports this
                       initiative on the basis of a decision adopted by
                                    the German Bundestag.

2         Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Table of Contents

       Acknowledgements	                                                                                           2
       List of figures and tables	                                                                                 6
       Glossary of terms	                                                                                          7
       Executive summary 	                                                                                         9

1.     INTRODUCTION	                                                                                              12
       1.1 About the project / study	                                                                             13
       1.2 Audience for this methodological framework and required skill set	                                     14
       1.3 Guiding principles	                                                                                    15

2.     HOTSPOTS ANALYSIS: GENERAL STEP-BY-STEP PROCESS	                                                           16
       Step 1	                                                                                                    19
           Output	                                                                                                19
           Key actions	                                                                                           19
           More detail	                                                                                           19
              Case Study 1: Product Sustainability Forum	                                                         21
              Case Study 2: Stakeholder identification within ISO14001: 2015 and the International
              Finance Corporation (IFC)	                                                                          26

       Step 2	                                                                                                    28
           Output 	                                                                                               28
           Key actions	                                                                                           28
           More detail	                                                                           28
              Case Study 3: Data gathering for a sector. The American Public Gardens Association.	30
              Case Study 4: European Commission- UN Environment Eco-Innovation Project	           31

       Step 3	                                                                                                    32
           Output 	                                                                                               32
           Key actions 	                                                                                          32
           More detail	                                                                             32
              Case study 5: Identifying and Validating Hotspots through the EU Environmental Footprint
              Initiative and WRAP Courtauld 2025 	                                                  34

       Step 4	                                                                                                    35
           Output	                                                                                                35
           Key actions 	                                                                                          35
           More detail	                                                                                           35
              Case Study 6: Food and Drink Products 	                                                             36

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application        3
Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Step 5	                                                                                                    38
            Output	                                                                                                  38
            Key actions 	                                                                                            38
            More details	                                                                                            38
               Case Study 7: Prioritising actions through ISO14001: 2015                                              40
               Case Study 8: Prioritizing Value Chain Interventions	                                                 40
         Step 6	                                                                                                    41
            Output 	                                                                                                 41
            Key actions	                                                                                             41
            More detail	                                                                                             41
               Case Study 9: Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) and the Water
               Quality Association (WQA)	                                                                            42
         Step 7	                                                                                                    43
            Output	                                                                                                  43
            Key actions	                                                                                             43
            More detail	                                                                      43
               Case Study 10: Opportunity, Communication and Validation through Collaboration	44
         Step 8	                                                                                                    47
            Output	                                                                                                  47
            Key actions	                                                                                             47
            More details	                                                                                            47
               Case Study 11: International Aluminium Institute	                                                     49

    3.   HOTSPOTS ANALYSIS: APPLICATIONS AND LIMITATIONS, SECTOR
         AND PRODUCT GUIDANCE WITH CASE STUDIES	               50
         3.1 Hotspots Analysis applications and limitations	                                                        51
         3.2 Sector level supplementary guidance 	                                                                  52
            Step 1: Define, clarify and solicit agreement of the goal and scope	                                     52
            Step 2: Gather data, seek expert insight, knowledge building and analysis	                               52
            Step 4: Respond to data and stakeholder gaps	                                                            53
            Step 5: Identify and prioritize actions 	                                                                53

         3.3 AHAM: sector case study	                                                                               54
            Step 1: Define, clarify and solicit agreement of the goal and scope	                                     54
            Step 2: Gather data, seek expert insight, knowledge building and analysis	                               58
            Step 3: Identify and validate hotspots	                                                                  58
            Step 4: Respond to data and stakeholder gaps	                                                            60
            Step 5: Identify and prioritize actions	                                                                 60
            Step 6: Review initial findings	                                                                         61
            Step 7: Presentation and communication	                                                                  61
            Step 8: Revisit hotspots and actions identified	                                                         62

4        Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
3.4 Product level supplementary guidance 	                                                                 63
           Step 1: Define, clarify and solicit agreement of the goal and scope	                                   63
           Step 2: Gather data, seek expert insight, knowledge building and analysis	                             63
           Step 5: Identify and prioritize actions 	                                                              63

       3.5 The Sustainability Consortium: product case study	                                                     64
           1. Define the product category (Hotspots Methodology Step 1)	                                          64
           2. Review scientific sources (Hotspots Methodology Step 2)	                                            65
           3. Research hotspots and 5. Evaluate the evidence (Hotspots Methodology Step 3 & 4)	65
           4. Research improvement Opportunities (Hotspots Methodology Step 5)	                                   67
           5. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)	                                                                  67
           6. Multi-stakeholder review (Hotspots Methodology Step 6)	                                             67
           7. Publish the toolkit (Hotspots Methodology Step 7)	                                                  67
           8. Update and revise the toolkit (Hotspots Methodology Step 8)	                                        67

4.     ANNEXES	                                                                                                   68
       ANNEX 1: Background and context to Hotspots Analysis	                                                      69
           A1.1 About Hotspots Analysis	                                                                          69
           A1.2 Distinctions between Hotspots Analysis and Life Cycle Assessment	                                 69
           A1.3 Benefits of Hotspots Analysis	                                                                    70
           A1.4 Hotspots Analysis and the Sustainable Development Goals	                                          70
           A1.5 Related techniques and tools for assessment	                                                      71

       ANNEX 2: Workshops and webinars organized by the Project Group 	                                           73

       ANNEX 3: Methodology used for the Phase 1 study	                                                           74
                Step 1: Shortlisting and screening of existing hotspots analysis methodologies for
                         preliminary selection	                                                                   74
                Step 2: Further review of selected methodologies for secondary selection	                         74
                Step 3: In-depth assessment and segmentation of selected methodologies	                           74
                Key Insights from the study	                                                                      77
                Key stakeholder feedback	                                                                         77
                Versatility and flexibility of hotspots analysis	                                                 78

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application        5
Hotspots Analysis An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
List of figures and tables

