- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
- Specialist wikis
Last edited 16 Jun 2021
Life cycle in the built environment
In terms of the built environment, ‘life cycle’ refers to a product, building or service over the course of its whole life. For example, relation to a building, this would include its design, construction, operation, and disposal. Considering the life full cycle of a building can help ensure that all aspects are properly considered, rather than just the cost of construction.
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a method for evaluating the environmental load of processes and products during their life cycle. An LCA attempts to identify the environmental effects during all stages of its life and produces a figure (or several figures) that represent the total environmental load. In a full LCA, the energy and materials used, along with waste and pollutants produced as a consequence of a product or activity are quantified.
The term ‘cradle-to-grave’ is an approach for defining the boundaries of an embodied energy assessment which involves measuring or estimating the total energy consumed through the entire life cycle of a building or product.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Challenging the current approach to end of life of buildings using a life cycle assessment (LCA) approach.
- Circular economy.
- Design economics.
- Design for Deconstruction.
- Design life.
- ECA welcomes the Value Toolkit for the construction industry.
- End of life potential.
- How much carbon are your buildings responsible for?
- Integrated Material Profile and Costing Tool.
- Life cycle assessment.
- Life cycle inventory.
- Life-cycle plan.
- The Value Toolkit.
- Utilising life cycle costing and life cycle assessment.
- Whole life costs.
- Whole life solution
- Why we need to grasp the whole life cycle.
- Wood, embodied carbon and operational carbon.
Featured articles and news
The teacher, architectural technologist and mum offers her insights.
Careful planning needed as supply chain issues continue.
The sensitive conversion of a neglected Cornwall structure.
Plan stresses local involvement in city, town and village development.
Environment Agency publishes BAT guidance.
CLC guidance outlines carbon reduction priorities.
Making the most of a staycation.
Organisation urges G20 to revisit wind energy.
The historian spent much of his life compiling architectural resources.
How technology can expose efficiency levels in existing buildings.
The garden heritage of Oxford and Cambridge. Book reviews.
Building capacity to better manage heritage.