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Life Cycle Models and Metrics: The Sustainability Compass for Energy Systems, Products, and Technology

Greg Keoleian

  • Co-Director, Center for Sustainable Systems
  • Associate Professor, School of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Michigan

This presentation will highlight research at the University of Michigan's Center for Sustainable Systems (CSS) to improve the sustainability of energy systems, products and technology. Life cycle models and metrics provide a scientific basis for measuring progress toward sustainability and serve as important navigation tools for guiding the transformation of technology, consumption patterns, and corporate and governmental policies for achieving a more sustainable society.

Life cycle models for a diverse set of products and technology (e.g., automotive technology, renewable energy, buildings and infrastructure, appliances, food systems) will be presented. Metrics examined include non-renewable energy and material resource consumption, carbon intensity, land use intensity, life cycle costs and other socioeconomic indicators. Novel approaches that will be demonstrated range from life cycle optimization of product service life to a life cycle based sustainable material design framework.

Thursday, February 1, 2007