Methodology of ecoinvent 3

Methodology of ecoinvent 3

What are market groups?

Since the release of ecoinvent 3.2 of version 3 of the ecoinvent database features market groups, a new type of dataset that facilitates the readability. Market groups exist for a selection of continents (North America, Europe), countries (Canada, United States, China) and products (electricity high and medium voltage, heat, natural gas). They allow to hide a level of details that might be overwhelming to basic users, without depriving more advanced users to have access to them. The LCIA results after linking are in both cases identical. This change is purely graphical to make the use of the database easier for the users.


For example, instead of being connected to about 30 small inputs of electricity from every European country, a European dataset will tap into one market group for European electricity, representing the total electricity consumption. If the users are interested to know what proportion of electricity comes from each country, they can refer to the market group dataset.

The figure is a graphical representation of the electricity, medium voltage supplying the sodium sulphite production in Europe.


While in ecoinvent 3.01 and 3.1 the user would see all the individual European markets supplying electricity to this production in ecoinvent 3.2 and subsequent releases the user would see only the "market group for electricity, medium voltage" / RER supplying the electricity.