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Make it easier to create & combine LCIA methods from LCIA categories #98

msrocka opened this issue Oct 11, 2019 · 1 comment

Make it easier to create & combine LCIA methods from LCIA categories #98

msrocka opened this issue Oct 11, 2019 · 1 comment


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@msrocka msrocka commented Oct 11, 2019

See also the discussion here:

Probably, the cleanest solution would be to make LCIA categories "stand-alone entities" which would mean that you can use them in different LCIA methods (like flows in processes). But this requires quite some changes:

  • editing and user interface:
    • add them as category to the navigation tree
    • LCIA categories should have a separate editor
    • it should be possible to create / modify / delete them independently from the LCIA methods (=> of course with usage checks etc.)
    • use LCIA categories in the LCIA method editor via references
  • move LCIA method parameters to the LCIA category level
    • for the database update, we just copy them for each LCIA category
    • the parameter evaluation context moves to the LCIA category level
    • shapefiles and regionalized calculations!: probably this should also move to the category level
  • imports & exports:
    • JSON-LD: the LCIA categories are already stored in separate folders but updates regarding the parameters, shapefiles etc. are required; also the olca-schema doc, the IPC interface, etc. need an update then
    • ILCD: the "stand-alone" concept matches nicely with the concept of LCIA methods / categories in ILCD
    • EcoSpold 1: not sure if we still should support this?
    • SimaPro CSV: is currently not supported for LCIA methods in openLCA; there is that would need an update then
@msrocka msrocka self-assigned this Oct 11, 2019
@msrocka msrocka added the enhancement label Oct 11, 2019
@msrocka msrocka added this to the v1.11 milestone Oct 11, 2019

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@msrocka msrocka commented Oct 11, 2019

Currently, using an LCIA category in another method is only possible by copying that category. With the following script it is possible to copy a LCIA category from one method to another (tested in openLCA 1.10 but should also work in 1.9):

from org.openlca.core.database import ImpactMethodDao

# the name of the indicator / LCIA category you want to copy
INDICATOR = "Climate change - GWP100"
# the method that contains the indicator
SOURCE_METHOD = "CML (baseline) [v4.4, January 2015]"
# the method where you want to have the indicator copied to
TARGET_METHOD = "My method"

def main():
  dao = ImpactMethodDao(db)

  # load the targe method
  target = dao.getForName(TARGET_METHOD)
  if len(target) == 0:
    log.error("Could not find method {}", TARGET_METHOD)
  target = target[0]

  # check that the indicator is not already there
  for i in target.impactCategories:
    if == INDICATOR:
      log.error("The indicator {} already exists in {}",

  # load the source method
  source = dao.getForName(SOURCE_METHOD)
  if len(source) == 0:
    log.error("Could not find method {}", SOURCE_METHOD)
  source = source[0]

  # find the indicator
  indicator = None
  for i in source.impactCategories:
    if == INDICATOR:
      indicator = i
  if indicator is None:
    log.error("Could not find indicator {} in method {}",

  # finally, copy the indicator"Copy indicator {} from {} to {}",
  cloned = indicator.clone()

if __name__ == "__main__":
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