The LCA4Regions project is over... is it really? While closing the very final meeting of the project on the last days of June, partners could not help feeling somehow a little bit sad that LCA4Region reached its end but they also show determination to continue in a way with what the project has started: advocating for a wider adoption of LCA thinking in all levels of our society, especially education.

LCA4Regions is based at first around 7 Action Plans to increase sustainability of selected public policies through the use of LCA. But it is actually much more than that and its legacy is already going further than the implementation of these Action Plans.

There is first of all the commitment and desire of partners to keep in touch and continue activating the network created around LCA4Regions. The project built ties not only between different regions in different countries but also between the partners and their stakeholders and this despite the COVID pandemic. For example, the Lodzkie region established thanks to the project strong relations with the Technical University of Lodz and Czestochowa University of Technology, as well as with the University of Lodz and regional companies such as IZODOM, PIETRUCHA who accompanied them throughout the project to share their knowledge and experience at any time. Two partners, namely Government of Navarra and ACR+, will continue to collaborate in another Interreg Europe project - INERTWASTE (although on a different topic). Together with the partners, we plan to publish the results of the project to the international scientific community. Thanks to the project, KTU and PJI joined the international communities, such as Life Cycle initiative, FSLCI, etc., participated in international scientific conferences (LCM2021, 2022, 2023).

Another success of LCA4Regions is to have increased partners’ knowledge and skills on LCA and convinced them that it is possible to use LCA in policies. CIMBAL has clearly taken a step forward in the context of including the LCA in a regional context and more specifically in the context of regional sustainability. It is now positioning itself as a key entity in its region when it comes to including LCA in public procurement.

Listening to the plans of partners beyond the project, it makes no doubt that the legacy of the project will be strong. Just to give an idea of how the seeds planted by the LCA4Regions will grow...
The Pyhäjärvi Institute succeeded in convincing regional policy makers to take LCA seriously in their policies and a new project will be soon started in the Satakunta region taking special notion of LCA management. The Lombardy Region set up a Collaboration Agreement with the Politecnico di Milano to host and fund a PhD student working on Textile sector circular economy, also using the Life cycle approach. The Region of Navarra will assess its consumption footprint with the methodology of the JRC for supporting policy decisions in different policies: circular economy, zero pollution, sustainable food production or biodiversity conservation. The waste unit of Navarra is additionally involved in the initiative Navarra Zirkular where life cycle thinking is included in different actions and decisions.
In Slovenia, the National Institute of Chemistry will collaborate with the Ministry of Environment, Climate and Energy of the Republic of Slovenia to present at workshops the use of LCC calculators for green public procurement.

It is for sure that the LCA4Regions project will leave marks in all the levels touched: within the political sphere which is now more aware of the benefits of LCA, but also the life-long learning education with different trainings, for businesses that were shown how to use LCA, and the scientific community and research sphere thanks to several articles published. Last but not least, the biggest impact will definitely be a more sustainable environment for all!