Research clients value Athena’s unique level of expertise and experience in delivering leading edge research services.
Working with the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute sets clients apart from their competitors and demonstrates their strong commitment to reducing their footprint. It’s an essential part of their corporate responsibility.
Athena’s clients also know their products will enrich our databases and software for future use. Architects, engineers and industry professionals depend on the clear, transparent and unbiased results.
Environmental footprint of materials, products and systems
The Athena Institute develops ISO-compliant LCA data for industry and trade association clients and then adds it to the Athena databases and tools if requested.
Read more.To date, Athena has completed more than 150 LCI/LCA studies on construction materials and products, making it possible for the Athena databases and software to address more than 95% of core and shell construction systems. The Athena team follows international standards and protocols (ISO 14040/44) and applies recognized North American life cycle impact assessment methods. The LCA process starts with defining the goal and scope for the study (consensus with the client on what we are trying to achieve). The Athena team then gathers primary life cycle inventory (LCI) data from manufacturing facilities in partnership with industry. When needed, Athena additionally draws on the most robust secondary LCI data or our own proprietary databases. Athena will often facilitate external peer review of the study. We will upload materials and assembly data into our tools and/or upload the client’s LCI data to the US LCI Database, thus making it more widely available to other LCA practitioners and tools (e.g., BEES). We can either publish a confidential report or, if requested, we can make it publically available from our website. We can use these data to develop an environmental product declaration (EPD).
Environmental footprint of buildings
The Athena Institute provides advanced LCA services for architecture and engineering clients at any stage of a building design project.
Read more.Athena expertise and advanced in-house LCA software and data resources are brought to projects too complex for the Athena Impact Estimator software. Athena experts are often participants in design charrettes, however they can also support the design process remotely throughout the design stages. If requested by the design team, Athena’s technical work can be done collaboratively with the designers so that the design team leaves the project with an added bonus of Athena software training. The Athena team will add the LCA results to the Athena buildings database if possible, for future use in benchmarking.
Environmental footprint of highways
Athena offers life cycle assessment of highway designs to government departments of transportation, city planners and highway engineers.
Read more.The Athena Impact Estimator for Highways generates environmental impact results over the entire life cycle for one or more roadway designs, to support design decisions that are seeking a smaller environmental footprint. This work is performed collaboratively with the highway engineering team.
Environmental footprint of residential building stocks
The Athena Institute provides LCA services for housing at an urban scale, for city planners, housing developers, building regulators and policy analysts.
Read more.Drawing on a database of housing designs including materials, operating energy and water use, Athena experts can explore what-if scenarios to reduce total footprint of new housing developments. Other types of analysis include estimating total environmental implications of large-scale changes in construction practice or policy such as residential on-site renewable energy and increased housing density.
Athena helps industrial clients address social and market concerns around climate change with carbon footprinting of products, corporate carbon footprinting, and evaluation of carbon offset opportunities.
Read more.The Institute will also help clients submit their carbon footprint assessment to the Carbon Disclosure Project or have their product carbon footprints recognized by Architecture 2030 . The Institute prides itself on providing the highest quality carbon footprint analysis for not only the rudimentary Scope 1 and 2 emission sources, but also the more indirect and elusive Scope 3 emission sources. Carbon footprinting, when properly done, draws on both life cycle thinking and life cycle inventory databases—two strengths of the Institute.
The Athena Institute provides assistance in developing product category rules (PCRs), content for environmental product declarations (EPDs), and PCR/EPD advisory services. Athena is a verifier with the International EPD® System.
Athena provides critical peer review for LCAs, PCRs, and EPDs.