Mo - Poster: Monday Poster Session
Time: Monday, 29/Aug/2011: 12:30pm - 2:00pm
Location: Poster and Exhibition Room
ground floor


Drivers for life cycle based environmental information – experiences from metal and food sector

Nani Mari Johanna Pajunen1, Juha-Matti Katajajuuri2

1Aalto University, Finland; 2MTT Agrifood Research Finland

One of the European Union’s fundamental objectives is sustainable development. Earlier environmental policies were focused more on pollution, such as industrial emissions or waste management issues. During the last ten years, the EU has begun to rethink policies relating to the environmental impacts of products. It is becoming clear that the whole production chain and the environmental impacts of the product´s life- cycle and environmental impacts of consumption in general in and consumption patterns are coming more and more important.

All products and services have an environmental impact, whether during their production, use or disposal. Many industrial companies use the life-cycle approach (often life cycle assessment) in their sustainability strategy, environmental management, development of production chain and product design. The environmental improvements and better product performance, where environmental improvements support long-term industrial competitiveness, is so called win-win situation for all the actors.

The life-cycle information plays a big role in product design as Eco Design , for example the choice of the materials and production technologies, when considering end of life issues and the use phase. Products, like paper-making machine, is good example where the manufacturing phase is only 1 % of the environmental impacts and the rest is coming from the use phase, like energy consumption. Opposite to that, the share of the agriculture is around 70 % of the climate impacts of the entire food supply chain.

Industrial companies use more and more environmental information both in business to business and consumer communication. What are the drivers for the widely increased product level environmental impact assessment and communication? Are the drivers for the all actors of production chain same? Is the main driver legislation or the development of the supply chain or is it the customer who requires LCA, carbon footprint or the environmental declaration of the product? What are the benefits producing life cycle based environmental information? Furthermore, there are also some challenges in calculating and communicating product level environmental information.

This work is an overview about the drivers for life-cycle based environmental information and management such as LCA, LCC and LCM in industrial companies. Our target is to identify the drivers, benefits and challenges for the different actors to produce and communicate more product level/related environmental information. This paper is based on experiences in metal and food sector.

Reduction of food waste in Finnish food production chain as part of life cycle management

Juha-Matti Katajajuuri, Hanna Hartikainen, Lotta Jalkanen, Heta-Kaisa Koivupuro, Kirsi Silvennoinen, Anu Reinikainen

MTT, Finland

Minimising food waste is a part food life cycle management because the reduction of food waste is crucial for mitigating the environmental impacts of the entire food chain, and this calls efforts both from food chain players and consumers. The amount of food waste in Finnish production chain has not been studied much yet. Before setting targets and identifying solutions to reduce food waste, the current situation with food waste in different parts of food chain has to be studied. This paper presents the Finnish FOODSPILL project and results of Finnish household food waste study and means of reducing food waste and related climate impacts.

In household part, research data was collected by monitoring the actual amounts of food waste occurring in 380 Finnish households. Households kept two weeks food waste diary where the amount and the type of food waste as well as the reason for the generated waste were written down. The data was analysed using descriptive statistics, crosstabs, and bar charts. Linear regression model was applied to find statistically significant results and dummy and dichotomous variables were formed to include qualitative information into the model.

According to the household results an average person produces annually 23 kilos of food waste. The main food waste categories were vegetables (19%), homemade food (18%), dairy products (17%), bread and other cereal products (13%), and fruit and berries (12%). The main reasons for food waste were: food was spoiled/mouldy, best before date was expired, plate leftover, or too much food was prepared. According to the statistical tests, the following background factors affected the amount of food waste: the size of the household, gender of the grocery shopper, daily recycling of organic waste, appreciation of low food prices and potential to reduce food waste. Moreover, storing food in right temperature and opening new packages after finishing the old ones were valued as the most concrete food waste prevention methods.

More results from food waste amounts, its sources in food life cycle and related environmental impacts and means of reducing waste is to be presented in the conference.

