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The Center for Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) of Columbia University was formed in the spring of 2006 with the objective of conducting comprehensive LCAs of energy systems. LCA provides a framework for quantifying the potential environmental impacts of material and energy inputs and outputs of a process or product from "cradle to grave". The mission of the Center is to guide technology and energy policy decisions with data-based, well balanced and transparent descriptions of the environmental profiles of energy systems.