    Figures

    Figure ES1 Eight key steps common to Hotspots Analysis                                                             10
    Figure 1 Methodological Framework process steps                                                                    17
    Figure 2 Defining, clarifying and soliciting agreement of the goal and scope                                       19
    Figure 3 Example boundary diagram – product category level study                                                   20
    Figure 4 Example boundary diagram – sector level level study                                                       20
    Figure 5 Common sources of data or information used in hotspots analysis                                           24
    Figure 6 Options for identifying hotspots                                                                          33
    Figure 7 Moving from a long list of actions to a short list                                                        39
    Figure 8 Principles of communication & visualisation of results from a hotspots analysis study                     44
    Figure 9 Correlation between back fat and weight                                                                   44
    Figure 10 Example Study Boundary Diagram – sector activity level                                                   53
    Figure 11 Key elements of the stakeholder engagement process undertaken by AHAM                                    56
    Figure 12 Translating results from life cycle screening, inputs from stakeholders
              and guiding principles into a standard                                                                   56
    Figure 13 AHAM’s process for the identification and validation of hotspots                                         59
    Figure 14 The multi-attribute sustainability certification available for download                                  61
    Figure 15 Example certificate of compliance                                                                        62
    Figure 16 Example Study Boundary Diagram – product category level                                                  63
    Figure 17 Overview of TSC’s development process                                                                    64
    Figure 18 Application of Hotspots analysis: different data sources and example study outputs                       69
    Figure 19 UN Sustainable Development Goals                                                                         70

    Tables
    Table 1 Methodological steps in Hotspots Analysis and associated key actions                                       18
    Table 2 The split of life cycle stages in 3 different approaches                                                   29
    Table 3 Sustainability issues covered in the APGA on-line survey                                                   30
    Table 4 Validating and prioritizing hotspots                                                                       59
    Table 5 TSC Source Quality Matrix                                                                                  65
    Table 6 TSC’s Impact Classification                                                                                66
    Table 7 Summary of findings of the shortlisted HSA Methodologies                                                   75

6          Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Glossary of terms

Characterisation model: A model which describes              Life Cycle Thinking: Life Cycle Thinking (LCT)
the relationship between individual data points              is about going beyond the traditional focus on
sometimes referred to as “inventory data” (e.g.,             production site and manufacturing processes
consumption of resources, emissions, wastes,                 to include environmental, social and economic
employment data, economic costs) and an impact               impacts of a product over its entire life cycle.
or indicator (e.g., climate change, biodiversity, staff
training and education, households in poverty).              Methodological Framework: A Methodological
The characterisation model yields characterisation           Framework outlines key steps that are common
factors that are used as multiplication factors to           to hotspots analysis at any scale of application
convert inventory data to a single indicator result.         (including but not limited to national, city,
                                                             sectoral, product category, product specific).
Data Quality: Characteristics of data such                   This framework is not a standard operating
as age, technological, geographical and                      procedure but is aimed at embedding a certain
temporal representativeness, specificity and                 level of consistency of approach to hotspots
comprehensiveness that determine their ability to            analysis, despite its application. This framework
satisfy stated requirements.                                 is also meant to be the basis for more specific
                                                             guidance that will be developed for various levels
Functional Unit: A measure of the function of the            of application.
studied system to which inputs and outputs can
be related.                                                  Normalisation: The process by which impact
                                                             assessment results are multiplied by factors that
Hotspot A life cycle stage, process or elementary            represent the overall impact per reference unit (e.g.,
flow which accounts for a significant proportion of          a country, an average citizen). Normalised results
the impact of the functional unit.                           express the relative shares of the impact(s) of the
                                                             hotspots analysis in terms of the total contributions
Hotspots Analysis: The rapid assimilation                    to each impact category per reference unit.
and analysis of a range of information sources,
including life cycle based studies, market, and              Sensitivity analysis: A technique to determine
scientific research, expert opinion and stakeholder          how different values of an independent variable
concerns. The outputs from this analysis can                 influence the results of a hotspots analysis. This can
then be used to identify and prioritise potential            be used to provide an assessment of confidence
actions around the most significant economic,                in the results, in this case that a hotspot has / has
environmental and social sustainability impacts or           not been identified.
benefits associated with a specific country, city,
industry sector, organization, product portfolio,            Shall, should and may: This Guidance uses
product category or individual product or service.           precise terminology and distinguishes between
Hotspots analysis is often used as a pre-cursor to           requirements and recommendations, (i.e.,
developing more detailed or granular sustainability          between the words ‘shall’, ‘should’ and ‘may’).
information.                                                 Terminology is based on ISO/TS 14072 and ISO
                                                             14044/ISO 14040, in that order. ‘Shall’ is only used
Life Cycle Assessment: Life Cycle Assessment                 when this strength of obligation is also required
(LCA) is a tool for the systematic evaluation of the         in the aforementioned standard documents,
environmental aspects of a product or service                while ‘should’ is used to identify recommended
system through all stages of its life cycle.                 elements that can be disregarded with proper
                                                             justification. Finally, ‘may’ is used for other allowed
                                                             elements or alternatives.

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application       7
Stakeholders: The term stakeholders covers                  Uncertainty analysis: A systematic procedure to
    anyone who has a direct or indirect interest in             quantify the uncertainty introduced in the results of
    the project or organization in question as they             a life cycle inventory analysis due to the cumulative
    can affect or are affected by the activities that           effects of model imprecision, input uncertainty and
    take place. Stakeholders include, amongst                   data variability (ISO14040:2006)
    others, employees, customers, suppliers,
    communities, shareholders, governmental and
    non-governmental organizations. The definition
    of key stakeholders may vary, however, in this
    guidance key stakeholders are considered to be:

    • Those most directly affected by the outcomes
      of the activities that take place. Other
      stakeholders would be those more indirectly
      affected by the outcomes or those whose
      interests define them as stakeholders, but who
      are not directly affected.
    • Those likely to be able to contribute positively
      throughout the process given their experience
      or previous involvement with the sector/
      product(s).
    • Those who may potentially be a hindrance to
      action if they are not satisfied with the outcomes
      of the process.