Implementation of risk-based life cycle management by decision support tool for small- and medium-sized enterprises

Yasunori Kikuchi, Hiroki Matoba, Masahiko Hirao

The University of Tokyo, Japan

This paper presents a method of implementing risk-based life cycle management (LCM) into practice by developing a decision support tool. The risk-based LCM applies risk assessment (RA) and life cycle assessment (LCA) simultaneously into industrial process design. To integrate these assessments on decision making, the difference of the aspects of their evaluation indicators should be revealed and related with decision parameters. For enabling systematic and effective development of procedure and information infrastructure of such comprehensive assessment in process design, the type-zero method of Integrated DEFinition language, or IDEF0 was applied. The activities by decision makers and decision support tool required for risk-based LCM were systematically visualized by IDEF0 model. In this study, a case study is performed on process design in small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). It was demonstrated that a decision support tool implementing LCM can be developed based on the proposed business model.

At LCM by industrial decision makers, several evaluation indices should be addressed by assessment methodologies evaluating occupational, neighborhood risk, and global environmental impacts. Based on the evaluation results, they should make decision on their own processes. The appropriate and effective implementation of such risk-based LCM needs a supporting tool to perform the evaluation and design of processes. Especially for the decision makers in SMEs, support systems are strongly needed. In this study, RA and LCA are integrated with and implemented into industrial LCM. Most of metal cleaning processes, which are taken up as a case study in this paper, are operated in SMEs in Japan, who are far behind in supervising environmental impact and chemical risk from large enterprises.

For the actual implementation of LCM into SMEs, business models with risk-based LCM should be clearly visualized. Developed IDEF0 model systematically described the actual business activities within risk-based LCM with LCA and RA. Based on the visualized business model, a software tool can be effectively developed for decision support by SMEs. The case study of designing metal cleaning process was performed to demonstrate the actual implementation of risk-based LCM by a software tool developed on proposed business model. In the system development, the gaps of information available for decision makers and required for assessments were carefully investigated and addressed by developing estimation models. This case study demonstrates that the visualization of business model enables productive discussions on the tangible procedures to enhance the practicability and applicability of risk-based LCM by SMEs.

Life cycle assessment (LCA) and comparison of various cellulase production methods

Kevin Graham Harding1, Susan Harrison2

1University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa; 2University of Cape Town, South Africa

Bioconversion of biomass to biofuels such as bioethanol and biogas is receiving increasing attention owing to depletion of fossil fuels, as well as global warming issues associated with air emissions. To meet the biomass capacity for this, processing of woody biomass is desirable. This requires conversion of their cellulosic component, potentially using the enzyme cellulase, into fermentable sugar.

The aerobic fungus Trichoderma reesei (Himmel, et al. 1999, Sáez et al. 2002) is commonly used to produce cellulase. Anaerobic organisms such as Clostridium papyrosolvens and Clostridium thermocellum are also used. Common substrates for microbial cellulase production include cellulose and wood waste, such as bagasse, corn cobs and straw.

Cellulase can be produced by various methods, including aerobic or anaerobic methods, by solid state cultivation (SSC) or submerged fermentation (SmF). A case study comparing various methods of cellulase production was undertaken where mass and energy balance results were obtained using a flowsheet generic model for microbial growth and product formation as developed by the authors. Once the relevant material and energy balance inventories were determined, the values were further analysed by a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) study. The LCA analysis was used to determine the environmental impacts of the process as well as compare LCA results obtained from literature material and energy balance inventories.

The study showed that large water volumes associated with low biomass concentrations of a submerged fermentation system increased energy requirements and thereby LCA scores compared to solid state cultivation. Where there was limited downstream processing, a large volume of low purity product was formed. For the cradle-to-gate approach used in the study, the LCA comparison of these systems became complex.

