Life Cycle Services

What is our environmental footprint and how can we most effectively reduce it and create beneficial change? Franklin Associates, a division of ERG, specializes in life cycle research and ISO standard 14040/44-compliant life cycle assessments (LCAs) to help clients answer these questions and improve the sustainability of their products, services, and systems across multiple environmental metrics, including greenhouse gas emissions, water footprint, solid waste generation, and toxicity. We pioneered the life cycle inventory (LCI) concept over 40 years ago and have stood at the forefront of this science ever since. Our experts have conducted hundreds of life cycle studies and developed LCA models and tools for public and private sector organizations. Based on this experience, we have accumulated an extensive private LCI database for North America, have contributed to the publicly available U.S. Life Cycle Inventory Database since its inception, and support several federal agencies as a part of the Federal LCA Commons. We also currently serve as the data curator for the USLCI Database. These public and private databases contain information on the energy and material flows into and out of the environment for commonly used materials, products, and processes. They serve as key resources as we conduct state-of-the-art life cycle research and assessments for our clients. Our LCA specialists bring expertise across diverse sectors such as packaging, building materials, energy systems, water treatment, chemical manufacturing, circular economy, waste, and agriculture.

Life Cycle Data Development
  • Tailored data collection forms
  • Literature surveys
  • Secondary data evaluation
Life Cycle Inventory and Life Cycle Assessment
  • Life cycle goal and scope development
  • Customized data development and modeling
  • Inventory of environmental inputs and outputs by life cycle stage
  • Results analysis and interpretation
  • Sensitivity and uncertainty analysis
  • Target areas for environmental improvement strategies
  • Data for submission to USLCI Database
  • Environmental product declarations following established product category rules
  • Peer review services
  • Review of external models, tools, and emission factors
  • Multi-stakeholder project coordination
Carbon Footprinting
  • Product and organizational GHG accounting
  • Scope 3 and supply chain GHG assessment
  • Embodied carbon
  • Energy sector GHG LCA
  • Consumption-based emissions inventories
Customized Life Cycle Models and Tools
  • User-friendly interactive client-specific models in openLCA, SimaPro, Excel, and Web-based formats
  • User-defined scenarios
  • Instant generation of environmental results tables and graphs
  • Ongoing support and data updates
  • Programming and support for open-source LCA software packages based on large datasets
Integrated Life Cycle Assessment/Life Cycle Costing
  • Combined analyses of environmental performance and costs
  • Identification of cost and environmental performance trade-offs
  • LCA based on spend information
Life Cycle Communications and Education
  • Reports
  • Interpretive graphics
  • Presentations
  • Life cycle methodology training
  • Support for development of LCA–related marketing materials
LCA Software Training
  • U.S. training partner for openLCA software
  • Onsite and remote training for business and educational use of openLCA

Projects

Advanced Data Engineering for Life Cycle Applications

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

diagram of waste water flow from community to waste water treatment plant out to local waterway
Life Cycle Assessment of Wastewater Treatment Upgrade Options to Improve Nutrient Removal

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Iron framing for tall building
U.S. Life Cycle Inventory Database Curation

National Renewable Energy Laboratory

photo of food waste
Sustainability Assessment of Food Waste Management Options

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Photo of NYC in distance with smoke stakes and a pipe running over the water toward the city.
Incorporating Out-of-State Fuel Cycle Emissions in New York State’s GHG Inventory

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority

REI Chart
Recycling Economic Information Report

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

chart showing global warming potential results per gallon of recycled water delivered
NEWR Calculator

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Refinery tanks and conveyor belts
Updates to the GREET Model

Argonne National Laboratory

Photo of empty plastic bottles
PET Plastic Resin Production: U.S. Industry Life Cycle Analysis

National Association for PET Container Resources

Field showing ears of corn with husks pulled down
Assessing the Environmental and Socioeconomic Impacts of Biofuels Production Using Input-Output Modeling

National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Photo of 3 people looking at the computer screen
Green Electronics Benefits Calculator

Global Electronics Council

US EPA page topic of US Environmentally-Extended Input-Output (USEEIO) Models
Including Environmental Metrics in the USEEIO Model for Sector and Commodity Assessment

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Photo of high power lines
Regional Life Cycle Assessment Tool for U.S. Electricity

National Energy Technology Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Photo of a Petroleum Refinery
Expansion of Petroleum Refinery Model for Life Cycle Assessment

National Energy Technology Laboratory

Close up view of pine cone hanging from a branch, surrounded by green pine needles
First Industry-Wide Greenhouse Gas and Energy Life Cycle Assessment of Pine Chemicals

American Chemistry Council

Aerial view of two large circular wastewater treatment tanks
Life Cycle and Cost Analysis for Innovative and Sustainable Water Treatment Options

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

A colorful variety of different packaging types, including cans, glass jars, plastic bottles, and cardboard
Life Cycle Assessments of Innovative Packaging Products


Service Area Leads

Shanika Amarakoon

As an immigrant, issues of race, equity, and inclusion have always been central to my lived experience and values. As an environmental engineer and policy analyst, I feel grateful to align my convictions with my experience and to lead ERG’s environmental and climate justice solutions practice.

Shanika Amarakoon

Photo of Sam Arden

Solving today’s complex environmental challenges is a daunting task. It requires the delicate balancing of many competing factors, from cost and convenience to public health protection and resource allocation. At ERG, I am fortunate to be able to work on projects that get to the core of this balance, surrounded by clients and colleagues who are equally passionate about finding mindful, objective solutions for our complex world.

Sam Arden

Sarah Cashman

Increasingly, organizations are applying life cycle assessment to learn how they can most effectively reduce the environmental footprint of their products and processes. I take great pride in contributing to techniques and open-source databases that help move the science of LCA forward and facilitate access to more robust, current, and regionalized public life cycle inventory data.

Sarah Cashman

Photo of Andrew Henderson

As the song says, ‘you never miss your water ’til your well runs dry.’ I believe that most individuals and organizations generally appreciate that the environment is important but also find it complex, sometimes abstract, and easy to take for granted. I work with clients to promote understanding about how people depend on and affect the environment and to develop practical, affordable solutions that improve the environment now and over the longer term.

Andrew Henderson

Melissa Huff

Listening is critical to being an effective consultant. Early in my career as a process engineer, I learned to listen—not just to those in charge, but also to those who focus every day on the challenge at hand. Time and again, careful listening has allowed me to develop better solutions.

Melissa Huff

Photo of Ben Morelli

I came to ERG out of graduate school to pursue a career in life cycle assessment with the belief that sustainability has a concrete meaning, one that LCA can help define. To my knowledge, life cycle thinking is one of the best available approaches to assessing the success or failure of human systems and to guiding the evolution of these systems towards an improved balance of environmental and social needs with economic constraints.

Ben Morelli

Beverly Sauer

The value of a life cycle assessment depends directly on the quality of the data used for modeling. Our LCA staff played a key role in developing the U.S. Life Cycle Inventory Database, which provides free public access to high-quality data on processes and materials. I am very proud of the work we have done—and continue to do—to advance the accessibility and transparency of data needed to support and encourage wider use of LCA.

Beverly Sauer

Photo of Ben Young

Both companies and the public sector have to assess environmental tradeoffs in the face of limited resources. LCA is a great tool for assessing those tradeoffs and making choices consistent with values. By generating high-quality public data and LCA tools, we provide the underlying data necessary for effective decision-making.

Ben Young