PestLCI Pesticide Emission Fraction Estimation for LCA

Involved QSA researchers: Teunis Dijkman*, Morten Birkved*, Carlos Melero, Michael Hauschild, Peter Fantke
(*not anymore affiliated with DTU)



Pesticide emissions to the environment are among the main contributors to toxicity impacts in Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of conventional agricultural products. Emissions vary, both in magnitude and in distribution over the various environmental compartments, depending on pesticide properties, climatic circumstances and soil characteristics.
When carrying out an LCA of an agricultural product, it is therefore relevant to have emission data that are as accurate as possible for the product under study and which corresponds to the assessment detail level applied by the impact assessment methodology and model.

PestLCI 2.0 was developed to estimate pesticide point emissions from the technosphere to 3 environmental compartments: air, surface water, and ground water. The technosphere is defined as an agricultural field, the air column above it (up to 100 meter) and the soil up to 1 meter depth. PestLCI 2.0 was developed for use in the Life Cycle Inventory phase of LCA. In order to simplify the inventory step the input data demand has been minimized as much as possible.

The model is applicable for European circumstances. PestLCI 2.0’s database includes 25 climate data sets representing all European climate zones, 7 European soil samples and almost 100 active ingredients.The general framework of the model is shown in the following figure.


Consensus model for pesticide emission quantification in LCA

PestLCI was adapted based on a global consensus building effort focusing on (a) to define the boundary between emission inventory and impact assessment for pesticides in LCA, and (b) adapting PestLCI 2.0 to better meet the needs for LCA, such as integrating emissions over the entire relevant area (instead of estimating point emissions) and defining a consistent set of global crop, application, climate, and soil archetypes.

Information on the consensus effort and the Consensus Pesticide Emission Model for LCA can be found HERE.
See also the related project on Operationalising Life Cycle Assessment of Pesticides (OLCA-Pest).


How to get the model

If you want to work with PestLCI 2.0, please contact Carlos Melero. Please provide your name, affiliation and a short description of the intended use of the model.
After contacting us, you will receive a link to download the model and manual files.

The modeling platform for PestLCI 2.0 is Analytica. PestLCI 2.0 users who do not have a license for Analytica can download Analytica Free 101. This version allows users to define and to run scenarios based on the included data, but it is not possible to make changes to the model.


Model version and citation

Latest model version: 2.0.8.

PestLCI 2.0 is to be cited as follows:
Dijkman, T.J., Birkved, M., Hauschild, M.Z. (2012). PestLCI 2.0: A second generation model for estimating emissions of pesticides from arable land in LCA. International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 17(8): 973-986.


Period and main contact

2006-Ongoing.  Main contact for this project is Carlos Melero.


Carlos Manuel Moraleda Melero
Academic employee
DTU Management
+45 45 25 16 41


Michael Zwicky Hauschild
Professor, Deputy Head of Division, Group Leader
DTU Management
+45 45 25 46 64


Peter Fantke
Associate Professor
DTU Management
+45 45 25 44 52