Lifecycle carbon dioxide emission and stock of domestic wood resources using material flow analysis and life cycle assessment

Junhee Cha1,2, Yeo-Chang Youn1, Jong-Hak Lee2

1Seoul National University, Korea; 2Haies Soft Co., Korea

Wood is potentially a carbon neutral material if produced in a sustainable way. Wood biomass requires some energy during collection, production, and transportation of the fuel. Wood resides in the forest, which amount to one third of roundwood production in South Korea are not collected and used for material or energy source for economic reason. As a result, the important renewable low carbon energy is abandoned and becomes potential greenhouse gas emitter. We study the opportunities to increase the carbon stock and to reduce greenhouse gas emission by increasing the use of uncollected wood biomass as a fuel and wood material substitution in forest sector. Lifecycle greenhouse gas emission and carbon stock of domestic wood resources and products were evaluated using material flow analysis and life cycle assessment. Optimization of controlling wood material flow is important in South Korea to cope with climate change. A single residential wooden house substituting concrete house reduced 54.3tCO2e in material stage and stored 38.3tCO2e in harvested wood products used for the wooden house. Wood pellet LCA study was done to know the GHG mitigation potential of wood biomass. The production and use of wood pellets has been increased greatly in the South Korea. Wood pellets are recognized as carbon neutral energy and can be made from the wood resources of sawmill residues, roundwood, and wood residues collected from forestry practices. The embodied energy use and greenhouse gas emission were compared among three types of wood biomass sources for pellet production. This study showed that the use of wood pellets substituting fossil fuels has positive effects both in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and in decreasing cost for house heating. Based on the results, 0.27kgCO2e/Mcal and 0.24kgCO2e/Mcal can be reduced by using wood pellet boiler instead of using diesel and natural gas, respectively. The wood material life-span of domestically produced wood is rather short compared to imported wood, which is mostly used for long lived wood products such as lumber in wooden house. About sixty percent of domestic wood is used for pulp production and medium density fiberboard production, which are rather short life-cycle. In conclusion, greenhouse gas reduction potential of domestic wood can be achieved by increasing use of long lived wood products storing carbon and substituting fossil intensive materials and by using more wood biomass for fuel substituting fossil fuel.

Comparative evaluation of different scenarios of cane sugar production in Cuba using parameterized inventories of life cycle

Ana Margarita Contreras Moya, Maylier Pérez Gil, Elena Rosa Domínguez, Vianka Espinosa Rodríguez

Central University of Las Villas, Cuba

The evaluation of the environmental sustainability of a technological option requires the consideration of the complete product life cycle, the typical analysis from cradle to grave of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA).

Cuban sugar industry has a great impact on the environment because of the resources consumption and wastes generation. At the same time the production is increased, an effort is being made to improve the use of water and energy in the industry, as well as the management of by- products and wastes. In the central region of the country different varieties of sugar cane are cultivated, and the sugar mills use different alternatives for energy cogeneration, reduction of the steam consumed and other measures for increasing the industry sustainability.

On the other hand, the parameterized Inventories for the Life Cycle of the crude sugar production in the Cuban Sugar Industry through a detailed record of all input and output currents involved in the process has been modeled.

In the present work, these Inventories are used for evaluating the sugar production with the variation of different parameters, using Eco-indicator 99 and the software SimaPro 7.2 in three sugar mill of the central region of Cuba.

Results show the relation of cogeneration efficiency with the characteristics of the sugar cane variety processed in each mill, in correspondence with the models obtained in the inventories parameterization. Beside, it is obtained the mill wit the major environmental impact related with the changes of operational variables.

Environmental evaluation of different cogeneration technologies in the Cuban sugar industry by means of life cycle parameterized inventories.

Maylier Pérez Gil, Ana Margarita Contreras Moya, Elena Rosa Domínguez, Vianka Espinosa Rodríguez

Central University of Las Villas, Cuba

The methodology of the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a tool very used today, in order to detect the environmental problems associated to a product, process or service throughout its life cycle and to determine the improvements that contribute to mitigate or to eliminate, in the best one of the cases, the impact on the environment. This reports economic benefits and efficiency for the process.

In the present work an environmental evaluation of the process of energy co-generation from the sugar cane bagasse is realized in the Cuban Sugar Industry; as an alternative to increase the energy utilization and to diminish the fossil fuel consumption.

