| Project objectives:
CHAINET was a concerted action in the EU Environment and Climate programme (ENV4-CT97-0477). Similar to its predecessor LCANET, it was a European network
which sought broad participation. CHAINET addressed the use of a variety of environmental tools. The Concerted Action commenced in December 1997 and ran for
2 years. The tasks of this Concerted Action was to set up a network linking environmental problem owners in three sectors with experts on different environmental
analytical tools and interactively to write a guidebook. The guidebook provides a toolbox for chain analysis, linking demand for environmental information
with supply of relevant information; as well as application of the toolbox in three different cases, indicating specific directions for design and development.
The main objectives of CHAINET were:
linking the different scientific tool communities, problem owners and stakeholders,
establishing a toolbox for chain analysis, linking demand for environmental information with supply of relevant information,
investigating how tools can be applied in three selected cases, to suggest specific directions for design and development.
| Product Descriptions:
The chainet book.
The aim of this book is to link demand and supply of environmental information in the field of Life Cycle Management. The book is based on the results of the CHAINET
concerted action financed by EU-DGXII for the work period 1998-2000, and is intended to build bridges between the different scientific communities in the
field of Life Cycle Management. A structured approach is followed, meaning that both demand and supply of environmental information are characterised, after
which the two are linked.
Chapter 2 deals with the demand side; a number of characteristics are identified including the object of analysis, different question types, consecutive
decision steps, and the cultural context of the decision at hand. Chapter 3 gives an overview of the supply side, distinguishing between concepts, analytical
tools, procedural tools, technical elements, and data. The focus of the book is on analytical tools. In Chapter 4 and in a 34-page annex, eleven analytical tools
are systematically described, including LCA, MIPS, ERA, MFA, SFA, CERA, IOA, analytical tools for ecodesign, LCC, TCA, and CBA.
In Chapter 5, demand and supply are linked, starting from the question types and indicating which types of tools are particularly suited for which type of
question. For instance, it is shown that LCA is particularly useful for operational questions, but less so for more strategic questions. Other aspects concern
the distinction between a broad overview and a detailed analysis, and, interestingly, the cultural context of the decision. It appears that without agreement
on the criteria to be used, quantitative analytical tools such as LCA, ERA, or CBA may not be very helpful as support for decision-making. Rather more robust
quantitative, or even qualitative, tools may then be used instead.
Chapter 6 makes a number of concluding remarks. A plea is made for the combined use of tools, rather than the development of a super tool. Another important
topic concerns the customisation of tools, which is seen as quite useful if combined with a periodic validation against a more detailed analysis.