TU.1.B || Future Sustainable Lifestyles – Individual Choices

Beloin-Saint-Pierre, Didier; Lasvaux, Sébastien

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought many changes in our society like the transition to increased activities in home offices. At first glance, this organizational shift seems to bring environmental benefits because of the reduced commuting needs, but this lifestyle revolution can affect many other aspects of our every day life. For example, it seems reasonable to expect that the needs for further electronic equipment and the changed domestic heating habits could raise some environmental issues. We thus propose to present the results and key observations of a prospective life cycle assessment (LCA) on possible development scenarios for this new home office lifestyle, which will give us a more comprehensive picture of the question. Our study will follow the consequential approach where rebound effects will be considered. Current Swiss behavioral statistics and technical options will set the stage to create an expected future trend. Changes in mobility needs, size of homes, energy uses and purchase habits will be key aspects for the definition of this scenario. The periods of energy uses will also be considered to evaluate the importance of increased access to solar energy during the day. A hotspot analysis of this scenario will then be used to explore the best-and worst-case options for the work from home lifestyle. The range of results will be presented for one typical worker and for the broad context of Switzerland. These best- and worst-case scenarios will highlight opportunities and pitfalls of this social transition. Our study will thus provide ideas to increase the environmental sustainability of our behavior when we work at home.