The efficiency of cogeneration process is proportional to several operational variables, as steam pressure in the steam generator, humidity and input stability of the bagasse and others. In that sense, it was studied different alternatives of cogeneration and the parameterized inventories were modeled in function of these operational variables.

Different models of steam generators and turbo-generator in operation were compared using parameterized inventory and was demonstrated the adequate alternative by the values of the impacts.

The impact evaluation phase in the process of energy cogeneration from sugar cane bagasse reports beneficial impacts on the carcinogenesis category, due to the reduction of emissions to the air, water and soil by concept of avoided products and it is evidenced that the greatest impact is given by the damages to the Human Health caused by the emission of particulate material.

It was evidenced, according to the total impact, the best combination of steam generator and turbo-generator.

Energy from waste and residues: LCI model of decentralized combined heat and power plants

Kai Sartorius, Witold Roger Poganietz, Liselotte Schebek

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany

Energy use of waste and residues – notably if recycling is not applicable due to technological, economic or ecological constraints – is a generic strategy of climate mitigation as well as of waste policy. Incineration of waste is a wide-spread waste treatment option, however, from the energy point of view, rather inefficient. Therefore incineration is also combined with generation of heat and power, based mainly on grid combustion but with a multitude of diverse components for emission control. Above that, however, a broad range of residues are applicable for combustion in combined heat and power (CHP) plants. Several options exist for mono- as well as for mixed combustion. Research projects are under way which aim at several goals: broadening the scope of residues as to guarantee a continuous feed also if some residues may be available only seasonal; enhancing energy efficiency; providing better treatment in terms of emission minimization for specific wastes. To support technology development as well as strategic planning in decentralized energy concepts, LCA is a suitable tool. However, modeling has to be adapted to if technology option shall be compared on a rather detailed level.

In a research project at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), development of decentralized plants for so-called difficult fuels is under may: these fuels are mainly residues with various disadvantages like low heating value or low ash melting temperature and may be renewable (e.g. straw, forest residues) or non renewable materials (e.g. refuse derived fuels, litter). Based on accompanying systems analytical work, a modular LCI model has been developed which shall be applicable for modeling a broad range of combustion plants by combining different modules for fuel pretreatment, combustion and flue gas cleaning. The LCI model itself as well as first assessment results will be presented; a comparison to existing models based on a typology of LCI models for municipal waste incineration [1] will be presented and applicability for research questions connected to energy from waste and residues will be discussed.

[1] “Stand der Darstellung von Abfallverbrennung in Stoffstromanalysen“, Projektbericht Netzwerk Lebenszyklusdaten

Life cycle inventory of physic nut biodiesel: Comparison between the manual and mechanized agricultural production systems practiced in Brazil

Marília Ieda da Silveira Folegatti Matsuura1, Gil Anderi da Silva2, Luiz Alexandre Kulay2, Bruno Galvêas Laviola1

1Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária, Brazil; 2Escola Politécnica da Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil

Physic nut ( Jatropha curcas L.) is a species originated in Central America and recently introduced into Brazil. It is cultivated in countries with tropical climates for energy purposes. The elevated oil productivity of this culture and low demands with respect to soil quality and water availability have stimulated its exploration. The productive chain of physic nut biodiesel is still being established and the production technologies are being fitted to the Brazilian conditions. In the agricultural phase, the production systems currently practiced in Brazil correspond to small-scale system employing minimum tillage and manual labor, and medium-scale system including conventional tillage and making use of mechanization. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the environmental performance of the agricultural phase of physic nut biodiesel production, by carrying out life cycle inventories (LCI) of the manual and mechanized production systems. A cradle-to-gate approach was adopted, including as elementary processes the processing of electric energy, diesel oil, agricultural inputs and physic nut grains, and the transport of the agricultural inputs to the farm. Although the physic nut crop is considered to be of low demand with respect to soil fertility and is resistant to pests and diseases, the LCI of grain production showed an elevated consumption of lime and fertilizers. Compared to other oleaginous cultures, the consumption of phytosanitary products was relatively high. Since the productive chain has still not been consolidated, solutions such as the use of vegetable and agroindustrial residues from the chain itself that could reduce the amount of external inputs used have not yet been practiced, and there are still no integrated management strategies of pests and diseases. With respect to the production systems evaluated, these differed with respect to the type and amount of agricultural inputs used, and also in the consumption of electrical energy and diesel oil, and consequently with respect to the emissions generated. In general, the more significant environmental aspects for the manual grain production system were the nitrogen, phosphate and organic fertilizers. For the mechanized system, transport of the agricultural inputs was highly relevant. By the fact already mentioned that the productive chain of physic nut is not definitively established in technological terms, the LCA studies play a fundamental role as management tool, including for the formulation of public policies aiming to use this alternative resource as fuel.