    Key stakeholders should be involved in the
    process at every stage, as opposed to a broader
    group of stakeholders who may be involved at a
    smaller number of defined points in the process
    where their input is relevant.

8          Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
Executive summary

The information age has led to a proliferation               However, there is not currently a common global
of content, ranging from the assimilation and                approach to hotspots analysis; nor has there been
analytical challenges associated with ‘big data’             any effort to gather or share best practice among
through to ever-expanding publication lists of               the organisations or initiatives currently developing
research and innovation findings. The major                  and using these methods. Nor is there any
challenge for businesses, policy makers, academic            accepted guidance on how to translate and apply
researchers and consumers is deciding where and              the results of hotspots analysis into meaningful
how to act in order to have the maximum impact.              sustainability information and insight for use by
For any action, a balance must be struck between             industry, governments and other stakeholders.
speed of response and pragmatism, and also the
need to be informed by reliable and trustworthy              This situation may result in a range of negative
science-based evidence.                                      impacts, including: a lack of consistency in
                                                             methodological approach, difficulties in comparing
A growing number of different analytical                     the results of hotspots studies, and the potential
disciplines are using a prioritization method                for conflicting sustainability information in the
called ‘hotspotting’, or ‘hotspots analysis’. It is          marketplace. Recognising this, the UNEP/SETAC
being used to filter and distil often large volumes          Life Cycle Initiative1 established a new Flagship
of information to identify and prioritise hotspots           Project (FSP 3a) to address these and other issues
for further investigation or action by industry,             in 2013.
governments and other stakeholders. This may
include piloting or implementing actions on the              The principal objectives of this Flagship Project are:
basis of the findings from the hotspots analysis.
                                                             1. To produce a common methodological
Hotspots analysis is being used around the world                framework and global guidance for sustainability
to address significant sustainability challenges by             hotspots analysis;
helping to provide focus in an era of information            2. To produce a protocol for the appropriate use
overload. Case studies are provided in this                     and communication of sustainability information
document.                                                       derived from hotspots analysis.

When applied to Life Cycle Assessment, the                   This document has been prepared in response to
benefits of hotspots analysis include ensuring:              the first of these objectives. The second objective
                                                             was addressed through the development of
• focus on priority issues (e.g., waste, water,              the hotspots analysis communication guidance
  materials of concern);                                     document titled “Communicating hotspots: The
• focus on the right life cycle stage (e.g., material        effective use of sustainability information to drive
  acquisition, manufacturing, use, end of life);             action and improve performance” (this can be
• focus on the right actors (e.g. producers,                 found on the WRAP website ). Both documents
  manufacturers, suppliers, retailers, customers,            have been prepared jointly with the Consumer
  government officials) to evaluate, influence and           Information Programme of the 10-Year Framework
  implement solutions;                                       of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and
                                                             Production (10YFP CI-SCP2) , which supports
• implications of trade-offs are understood; and,
                                                             the provision of quality information on goods and
• resources (e.g. time, money) can be effectively            services to engage consumers in sustainable
  allocated to actions.                                      consumption.
                                                             1   http://lifecycleinitiative.org
                                                             2   http://www.scpclearinghouse.org/consumer-information-scp

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application            9
The     methodological        framework     provides         opportunity for improvement against an impact
     information useful to those wishing to commission            occurs, rather than communicating a precisely
     or carry out a hotspots analysis in a life cycle             quantified current impact. Other organisations
     context. However as a framework, rather than                 (e.g. trade associations) may wish to offer more
     a standard, it provides a degree of flexibility to           specific guidance on implementing hotspots
     enable hotspots analysis to be used in different             analysis for their own sectors based upon this
     circumstances. The specific directions given for             framework.
     varying situations (e.g. assessment of hotspots
     for products, sectors) underscore that there is no           This methodological framework aims to support
     ‘one-size-fits-all’ application of hotspots analysis.        those wishing to commission, conduct or use
     The framework aims to be equally applicable to               hotspots analysis studies – including stakeholders
     businesses, governments and other organisations              of the 10YFP – in their efforts to prioritize their
     (e.g. NGOs and academic institutions) as well as             actions and accelerate a shift towards Sustainable
     individual researchers.                                      Consumption and Production (SCP). The audience
                                                                  for the use of this framework includes practitioners
     It aims to provide a consistent approach to hotspots         and technical experts, stakeholders, developers,
     analysis. As an action-oriented methodology, the             and participants in the development of hotspots
     key outcome is to identify where the greatest                analysis methodology.

                                                 1         Define Goal
                                                           and Scope

                 8                                                               2
                           Review and                                                       Gather data,
                         revisit hotspots                                                   seek expert
                             analysis                                                         insight

      7                                                                                      3
                Present and
                                                          Iterative                                      Identify and
              communicate to a
                                                                                                      validate hotspots
               wider audience                             process

                 6
                      Review and validate

                                                                                 4
                                                                                         Respond to data
                       findings with key
                                                                                         and stakeholder
                       stakeholders and
                                                                                              gaps
                            experts

