Introduction to ecoinvent Version 3

ecoinvent 3 offers several exciting new features and important new and updated datasets. This introduction provides version 2 users an overview of these new additions and changes in version 3.

More Information on ecoinvent 3

Introduction to ecoinvent Version 3 for Existing Users

ecoinvent is proud to have released version 3 of the ecoinvent database, our third major release in our long history. After 5 years of preparation and work we are very happy to publish the result of our efforts. With ecoinvent version 3, you get access to several exciting new features and important new and updated datasets.


In addition to the many new and updated data, version 3 also brings some changes to the underlying methodology behind the ecoinvent data. This introduction will guide you through the most important new features, explain what changed since the last version and how this affects the results of your work based on ecoinvent. We suggest that you use this text to familiarise yourself with the new ideas and concepts that you may encounter in the data during your work with the new version.

After 5 years, the whole ecoinvent team is happy to present you with version 3 of our database. We hope you will find it as consistent, reliable and transparent as always and that you will find it a valuable tool for your work and research.

More Information on ecoinvent 3

Additionally, there are several other resources that explain version 3 and the transition from version 2 to 3 in more detail. These documents are available on our homepage and you can find a list here:

FAQs on ecoinvent version 3

This FAQ collects the main questions that we encountered during our testing of the new version and gives clear answers to them. It explains many of the new features with helpful examples or illustrations. Of course, our support system is always available to you, but the FAQ provides a fast and simple way to search for an answer should you have a question.

Report of Changes


This report documents the changes made on datasets from version 2 to adapt them to version 3: which datasets have been deleted or merged and why, which products were renamed or had a change in unit, which elementary flows have changed and how, etc. It is accompanied by the two correspondence files that list the names for activities and products, and for elementary flows and compartments. The three documents can be found here.

Data Quality Guidelines


The full and complete description of the methodological framework of version 3. At over 150 pages, this is the "rulebook" for datasets in ecoinvent, whose detailed knowledge is not required in order to properly use the version 3. Due to its complexity, we recommend checking the FAQ pages first, these often refer to the Data Quality Guidelines for further details.

How to Use ecoinvent 3


This user guide aims to get you off to a flying start with using the latest version of the ecoinvent databases, ecoinvent 3, online.