Time dependency of emissions from energy generation influencing the life cycle management

Eva Szczechowicz, Martin Scheufen, Thomas Pollok, Thomas Dederichs, Armin Schnettler

RWTH Aachen University, Germany

The analysis of energy usage is an important part of each life cycle inventory analysis. Therefore, this part of the LCA requires special accurateness. Normally, static data is used for emissions of the power generation such as the German power plant mix with approx. 580 g CO2/kWh. However, this approach is only accurate for LCAs analyzing products or services using energy constant over time during each phase of the life cycle. LCAs of certain technologies such as night storage heater having a distinct behavior for their usage time falsify their results by using static data. Hence the approach for using static data for the energy usage in LCAs has to be adjusted by using time dependent values for the consumed energy.

The aim of this paper is to present the impact of the time dependency of emissions caused by the energy generation. Therefore, a power plant assignment planning was used to recreate the emissions in Germany. Each power plant has a geographic location and dependent emissions according to the external circumstances of the power plants. Using this assignment planning, a time dependent analysis of the resulting emissions is possible. An example is the global warming potential in Germany. The difference during one day can be higher than 150 g CO2/kWh. Moreover, seasonal effects are observable. During the noon hours the emissions of the German power plant mix are reduced because of the higher percentage of gas plants and solar energy, especially in the summer. Wind energy is not exactly predictable but influences the median of the emissions over the year.

Based on this analysis, the impact on LCAs can be determined using some examples such as night storage heaters. Moreover, the environmental value of shifting loads into time slots with low emissions can be evaluated. The enhancement of the common approach broadens the possibilities to optimize processes or productions using LCM.

Factor 10 for 10 domestic appliances? Is it reachable quickly? An ecodesign case studies experience at University

Philippe Schiesser1,2, Florent Chalot2, Jean-Baptiste Martin2, Béatrice Ledésert1

1University of Cergy-Pontoise, France; 2Ecoeff, France

As the first implementing measures of the Directive 2005/32/EC on the eco-design of Energy-using Products are “estimated to allow yearly savings by 2020 equivalent to 12.7 % of the EU electricity consumption in 2007” , how many improvements should we do to reach factor 10 by 2050 ?

One of the key responses is directly linked to ecodesign, innovation and creativity, especially in domestic appliances.

Every year, since close 3 years now, the Master 2 on Eco Design and Waste Management at Cergy Pontoise University, challenges students with this question: “how to reach factor 10 in current products?”.

One of the main results, among all the different learning on methodologies (functional analysis, LCA, MFA, creativity session…) or tools (TDC need, SimaPro, Umberto, Sustainable Minds, GaBi…) is clearly that eco-efficiency is feasible and realistic (even if our uses scenarios are much more energy inefficient than some publicly available data).

But to reach it, good LCA knowledge is necessary but also an intelligent use of process knowledge and a creative vision of innovation. LCAs tools are in all cases the best tools to get quantified results from the creativity ideas (even if simplicity does not help sometimes…), but not sufficient to reach factor 10 improvements. This leads not only to an in-depth material analysis, but to a more practical way to teach LCA, and a search to integrate R&D private companies department.

Different results on 10 domestic appliances will be present (toaster, coffee machine, BBQ, iron, hair drier…). More than 30 ways to reduce environmental impacts were summarized and tested, as more than 20 key process innovations were developed.

