The Athena Sustainable Materials Institute is the North American leader in life cycle assessment (LCA) of the built environment.

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The Athena Institute’s work includes development of LCA data for construction materials and systems, LCA-based software tools, and LCA advocacy.

Athena aims for increased sustainability in the production and consumption of construction materials. Data and software from the Athena Institute helps leaders in sustainability (architects, engineers, builders and manufacturers) get accurate, essential information about the footprint of their projects or materials. Athena’s work enables informed environmental decisions within a whole-system and life-cycle context.

Athena develops ISO-compliant LCA data and software tools specifically related to construction, such as the Impact Estimator and the EcoCalculator. Athena also provides education, advocacy and expertise as North American codes and standards evolve towards LCA. With a highly specialized team of experts, the Athena Institute is frequently contracted for custom research projects that require a particularly deep level of knowledge and experience in construction sector LCA. This includes carbon footprinting and environmental product declarations.

The Athena Sustainable Materials Institute recognizes that sustainability is a business imperative that will define how building products are perceived, manufactured and consumed in the twenty-first century. Athena is a measuring organization—using life cycle thinking and applying life cycle management tools, it provides the necessary sustainability metrics to help its members and clients to benchmark their performance, signal their commitment to sustainability and identify areas for improvement. Athena supports education on sustainability issues and product attributes that help all stakeholders make more informed decisions about appropriate technology, development and use of products within a holistic life cycle system framework.