                                                 5           Identify and
                                                          prioritize actions

     Figure ES1: Eight key steps common to Hotspots Analysis

10          Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
The skill set required to use this methodology does          This framework outlines the eight key steps that
vary depending on the role and type of expertise             are common to hotspots analysis (Figure ES1).
being brought to the identification process for the
hotspots analysis. However, it is expected that              The steps follow the Deming Cycle (Plan, Do,
users have:                                                  Check, Act); and like this cycle, hotspots analysis
                                                             is an iterative approach. Though the steps naturally
• some familiarity with life cycle thinking and/or           form a sequence, there will be a need to revisit
  value chain thinking and methods;                          steps in the process in order to refine the analysis
• a reasonable understanding of the quantitative             as it develops. For each step, the outputs and key
  and/or qualitative impacts relevant to the scope           actions are detailed, as well as case studies to
  of the hotspots analysis;                                  help frame each step.
• some knowledge of the interventions being
                                                             This methodological framework is also developed
  considered or taking place in relation to the
                                                             with a sustainability mind set. Hotspots analysis
  hotspots identified in the study;
                                                             methodologies typically use a life cycle thinking
• some experience of systems thinking and the                approach, while providing the flexibility to take
  ability to make linkages (lateral/holistic thinking);      into consideration quantitative and qualitative
• some experience of facilitating multi-                     data and information drawn from a range of
  stakeholder studies, including consensus                   sources (e.g. scientific research, market studies),
  building around study priorities and/or actions            and acknowledge the views and priorities of key
  to be taken to address hotspots; and,                      stakeholders involved in – or likely to be affected
• the ability to interpret and understand the                by – the findings from a study. This allows
  findings from a hotspots analysis study and                for the results of the hotspots analysis to be
  use this information to make well-informed                 comprehensive and collaborative. It also allows for
  decisions about required actions.                          a focus on action-orientated approaches which
                                                             reflect the hotspots identified, and seeks to find
For those less familiar with these issues,                   the best ways to address them.
the methodological framework provides the
information, terminology and insights required               The end of the report presents two supplementary
to engage specialists or external experts as                 guidance modules which address issues specific
appropriate.                                                 to hotspots analysis carried out at a product and
                                                             a sector level. They cover points of differentiation
                                                             which apply to individual steps, and should
                                                             be used in conjunction with the overarching
                                                             methodological framework.

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application    11
1. Introduction

12   Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
1.1 About the project / study

The project constitutes the second phase                           from around the world. For an overview of the
of the Life Cycle Initiative Flagship Project                      methodology used for the Phase 1 study and a
3a - ‘Hotspots Analysis and Sustainability                         summary of the findings of the shortlisted Hotspots
Information’ and contributes to the work plan of                   Analysis Methodologies see Annex 3.
the Consumer Information Programme of the 10
Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable                        Phase 2 of the project, which began in March
Consumption and Production (10YFP). This report                    2016, builds on the research undertaken during
has been financed by the Life Cycle Initiative                     Phase 1 and seeks to create an overarching
and the project “Advancing and measuring                           methodological framework for hotspots analysis
sustainable consumption and production (SCP)                       with more detailed guidance on how to conduct
for a low-carbon economy in newly industrialised                   sector and product category hotspots analysis;
countries (Advance SCP)”. The Advance SCP                          and on the appropriate use and communication of
project is part of the International Climate Initiative            sustainability information derived from these two
(IKI). The Federal Ministry for the Environment,                   levels of application. It should also be noted that
Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety                   Phase 2 started with an assessment of a further
(BMUB) supports this initiative on the basis of a                  six hotspots analysis methodologies identified
decision adopted by the German Bundestag.                          after Phase 1 was completed.

Phase 13 of the project, which occurred                            Ultimately Phase 2 has produced:
between May and December 2014, involved the
identification and mapping of existing hotspots                    • A common methodological framework and
studies, initiatives, methodologies and tools                        global guidance for sustainability hotspots
                                                                     analysis;
3 http://www.lifecycleinitiative.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/   • A protocol (guidance) for the appropriate use
UNEP-Hotspots-Mapping-Project-Final-Report-Phase-1.pdf
                                                                     and communication of sustainability information
                                                                     derived from hotspots analysis.

  W
              hile a tool on ‘hotspots analysis’                   These tools will be used to evaluate and, if possible,
              can be helpful in many regards,                      implement a range of options to bring together the
              there is currently no common global                  findings from existing hotspots studies to provide
  approach to hotspots analysis; nor has there                     a richer, global picture of sustainability hotspots in
  been any effort to bring together or share                       the economy and society.
  best practice amongst those organisations or
  initiatives currently developing these methods.
  Nor do any accepted principles or guidance
  exist on how to translate and apply the results
  of this hotspots analysis into meaningful
  sustainability information and insight for use by
  industry, governments and other stakeholders.
  Source: The International Life Cycle Board of the Life Cycle
  Initiative

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application            13
1.2 Audience for this methodological
     framework and required skill set
     This Methodological Framework aims to support               Skill Set
     those wishing to commission, conduct or use
     hotspots analysis studies, including the support            The skill set of the users of this methodological
     of stakeholders of the 10YFP in their efforts to            framework would vary depending on their role
     prioritize their actions to accelerate a shift towards      and type of expertise they bring to the hotspots
     Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP);               analysis identification process. However, it is
     the audience for the use of this framework includes         expected that users have:
     practitioners and technical experts, stakeholders,
     developers and participants of hotspots analysis            • Some familiarity with life cycle thinking and/or
     methodology development. This could include the               value chain thinking and methods;
     following:                                                  • A reasonable understanding of the quantitative
                                                                   and/or qualitative impacts relevant to the scope
     • Chief   Sustainability    Officers, company                 of the hotspots analysis (for all or some of the
       sustainability/technical team members and                   life cycle or value chain phases; key activities
       senior decision-makers (e.g., enterprise risk               or processes relevant to the sector or product
       management, innovation managers) who                        category in question);
       are seeking to focus their resources on key               • Some knowledge of some of the interventions
       sustainability issues                                       being considered or taking place in relation to
     • Senior     officials of     non-governmental                the hotspots identified in the study, in order
       organizations (NGOs) working specifically in                to help identify and prioritise any interventions
       the area of hotspots analysis and their expert              or actions to address the hotspots identified
       team members                                                during the study;
     • Academics and researchers who work                        • Some experience of systems thinking and the
       specifically on applied life cycle thinking,                ability to make linkages (lateral/holistic thinking);
       analysis and management approaches,                       • Some experience of facilitating multi-
       including hotspots analysis                                 stakeholder studies, including consensus
     • Public policy-makers and government officials               building around study priorities and the actions
       who are seeking to use hotspots analysis                    to be taken to address any hotspots identified;
       in evidence-based policy development and                    and
       implementation as a way of prioritising their             • The ability to interpret and understand the
       activities and resources                                    findings from a hotspots analysis study and
     • Civil society bodies, professional institutes and           use this information to make well-informed
       industry trade associations who want to use                 decisions about the actions to be taken.
       hotspots analysis to build consensus around
       an agreed set of priority hotspots and the                For those less familiar with these issues, the
       actions required to address them                          Methodological     Framework    provides   the
     • Subject matter experts and consultants who                information, terminology and insights required
       want to use hotspots analysis to support                  to engage specialists or external experts as
       relevant stakeholders and clients                         appropriate.