Some of these projects were successfully presented outside of University, as for example the LA RECHERCHE-ADEME-GENERALI competition called “sustainable generation”. A raclette oven innovation was presented at this occasion, with a factor 3 improvement compared to the existing product, based on innovation and creativity, but also on a different energy source.

A clear challenge is to build now partnership with private companies (Fagor Brandt…) and to deal together with data and idea protection. And also to quantify as European Commission is doing it, the global benefices of such researches.

Issues to be considered for an environmental, economic and social assessment of green roofs by a life cycle approach point of view

Giorgia Peri1,2, Marzia Traverso2, Matthias Finkbeiner2, Gianfranco Rizzo1

1University of Palermo, Italy; 2Technische Universitaet Berlin, Germany

Worldwide, there is a rising attention on the energy performances of buildings since this sector has been considered the main responsible of energy consumption, at least in developed countries. In this context, green roofs have been turning out a promising technology, according to the experts of this sector, not only for energy-efficient purposes but for the whole performance of buildings. Among these advantages, it must be noted that the shading action of the vegetation towards the solar radiation and the cooling effect of the microclimate surrounding green roofs due to evapotranspiration of plants contribute to reduce the building energy demand, mainly for cooling. This kind of roof is, in fact, obtained by adding high-quality layers of impermeable waterproofing membrane, an anti-root barrier, a drainage layer, a lightweight substrate and plants on the top of a traditional roof. Green roofs, actually, do not only allow reducing the energy consumption in buildings but are also able to provide with several environmental, economic and social benefits. This could suggest the idea that such buildings components are always a more sustainable alternative with respect to the other roofing systems. In the attempt of measuring the life cycle sustainability (LCSA) of this product, the three following methods should be applied, according to the accepted definition of LCSA, that is:

  • life cycle assessment (LCA);
  • life cycle costing (LCC);
  • social life cycle assessment (SLCA).

The study presented in this paper consisted of singling out the main issues to be considered for a LCA, a LCC and a SLCA of green roofs.

Specifically, regarding the elements to be taken into account for a social evaluation of the life cycle of such technology, an analysis of the potential social impacts of green roofs has been also done, since a standardized procedure SLCA has not been carried out yet at the best of our knowledge. Therefore, three different sets of data will be provided.

The results of this work might be useful in order to highlight which data different actors of the product life cycle chain should be pushed to provide with. This, on turn, could contribute to render easier the life cycle sustainability assessment of this product. Of course, some applications on suitable case studies, with the pertinent sensitivity analysis, will be needed in order to figure out the weight of each element here proposed, in the evaluation of the life cycle sustainability of this product.

Life cycle assessment, a tool for improving “wash appliances” performances in the framework of the Ecodesign Directive

Laura Cutaia1, Raffaele Scialdoni2

1ENEA, Italy; 2University of Camerino, Italy

In the framework of the preparatory studies for eco-design requirements for energy using products, authors have done the environmental assessment for Washing-Machines and DishWashers, as a part of a more broad study (EC DG-Energy Tender TREN/D1/40-2005 - Lot 14). Standard base cases – as reference models - were identified on average of the 2005 CECED technical database and on the sales data by energy efficiency in 2004 for 21 European countries.

Standard base-case characteristics were identified for dishwashers, 9 and 12 place settings (DW9, DW12) and for washing machines, 5 kg load (WM5). On these models, LCAs were realized according to the ISO14040 standards. For the LCA data processing, the Tender required the use of dedicated software, the EuP-Ecoreport, implemented on a spreadsheet platform. The authors, in order to verify and validate the results, have done the LCAs using one of the most popular commercial SW, the SimaPro7, too.

Both for dishwashers (DW12, DW9) and for washing machines (WM5) inventory data were collected from European producers: 6 for DW12, 4 for DW9, 5 for WM5. An inventory data questionnaire has been sent to producers in order to collect data on: Production phase (Bill of materials with scraps, Transport, Processing), Assembling (Energy, water and other materials used), Use phase (Life, electricity consumptions – on/stand-by/off mode, consumables), End of Life (Dismantling, recycling, energy recovery, land-filling - %). As some of data provided from producers were not complete and not compliant with standard foreseen from questionnaires, a control phase and a feedback with producers was necessary. Then, average inventory tables were calculated for each of the three standard base-cases.

