NORSUS presents work on weighting and plastics at the SETAC Europe annual meeting in Seville

SETAC-konferansen i Sevilla

SETAC - Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry – has their annual SETAC Europe conference in Seville, where Senior Researcher Cecilia Askham is participating. On Monday she presented the weighting work she and her co-authors have done during her co-chair role for the Weighting subtask of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Life Cycle Initiative’s Global Guidance for Life Cycle Impact Assessment Indicators and Methods (GLAM). This work has resulted in weighting factors that can be used to weigh different types of damage to humans and the environment based on asking people across the globe about their opinions. She presented the factors that were the result of this research and compared them to previously existing weighting factors.

NORSUS will also present «The Importance of Material Flow Analysis (MFA) for Life Cycle Assessment of Microplastics” by Simon Saxegård, Cecilia Askham, Valentina Pauna and Mafalda Silva. This work shows how MFA can be used to include macro- and microplastic emissions in the data that an LCA is based on. The work has focused on agricultural mulch film used on fields in Europe and shows how currently available data and information can be used to include plastic leakage to nature (litter and losses) in LCA studies. The work also identifies important further research that is needed, such as the inclusion of more of the effects that plastic emissions can have on humans and ecosystems. MFA should be included in the development of better models for how plastic leakage can move through nature and expose many organisms to risk in soil, freshwater and the marine environments, as plastic is a material with a long lifetime in nature.

Both contributions to the conference include important methodological inputs to the Dsolve centre for research-based innovation