By Shelly Severinghaus, Long Trail Sustainability, USA member of the SimaPro Worldwide Network
On October 2nd, the evening before the LCA XVII Conference, North American SimaPro users gathered in the River Watch room at the Sheraton Portsmouth Harborside Hotel, overlooking the Piscataqua River in Portsmouth, NH.
Attendees mingled in small groups, catching up with peers and meeting new SimaPro users. SimaPro questions were answered by Melissa Hamilton, Managing Director of Long Trail Sustainability (LTS), Michiel Oele, Customer Service Specialist at PRe Sustainability, and me, Shelly Severinghaus, Senior Consultant at LTS.
LTS Name Change
I began the presentation portion of the event, welcomed attendees and briefly touched base on our new name, Long Trail Sustainability (LTS), formerly EARTHSHIFT. We still offer the same great services and products, but with a new name, renewed energy and focus on the future. LTS continues to be the North American distributors of the SimaPro LCA software, developed by PRe Sustainability. We work closely with PRe and other global partners.
I went on to describe DATASMART, LTS’ North American specific dataset, which is included in all SimaPro licenses sold in North America. Updates are provided annually. Users are invited to submit their data. The latest update included:
- 2015 U.S. electricity and natural gas mixes in underlying data
- 2014 U.S. state electricity mixes
- New U.S. eGRID electricity processes
- Waste and packaging waste scenarios from latest EPA reports
- Consolidated into one library project, the US-EI 2.2.
- We no longer update or provide the original Ecoinvent 2.2 data
PRé Sustainability and SimaPro
Michiel, who has spent the past 22 years of his professional life with PRe, shared a little bit about the company and its partner network before highlighting two underused, time-saving SimaPro features.
First, he showed the parse feature, available in the Developer license, which allows you to import parameter sets previously defined in an Excel spreadsheet, thus saving you a lot of manual work. Let’s say you have a product that is offered in two dozen variations, with particular materials or weights varying. You can create a process with parameters for each material and weight, and then detail the variations in Excel. Using the parse feature within a calculation set-up, you can connect the process to the Excel spreadsheet, allowing you to quickly calculate the impacts of many products.
Michiel went on to show Report Maker, an add-on tool, which allows you to create graphs and tables in MS Word and MS Excel, and keep them updated as you change your model and data in SimaPro. This feature is so easy to use that demonstrating it only takes a minute, but the hours it saves users is incredible! Any change made in the underlying SimaPro model will get updated in the data tables and charts in your report. Report Maker is offered as an inexpensive add-on for any license. A free 30-day trial is available.
We hope users found the networking and presentations useful. Look for more information on LTS’ December 12th webinar, “How to leverage LCA as part of your Sustainability Program” in the coming weeks. We hope to see you all at next year’s SimaPro User Group Meeting before LCA XVIII in Colorado. In the meantime, please keep in touch and as always, reach out with any questions.