                                                                 For some background and context to hotspots
                                                                 analysis, including distinctions between Hotspots
                                                                 Analysis and Life Cycle Assessment, see Annex 1.

14          Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
1.3 Guiding principles

The design and application of this “overarching”             • Comprehensive: (range of metrics) The
Methodological Framework for conducting                        analysis should cover all relevant aspects of
hotspots analysis shall be guided by the principles            the life cycle relevant to the level of application
outlined below.                                                (e.g., sector, product) for a range of indicators
                                                               which may or may not be considered in
This Methodological framework shall provide                    traditional LCA approaches (e.g., biodiversity,
guidance enabling hotspots analysis to be:                     ethical concerns).

• Usable: The emphasis of hotspots analysis is               Whilst analysis of changes over time and updates
  providing information that can be acted upon.              to hotspots analyses shall be self-consistent, the
• Transparent: It must be clear what the purpose             methodological framework provides flexibility. As
  of the analysis is, what the data sources are,             comparison is not one of the purposes of hotspots
  how the analysis was undertaken and how                    analysis, different studies based on the same
  the conclusions were reached. Confidentiality              functional unit may take different approaches
  requirements and any gaps in the evidence                  depending on the purpose of each study and
  should be identified.                                      specific circumstances (e.g., availability of data).
• Suitably/appropriately robust: The analysis                Additionally, whilst developing this methodological
  must be sufficiently robust to support the                 framework, it was realised that communication of
  decisions that will be made based upon it.                 hotspots analysis also need a guidance. Thus,
                                                             a hotspots analysis communication guidance
• Inclusive: The analysis should ensure an open,
                                                             document titled “Communicating hotspots: The
  participatory consultation with all interested
                                                             effective use of sustainability information to drive
  stakeholders at relevant phases and shall be
                                                             action and improve performance” was developed
  responsive to stakeholders needs (including
                                                             and released as supplementary material. The
  cultural and geographical relevance; level of
                                                             hotspots analysis communication guidance
  technical understanding and ability to make
                                                             document provides guidance on principles of
  decisions and take action).
                                                             communication and visualisation, including
                                                             examples, and can be found on the Life Cycle
                                                             Initiative website4.
                                                             4   http://lifecycleinitiative.org

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application     15
2. Hotspots Analysis:
        general step-by-step
        process

16   Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
1    Define Goal
                                                        and Scope

              8                                                              2
                          Review and                                                    Gather data,
                        revisit hotspots                                                seek expert
                            analysis                                                      insight

    7                                                                                    3
            Present and
                                                       Iterative                                     Identify and
          communicate to a
                                                                                                  validate hotspots
           wider audience                              process

              6
                     Review and validate

                                                                             4
                                                                                     Respond to data
                      findings with key
                                                                                     and stakeholder
                      stakeholders and
                                                                                          gaps
                           experts

                                                   5      Identify and
                                                       prioritize actions

Figure 1: Methodological Framework process steps

The figure above outlines key steps that are                   standard documents, while ‘should’ is used to
common to hotspots analysis at any scale                       identify recommended elements that can be
of application5. It reinforces the fact that the               disregarded with proper justification. Finally, ‘may’
approach is in line with existing standards, which             is used for other allowed elements or alternatives.
follow the Deming Cycle (Plan, Do, Check, Act). It             As a framework, ‘may’ is used where options are
is important to note from the outset that hotspots             presented for completing each step. It forms the
analysis is an iterative approach. Though steps                basis for more specific guidance that could be
naturally form a sequence, there will be a need to             developed for various levels of application.
revisit steps in the process to refine the analysis
as it develops.                                                Table 1 (p. 18) summarises the methodological
                                                               steps in Hotspots Analysis and the associated key
The Framework uses precise terminology                         actions.
and distinguishes between requirements and
recommendations (i.e., between the words ‘shall’,              The pages that follow provide more details on
‘should’ and ‘may’). Terminology is based on ISO/              each of the eight key process steps within the
TS 14072 and ISO 14044/ISO 14040, in that                      overarching Methodological Framework for
order. ‘Shall’ is only used when this strength of              hotspots analysis.
obligation is also required in the aforementioned
5   From national right down to product specific

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application       17
Table 1 Methodological steps in Hotspots Analysis and associated key actions

