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Hello everybody,

I think I am already familiar with some of the approaches in end-of-life modelling in LCA and understand their differences.

So to my understanding in the Cut-Off approach you will not receive any credits if your product is recycelt at the end-of-life stage, however if you use recycled material as an input in production, it will  It only bear the environmental burden of transport to the recycling plant and the recycling process (resulting in much less environmental burdens than with the use of primary material).

In contrast, the avoided burdens approach (end-of-life approach) brings credits into your LCA system, as the products sent for recycling replace primary raw materials, thereby supporting design-for-recycling within the production process. However, if this approach is adopted, the use of secondary materials in manufacturing is not assumed to have a lower environmental impact than the use of primary materials.

Now my question:

Why does this distinction even exist? What's wrong with having a significantly lower environmental impact when using secondary material and at the same time getting a credit for providing recycled material at the end of the life cycle (in other words, combining both advantages of the two methods 100%)?

Best regards and thanks for any help

Rob
in openLCA by (140 points)

1 Answer

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by (1.4k points)
Short answer: To avoid double counting
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