EME 504
Foundations in Sustainability Systems


In this module, we will discuss how to use Life-Cycle Analysis (LCA) to quantify sustainability of individual product systems.

Learning Objectives

  1. Formulate life cycle assessments of natural resource life cycles, using the four-phase assessment model.
  2. Assess the environmental effect of open material loops.
  3. Compare the environmental effects of different waste management methods.

What is due for Module 4?

This module will take us one week to complete. Please refer to the Course Syllabus for specific time frames and due dates. 

Module 4: Assignments
Requirements Assignment Details
To Do
  • Read and familiarize yourself with all of the Module 4 materials.
Read Registered students may access these articles via Canvas/the Penn State Library:
  • Abraham. 2006. Sustainability Science and Engineering, Volume 1: Defining Principles. Chapter 7: Life Cycle Based Sustainability Metrics. pp. 127-159.
  • Finkbeiner et al. 2006. The New International Standards for Life Cycle Assessment: ISO 14040 and ISO 14044. Int. Journal of Life Cycle Assessment. v.11(2). pp. 80 – 85.
  • ISO TR 14049-2000.
  • See Canvas for full assignment details


If you have any questions, please post them to our Questions? discussion (not email), located in Canvas. I will check that discussion forum daily to respond. While you are there, feel free to post your own responses if you, too, are able to help out a classmate.