      Methodological     Key Actions
      Step
      1. Define goal &   •   Convene key stakeholders (internal or external) representing the sector / product / product category of interest.
      scope              •   Clearly understand information you are ultimately seeking and how you will use the results of the hotspots
                             analysis.
                         •   Identify the goal and scope of your project to better delineate the impacts within scope and the likely sources of
                             available data and information required to support the analysis.
      2. Gather data,    •   Utilize both quantitative and qualitative sources of data.
      seek expert        •   Quantitative data may come from a variety of sources including: full or partial life cycle assessments, primary
      advice                 and secondary life cycle data (proxies if required), scientific reports, product or sector specific studies, market
                             analysis, etc.
                         •   Qualitative information could come from non-technical reports or narratives from technical reports where data
                             is not accessible. Qualitative input and semi-quantitative data may also come directly from conversations with
                             experts and key stakeholders.
                         •   Document these inputs within a spreadsheet or software program and generate the results in a simple graphical
                             output or matrix that would facilitate an understanding of the most significant life cycle impacts and also more
                             easily facilitate discussion and decision-making, especially among non-technical stakeholders.
      3. Identify        •   Assemble key stakeholders, project team or Working Group and present results of the previous step.
      and validate       •   Engage these stakeholders in a facilitated discussion that encompasses the degree to which each impact
      hotspots               identified occurs at each life cycle or value chain phase of the product or product category; or as a result of
                             specific sub-sector or sector-wide activities.
                         •   Solicit agreement from stakeholders on the degree of impact, and based on collective expertise and professional
                             judgement – either validate or adjust the degree of impact based on the feasibility of affecting change or
                             reducing impact (i.e., influence of stakeholders, technical and commercial considerations, timing, cost,
                             environmental and social impact trade-offs, etc.)
      4. Respond to      •   During meeting with Working Group, identify any gaps that will potentially hinder actions to address one or more
      data and stake-        impacts identified for action and develop recommendations to address these gaps.
      holder gaps
      5. Identify and    •   The heat-map or output of the hotspots analysis is not the “end game” but rather the “start of a conversation”
      prioritize actions     among the key stakeholders that leads to prioritization and selection of remedial actions.
                         •   As part of conversation with key stakeholders or Working Group, identify and agree upon a list of initial actions
                             based on the results of the hotspots analysis.
                         •   Clearly document any decisions on actions and priorities for reference.
      6. Review          •   Provide written communication summarizing the results of your hotspots analysis, including proposed actions
      and validate           with all relevant stakeholders including those external to your Working Group.
      initial findings   •   Invite all stakeholders to provide written feedback including validation of results and proposed actions, as well as
      with key               recommendations.
      stakeholders &
                         •   This phase of engagement may require a few weeks to allow stakeholders to have an in depth review and
      experts
                             provide value-added feedback. It is important to plan for this time, and include perhaps an additional week
                             or two buffer time in order to obtain feedback from a critical number of key stakeholders or perhaps those of
                             particular concern (e.g., those who may potentially be a hindrance to action).
      7. Disseminate     •   Convene Working Group to present and review written feedback received from all stakeholders.
      findings           •   Discuss feasibility of each comment and determine whether it should be implemented, require further
                             information or should be parked for future consideration/implantation.
                         •   Document agreed actions for each comment.
                         •   Disseminate findings more widely to those stakeholders outside of the Working Group who are affected by them;
                             or able to implement or support impact reduction measures aimed at addressing identified hotspots.
      8. Review and      •   Periodically review with Working Group or key stakeholders, the hotspots analysis, utilizing new information or
      revisit hotspots       data to validate previously identified hotspots and actions. This review may also be used to identify new life cycle
      analysis               hotspots.
                         •   Any changes to hotspots analysis methodology, engagement of additional stakeholders, etc. should be evaluated
                             and implemented.

18            Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
STEP 1                                                                                     1    Define Goal
                                                                                                and Scope

Define, clarify and solicit
                                                               8                                                    2
                                                                          Review and                                      Gather data,
                                                                        revisit hotspots                                  seek expert
agreement of the goal and scope                                             analysis                                        insight

                                                      7                                                                    3
                                                               Present and
                                                                                               Iterative                               Identify and
                                                             communicate to a
                                                                                                                                    validate hotspots
                                                              wider audience                   process

                                                               6
                                                                     Review and validate

                                                                                                                    4
                                                                                                                        Respond to data
                                                                      findings with key
                                                                                                                        and stakeholder
                                                                      stakeholders and
                                                                                                                             gaps
                                                                           experts

                                                                                           5      Identify and
                                                                                               prioritize actions

Output                                                                 Identify the goal and scope of your project to
                                                                       better delineate the impacts within scope and the
The output of step 1 shall be a written goal and                       likely sources of available data and information
scope identifying the purpose of the hotspots                          required to support the analysis.
analysis, the issues to be addressed, the
boundaries of the analysis, the resources required                     More detail
and the approach to stakeholder engagement.
                                                                       The goal and scope shall be defined, clarified and
Key actions                                                            agreed utilizing, wherever possible, a life cycle
                                                                       approach, including identification of the target
Convene key stakeholders representing the                              audience for the hotspots analysis (stakeholder
sector/ product/ product category of interest.                         mapping and engagement) and gaining a good
                                                                       understanding of their practical needs. Answers
Clearly understand information you are ultimately                      to the following questions (Figure 2) shall be
seeking and how you will use the results of the                        included within the recorded goal and scope.
hotspots analysis.                                                     These should be considered in an iterative,
                                                                       parallel manner rather than sequentially.

                  What?              How?                              Why?
                                                                       A clear goal and scope is required to ensure
                                                                       that from the outset all participants are clear
           Who?                             Where?
                                                                       on the purpose of the hotspots analysis. Why
                                                                       is the study being undertaken? What is the
                          Goal and                                     intended use and how will it be communicated
    Why?                   Scope                     When?
                                                                       to stakeholders? Do different stakeholders
                                                                       have different information and communications
                                                                       needs? For example, does the goal include:
Figure 2: Defining, clarifying and soliciting agreement of             making subsequent improvements; informing
the goal and scope

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application                                        19
Raw materials              Energy                   Labour               Ancillary inputs

       Raw Material                                                                                          Waste
                                 Manufacturing            Distribution                 Use
        Extraction                                                                                         Management

                                                                                      Reuse

                         Study boundary

                                                     Emissions to air        Emissions to water         Solid waste

     Figure 3: Example boundary diagram – product category level study

                                 Raw materials              Energy                   Labour               Ancillary inputs

                              Material production          Transport                   Use

         Upstream                  Services
                                                                                                             Waste
        products or                                                                                        Management
          services                Buildings &
                                  Equipment

