This article is the preamble to a set of articles describing initial results from an on-going European Commission funded, 5th Framework project called OMNIITOX, Operational Models aNd Information tools for Industrial applications of eco/TOXicological impact assessments. The different parts of this case study-driven project are briefly presented and put in relation to the aims of contributing to an operational life cycle-impact assessment (LCIA) model for impacts of toxicants. The present situation has been characterised by methodological difficulties, both regarding choice of the characterisation model(s) and limited input data on chemical properties, which often has resulted in the omission of toxicants from the LCIA, or at best focus on well characterised chemicals. The project addresses both problems and integrates models, as well as data, in an information system – the OMNIITOX IS. There is also a need for clarification of the relations between the (environmental) risk assessments of toxicants and LCIA, in addition to investigating the feasibility of introducing LCA into European chemicals legislation, tasks that also were addressed in the project.
International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 2004, Vol 9, Issue 5, p. 282-288