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Mobius - How to: Add impact to your model using custom impact
Mobius - How to: Add impact to your model using custom impact

Learn how to add primary data from your suppliers’ EPDs, Environmental Profiles or LCA reports to Ecochain Mobius

Emily Lalonde avatar
Written by Emily Lalonde
Updated over a week ago

To model and measure the environmental impact of your products, you must use (environmental impact) data. This can either be primary or secondary data.

  • Primary data is data that comes directly from your suppliers

  • Secondary data comes from environmental databases, literature, etc.

In this article, we show you 5 easy steps to add primary supplier data to Mobius. This can be information retrieved from (verified) Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs), environmental profiles, (scientific) LCA reports, or environmental data found through other sources.

Feel like you're missing information? This article builds upon the following article, check it out if you want to learn more:

Step 1: Check the documents provided by the supplier for the following information

  • What is the declared functional unit?

  • What is the scope of their LCA? e.g. cradle-to-gate, or full life cycle (cradle-to-grave)?

  • What LCA framework, or impact assessment method was used?

  • Is the EPD/Environmental Profile/LCA report externally verified?

Checking these elements will help you determine whether your supplier’s data is compatible with the LCA that you are modeling, as well as identify which parts of the data you need to extract for your purposes.

Step 2: Convert scientific notation to number notation in Excel (Optional)

Often, an EPD, Environmental Profile or LCA report uses scientific notation to report the impact - especially if the numbers are very small, or very large. When you make use of the ‘Custom Impact’ functionality, Mobius will recognize scientific notation. However, currently, Mobius does not recognize scientific notation in other places in the tool other than the Custom Impact page.

Before adding the results to the relevant product or object, it can help to convert the scientific notation to a standard number notation for readability purposes.

Step 3: Open the relevant product/object you want to add ‘Custom Impact’ to

In the example shown below of Henk’s Birthday Dinner Party, we have six 12-packs of beer. Suppose the Environmental Profile we want to make use of has a functional unit of one 12-pack beer. In this case, it is convenient to use the Open Item functionality in Mobius. This opens the object in Mobius per 1, single unit, which makes it more convenient to add the LCA results from the EPD, Environmental Profile or LCA report you want to make use of.

Not sure what the Open Item functionality is? Read this article.

Step 4: Click on “add impact” and go to “Custom Impact”

By clicking on “add impact”, a pop-up appears in which you can add environmental impact data to Mobius. Within this menu, you have the option to either search directly in the LCA database for a relevant dataset or to add Custom Impact. The Custom Impact functionality allows you to add primary data from your suppliers to your product or object as shown in the figure below.

Step 5: Add LCA results to the relevant impact categories

The final step is to add the data manually from the EPD, Environmental Profile or LCA report to the relevant, respective impact categories in Mobius. It is not necessary to fill all impact categories with values. For instance, if you’re primarily interested in your product’s carbon footprint, you can add a value for Climate Change (or Global Warming, depending on the LCA method used), and leave the remaining impact categories equal to zero.

Note: If the LCA calculation method you are using in Mobius differs from the method used in the EPD you want to import, it is possible that some impact categories are missing, or are named differently.

Mobius will scale the impact you added per single unit to the actual amount used in your products. In Henk’s Birthday Dinner Party example, Mobius scales the results of the Environmental Profile proportionately from one 12-pack of Beer to six 12-packs of beer. See also the picture below. As the image above shows, the impact of one 12-pack is 0.02138 kg SO2-eq on the impact category acidification. Once Custom Impact is filled in, and you return to your product - the impact shown is 0.13 kg SO2-eq, as shown in the image below. The impact of one 12-pack increased sixfold to display the corresponding impact for six 12-packs.

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