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Sba Review 2008

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a worldwide recognized scientific method to assess and valuate environmental impacts of goods and services. It is known to be a very reliable and complete tool for environmental evaluation. Providing quantified and aggregated information, LCA enables decision-makers to understand the extent of environmental damage a human activity generates, to relate it to other activities, to evaluate optimization potentials and to act in consequence.

Forests of all varieties are disappearing rapidly as humans clear the natural landscape to make room for farms and pastures, to harvest timber for construction and fuel, to build roads, urban areas, industrial sites, etc. Although deforestation meets some human needs it also has signifi cant impacts and costs. In this monthly dossier, we present the different interests involved in the process of deforestation and we give some ideas about how to handle this prominent global issue.

The informal recyclers – also called waste pickers or scavengers – regulate the increasing flows of city waste. They help to improve the living conditions and reduce the ecological impact. In a perspective to give some dignity and acknowledgement to this profession, we dedicate our monthly dossier to the informal recycling in emerging countries. Our goal is to highlight their role in urban zones and to understand better their particular situation.

Like any phenomenon which modifies ecosystems, desertification has multiple ecological and social consequences. In this monthly dossier, we first state a global situation scheme, describing its mechanisms and effects, and explaining the process of the main international convention on this particular subject. We introduce then an amazing land restoration success story and give different solutions to act against soil degradation.
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