Review: Abstract Volume of International Conference on Ecobalance and Life Cycle Assessment

The abstract volume of "International Conference on Ecobalance and Life Cycle Assessment in India" edited by Prof. V.K. Sharma, was published in February 2002 based on the conference held at Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research (IGIDR) at Mumbai on 13-15, February 2002. It contains sixty extended abstracts of papers. The conference was sponsored by the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF), Govt. of India, Industrial Development Bank of India and Japan based Research Centre for Life Cycle Assessment, AIST and Asian Producivity Organisation.

The concept of ‘Ecobalance and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)’ is important for developing countries, for its sustainable industrial productivity and also for reducing environmental damages. The abstract volume has fifteen international abstracts from Sweden, Australia, Italy, Singapore, Thailand, Egypt, Kenya, Switzerland, Japan, USA. These authors have discussed work pertaining to LCA in their countries. For examples articles such as: The Electricity Capacities Life Cycle Assessment for a Sustainable Development; Activities of LCA in APEC region: A Review and Update of the Report of APEC/AIST Symposium on LCA for APEC Member Economics; Environmental Impact Assessment in Egypt: An Analytical View; LCA of Beech Manufactured Products; LCA Activities in Thailand; The use of LCA in Environmental Management; LCA for Green Productivity- An Asian Perspective etc. have been covered in this abstract volume.

Chavan and Sharma, in their paper on ‘An overview of LCA in India’ observed that it was important to evaluate the environmental impact associated with a service or product throughout its life-span, with this increasing concerns of environment, hence is important to promote this useful assessment technique in the country. They have also discussed LCA for waste papers factory conducted in Mumbai. Other papers dealt with: LCA for Anaerobic Digestion of waste products; Soils and Climate Change - Feedback and Mitigation Options; Municipal Solid Waste Management: The Development of Legal Frame Work in India; Utilisation of Coal Combustion Residue in Agriculture; Indigenous Soil and Water Conservation Practices for Sustained Ecobalance in Foot-Hills of Lowe Shivaliks; Application of LCA to Forestry Products etc.

The abstract volume emphasises the need to conduct more LCA of various products and to develop more techniques and methodologies. The abstract volume represents viewpoints of various diverse groups of people i.e., economists, lawyers, scientists, social scientists and engineers on LCA studies.

Manju Rawat, Research Associate, SES, JNU, New Delhi

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