                                Other practices

                                                     Emissions to air        Emissions to water         Solid waste

     Figure 4: Example boundary diagram – sector-level study

     product design; purchasing practices; road                   A life cycle approach should be taken where
     testing solutions; providing the customer with               the hotspots analysis covers issues from raw
     guidance on how to use or dispose of a product               material acquisition to the impact of the final
     responsibly; developing a sector improvement                 consumer. This is to ensure that hotspots are
     roadmap or standard, or; helping to narrow the               not overlooked through omission. The level of
     scope of a more detailed subsequent study?                   analysis required will depend upon the goals
                                                                  of the study. For example, is the goal to get an
     What?                                                        approximate understanding of where significant
                                                                  impacts occur across the life cycle of a product,
     This question aims to define the boundaries of               or to obtain accurate data specific to a particular
     the assessment. Clear boundaries are essential               supply chain? Is it to identify the organisations
     to ensure that appropriate information is obtained           with the greatest impact or ability to affect change
     and used within the analysis, and a diagram should           in a sector?
     be included as a clear way of communicating
     the boundaries. Example boundary diagrams for                The goal shall also outline the criteria for which
     product and sector level studies are provided in             hotspots will be assessed. While this need not
     Figure 3 and Figure 4 respectively.                          necessarily specify impact categories to begin
                                                                  with, it shall at least identify whether the study

20          Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
CASE STUDY 1: PRODUCT SUSTAINABILITY FORUM

   This case study illustrates that the scoping of the assessment was
   on environmental impacts which include greenhouse gases, energy
   consumption, water use and waste. It is selected based on our expert
   experience, the information available, and the suitability to give a
   practical example.

   WRAP works with the food and drink sector via Courtauld 2025,
   a voluntary agreement with the clear goal of cutting the resources needed to provide our food
   and drink by one-fifth over ten years. Signatories and Governments of the UK have expressed
   a desire to reduce the environmental impact of products in the grocery sector. In order to better
   understand where the greatest impacts occurred the Product Sustainability Forum, a collaboration
   of organisations made up of grocery retailers and suppliers, academics, NGOs and UK Government
   representatives, was established.

   In 2013 they published ‘An initial assessment of the environmental impact of grocery products.’ This
   met the requirement to identify and prioritise products and life cycle stages which contributed the
   most to greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption, water use and waste. A range of practical
   materials to help the sector implement changes were subsequently produced in response to these.
   Reference: http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/product-sustainability-forum

is considering social, environmental, ethical,                             potential and water footprint. However, for many
governance or other issues and how these                                   issues, such as biodiversity or land use change,
will be determined. These decisions will inform                            there is no commonly agreed method. It is likely that
the type of quantified / qualitative information                           in such cases the hotspots analysis will be qualitative
which will be required for the analysis, which                             or criteria will be specific to that study. Users
may or may not align with a traditional LCA                                should also be aware of the Life Cycle Initiative’s
approach. Subsequently, the impact categories                              on-going work on Environmental Life Cycle Impact
and assessment methods shall be agreed – a                                 Assessment Indicators (Flagship Project 1b7) is
number of methods that can be used for the                                 aiming to harmonise and improve methods in some
identification of impact categories are explored                           of these areas, including biodiversity, human health
below. Users should look to draw up a “long                                and resource consumption.
list” of impact categories using some or all of
the methods described below, before prioritising                           Examples of environmental, social and economic
these based on input from a group of selected                              indicators used in LCA and their definitions can
relevant stakeholders.                                                     be found in Dreyer et al (2010) Ekener-Petersen
                                                                           and Finnveden (2012) and Goedkoop et al (2009).
Impact Categories
                                                                           For social, economic or governance indicators
The methodological framework does not identify                             not commonly included in LCA or where no single
how impact categories may be defined, or how                               accepted methodology or indicator exists for
inventory data6 may be translated into impacts.                            a particular aspect, users may consider taking
Many texts on Life Cycle Impact Assessment cover                           inspiration from methodologies identified in phase 1
commonly used indicators, such as global warming                           of this project. These are summarised in Annex 3,
6 Inventory data refers to the raw unweighted data gathered during
                                                                           with many of these methodologies covering a
the project. For environmental aspects this would include all the          range of environmental, social, economic and
resources consumed (e.g., minerals, water, biological, land resources)
and emissions and wastes generated. For social aspects, inventory
                                                                           governance impacts. At the sector level, the
data would include survey responses or raw data on employment,             Sustainability Index for North American Public
equality, training, accessibility etc. This inventory data is translated
into impacts through a mix of characterisation, prioritisation and         7 http://www.lifecycleinitiative.org/activities/phase-iii/global-
weighting depending on the methods involved.                               guidance-on-environmental-life-cycle-impact-assessment-indicators/

