Benchmarking the Sustainability Performances of Value Chains

Key Information:

Start of the project: 1st December 2016

End of project: 30th November 2019

Source of Funding: FP7 ERA-NET Sumforest Call 2016



Europe aspires to create a thriving bioeconomy. For this, new innovative product value chains need to be developed, but an increased uptake of bio-based products is only possible if they are economic and more sustainable than competitive products. The aim of the BenchValue project was to develop a versatile benchmarking method to compare between renewable wood-based and non-renewable value chains and to quantify the sustainability impacts and climate change mitigation potential of substituting non-renewable with wood-based materials to support decision makers in policy and market environment.

The construction sector was chosen as the demonstration case to test the BenchValue method, as timber can be a viable and long-term alternative for storing green Carbon in buildings and substituting GHG emissions from more energy intensive materials. Furthermore, the construction sector is one of the leading sectors of the Eurasian economy and vital to the bio-economy. In order to increase acceptance of the developed method and transparency of results, the BenchValue project built on the established ToSIA methodology for the forest-based sector.


As part of the BenchValue project, the objectives of the NUI Galway team included the:

  • Evaluation concrete and timber based construction superstructures for a theoretical semi-detached building to determine which are the more sustainable based on economic, social and environmental criteria.

Figure 1: (a) Ground floor layout, (b) First floor layout, (c) Front façade of theoretical case study semi-detached house.


People Involved:

Jamie Goggins, Paul Moran