The European Composites Industry Association (EuCIA) is exhibiting at JEC World 2024 in Paris on 5-7 March. Demonstrations of EuCIA’s Eco Impact Calculator, the free life cycle assessment (LCA) tool for composite parts, will be available on its booth P120 in Hall 6. Visitors will also be able to find out about EuCIA’s initiatives to demonstrate and advance the circularity of composite materials, including its recent position paper on the new ELV Directive, and arrange meetings to discuss REFRESH, the EU-funded project developing solutions for recycling wind turbine blades.

LCA of composite parts

EuCIA’s Eco Impact Calculator answers a growing need to provide detailed information on the environmental impact of composite products. Available on EuCIA’s website (, it is an easy-to-use LCA tool which calculates the environmental impact of polymer composite products from cradle to gate, using a transparent and uniform sector methodology for processes following ISO 14.040/044. Users do not need any in-depth knowledge of LCA techniques and the data can be exported in the form of an Eco Report listing three sustainability indicators: carbon footprint (Greenhouse Gas Protocol); Cumulative Energy Demand (CED); and ILCD (International Reference Life Cycle Data System) sustainability score.

The data can be downloaded for import into the SimaPro LCA software to allow for full life cycle calculations. 

Composites and the End-of-Life Vehicle (ELV) Directive

EuCIA welcomes the new ELV Directive’s objective to improve circularity in the automotive industry. It believes however that the benefits of composite materials and their positive impact in improving vehicle sustainability should be recognised and balanced with current challenges related to their waste management.

In its recent position paper New ELV Directive: Considerations from the Composites Value Chain Perspective, EUCIA addresses areas of the new directive draft that need further consideration to avoid potential misunderstandings regarding composite materials. EuCIA provides clarifications regarding the dismantling, reuse and recycling of composite components and recommends some amendments to the draft proposal.

Smart, circular recycling of turbine blades

The EU has set ambitious growth targets for wind energy. In addition, the wind industry must answer demands for greater sustainability. The Horizon Europe project REFRESH (Smart dismantling, sorting and REcycling of glass Fibre Reinforced composite from wind power Sector through Holistic approach) is developing a system to enable improved recycling of composite materials from the growing number of end-of-life blades resulting from turbine dismantling or reblading. In the project consortium EuCIA joins partners RINA, ACCIONA, CETMA, CIRCE, Enecolab Srl, Gees Recycling, Gjenkraft AS, MTB Manufacturing, STD Environnement, and TECNALIA.

The project is now in its second year and demonstration and testing of the REFRESH solutions will start later in 2024.

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