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application                                21
Gardens and the FAO’s Sustainability         hotspots analysis may want to understand their
                    Assessment of Food and Agriculture           exposure to this. Depending on the maturity of
                    Systems include indicators across all        knowledge on the topic this may also be more
                    four areas. For products, a number           applicable to qualitative issues.
                    of methodologies identified include
                    social, economic or governance               For further information
     indicators in addition to environmental indicators.
                                                                 Dreyer, L. C., Hauschild, M. Z., Schierbeck, J.
     Users can also consider using existing reporting
                                                                 (2010) Characterisation of social impacts in LCA
     standards such as Global Reporting Initiative to
                                                                 Part 1: Development of indicators for labour rights.
     identify potentially relevant impacts.
                                                                 The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment
     Impact categories may be selected and prioritised           15:247–259.
     through a number of different methods. These include:
                                                                 Ekener-Petersen E., Finnveden G. (2012) Potential
                    Distance to target. Impact                   hotspots identified by social LCA–Part 1: A case
                    categories may be selected based             study of a laptop computer. The International
                    on issues which have already been            Journal of Life Cycle Assessment.
                    recognised as important in national
                                                                 Goedkoop M.J., Heijungs R, Huijbregts M., De
                    policy, corporate commitments
                                                                 Schryver A.;Struijs J., Van Zelm R, (2009) ReCiPe
                    or other commitments, such as
                                                                 2008, A life cycle impact assessment method
     the global commitment to reducing greenhouse
                                                                 which comprises harmonised category indicators
     gas emissions arising from the United Nations
                                                                 at the midpoint and the endpoint level; First edition
     Framework Convention on Climate Change
                                                                 Report I: Characterisation 6 January 2009, http://
     (UNFCCC) Paris Agreement. Hotspots may be
                                                                 www.lcia-recipe.net
     identified within the context of these drivers of
     action. This may be applicable to qualitative and
     quantitative issues.                                        How?
     Materiality. This requires a focus on issues                At this stage the level of robustness should be
     which are important to internal and external                agreed. The level of robustness will inform how the
     stakeholders (see Who?) and can be influenced.              data is gathered, used and communicated; and
     This definition of materiality is distinct from legal       any quality thresholds that must be passed to meet
     definitions. Materiality may involve a subjective           the goal of the study. Considerations in setting the
     selection of issues based on the prior knowledge            level of robustness for the study include:
     and values of stakeholders, for example through
                                                                 • Level of primary data collection required: For
                    a survey of residents adjacent to a
                                                                   example a screening study to identify major
                    facility or consumers. Consideration
                                                                   hotspots might be based on publically available
                    of materiality should refer back to
                                                                   information. Conversely, a study aiming to
                    the purpose of the analysis (e.g.,
                                                                   track improvement in a company’s products
                    regulatory compliance, product
                                                                   over time would be more likely to require more
                    improvement) to ensure appropriate
                                                                   detailed primary information.
     issues are considered. Through the analysis, it
     may transpire that such issues are not critical. It         • Assumptions / simplifications to be made:
     is nonetheless important that they are included to            What assumptions are being made and how
     demonstrate the avoidance of bias in assessments              might these affect the level of detail in the
     and enable relevant conclusions to be drawn.                  results e.g., using data for one product as a
     This may be particularly useful in identifying the            proxy for another
     importance of issues which cannot otherwise be              • What will be the approach where gaps exist:
     quantified.                                                   Could proxy data be used or should primary
                                                                   research be commissioned?
     Exploratory. An issue may have recently risen
     in prominence, and the commissioner of the                  Scoping this out will then allow you to consider
                                                                 whether you have the appropriate skills to define

22          Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application
these criteria and if not how these may be obtained              Sector economic data may be available at the
(e.g., through training, partnerships, outreach).                level of an organisation, trade association,
The user should engage with key technical                        region or nation through information collected
stakeholders to establish the level of robustness                by businesses, associations and national
required in the study as understanding these                     statistics bodies.
requirements will inform the best way of carrying            • Input-Output Tables and Studies. By
out the analysis. This will then link to the discussion        linking economic flows with other flows (e.g.,
of “Who?” needs to be involved in the study.                   materials, greenhouse gas emissions, labour)
                                                               environmentally – extended input output
To meet the objectives of the hotspots analysis,
                                                               information can be used to identify hotspots and
data quality criteria should be agreed for the
                                                               causal links through a supply chain. A number
assessment.
                                                               of models exist at global and national levels
                                                               (e.g., GTAP) which describe such relationships.
A data collection hierarchy should be established to
prioritise efforts (e.g., public data, literature review,    • Single Issue Studies. For many impacts,
primary data, then personal communication, then                information and data sources may exist which
unpublished corporate or government data).                     focus on that issue only. This may include work
This will be informed by the goal and scope of                 from academia and NGOs.
the study. For example, if the objective is rapid
                                                             Where qualitative data sources are being used,
screening then a literature review may be a starting
                                                             the goal and scope should establish how this
point. However, if the objective is to understand
                                                             qualitative data is to be used – will some form of
a specific value chain primary data may be the
                                                             ranking or points system be used to convert the
starting point. Depending on the defined goal of
                                                             qualitative information into a quantitative metric
the study, the types of information required may
                                                             and why has the suggested method been chosen?
vary significantly. Potential data sources include:
                                                             It is sometimes worth questioning existing data
• Life Cycle Assessment Studies. Life Cycle
                                                             structures and classifications as breakthrough
  Assessment provides information on the
                                                             insights often come from unpicking the established
  relationship between a specified functional unit
                                                             norms or thinking laterally. New data classifications
  and specified environmental impacts. Studies
                                                             or content introduced from different disciplines or
  carried out in line with international standards
                                                             sources can reveal valuable new perspectives. For
  (e.g., ISO 14040) should give clear information
                                                             example, it may become apparent that what at
  linked to a clear functional unit. Subject to
                                                             first appear to be very different consumer goods,
  review, the findings of existing LCA studies
                                                             product categories are all dependent on a specific
  may be transferable and provide sufficient
                                                             raw material or ingredient (e.g., palm oil, timber,
  information to enable hotspots to be identified.
                                                             soy, beef), raising the profile of the raw material
• Corporate Social Responsibility Reports.
                                                             to a potential hotspot by virtue of the fact that it is
  Many organisations publish reports covering
                                                             being used across multiple products.
  their environmental, social and ethical
  performance. Such reports may provide data                 In some cases, data or information on key
  which can be used in assessing hotspots, either            aspects may be missing. This is most frequently
  on their own or in conjunction with reports from           the case with “beyond LCA8” impacts, including
  other organisations. Standards for sustainability          socio-economic impacts, governance impacts
  reporting, developed by organisations such as              or environmental impacts that are not driven by
  the Global Reporting Initiative, can be used to            either resource consumption or emissions (e.g.,
  assess the quality of the information available.
• Economic Data. Market/sales data can be                    8 In the use of the term “beyond LCA” the authors mean that
                                                             hotspots analysis, as a complementary tool, is able to expand
  helpful in establishing the quantities of goods and        upon the scope and range of impacts that may be identified via Life
  services that could be considered in defining a            Cycle Assessment (as encompassed by Environmental Life Cycle
                                                             Assessment, Social Life Cycle Assessment and Life Cycle Costing).
  functional unit, and identifying subsequent data           “Beyond LCA” should not be interpreted as better than or superior
  needs (e.g., Bill of Materials, purchasing data)           to Life Cycle Assessment. 2LCA and hotspots analysis are in fact
                                                             complementary tools with their own strengths and limitations.
  to identify impacts from a life cycle perspective.

Hotspots Analysis: An overarching methodological framework and guidance for product and sector level application                   23
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