Inventory data were, thus, implement both on EuP-Ecoreport and on SimaPro SWs, according to available data-bases and according to potential offered by the two different calculation tools. In fact, while the SimaPro sw offers a wide possibility to integrate data and specify details about the inventory phase, the EuP-Ecoreport is quite stringent, not allowing many choosing possibility from the users. Furthermore, while SimaPro allows respecting ISO14040 standards, EuP-Ecoreport is partially compliant, e.g, not allows the full implementation of the life cycle impact assessment. In conclusion, results of LCAs performed with the two SWs were analyzed and compared, as starting point for eco-design indications for such kind of domestic appliances.

Material substitution and weight reduction as steps towards a sustainable disposable diaper

Pia Lindahl1, Göran Broman1,2, Karl-Henrik Robèrt1

1Blekinge University of Technology, Sweden; 2Luleå University of Technology,, Sweden

Because of increasing market demands for ‘sustainable products’, many companies currently shift from non-renewable to renewable resources and aim at reduced product weight However, sustainability implications of products is a complex issue that depend on numerous factors, of which substitution for renewable materials and weight reduction are only two.

In this study we assess current practices and developed action plans for incontinence diapers with regard to the strategic potential of these action plans to contribute to social and ecological sustainability. We apply a previously published Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development, utilizing backcasting from a situation when products and services do not contribute to a systematic degradation of socio-ecological systems.

The research question is; how do the assessed action plans lead towards a sustainable management of an incontinence diaper? In this context, rational actions should deal with (i) increased resource efficiency to reduce the total use of materials and energy, (ii) substitution of those materials that are difficult to manage in a sustainable society and (iii) added material functionality for enhanced product performance.

The assessment shows that early actions considered by the companies are: (i) substitution of the petroleum based material in the absorbing core of the product for wood based material and (ii) redesign for general weight reduction. From a strategic sustainability perspective, however, a strategy for achieving a ´sustainable product´ of this type needs to include both substitution for renewable material in the absorbing core and weight reduction as well as other actions, like, e.g., substitution of all non-renewable materials in the product, reduction of energy use during production and generally improved waste treatment to allow extraction of the intrinsic energy in the product. The assessment also shows that while substitution for renewable material in the absorbing core can be a first smart step in the right direction, investments in weight reduction as a first single action risks being a sub-optimization, not building a flexible platform for continuous development towards a fully sustainably managed product.

PEGASUS EU project is providing a software for ecodesign and LCA of carbody parts

Jerome Payet2, Marion Sie1

1CYCLECO, France; 2EPFL, Switzerland

The European Project PEGASUS was gathering 24 partners for the development of new technology for producing carbody parts. Nevertheless. EU commission was also questionning the environmental performances of these parts. Thus one of the work package was devoted to perform Life Cycle Assessment of the technologies developped in the project. A software called " Cycle'IT automotive " was developped in order to facilitate life cycle assessment and ecodesign of carbody parts. The software was required to be compatible with ISO 14040-44 but also with the ILCD requirements, and must be able to use the Ecoinvent data. A case study with Smart rear fender highights the simplicity of the use of the sofware and its ability to facilitate interpretation of the results in order to strengthen the outcomes of the LCA. The example illustrating the use of " Cycle'IT automotive " also identify as a key issue the end of life management of the product and the benefit that can be expected from the secondary material.

Towards the use of LCA as an approach to evaluate contribution of agriculture to sustainable development

Alexandre Thevenot, Jonathan Vayssières

CIRAD, France

Development of sustainable agriculture is essential for maintaining ecosystem services and human well being face to significant human population growth. Decision-makers must now take into account not only economic performance, but also environmental compliance and social responsibility of supply chains. Agriculture differs from other sectors such as industry in the sense that it provides numerous ecosystem services such as landscape maintenance, social cohesion, rural exodus limitation...

Life cycle analysis (LCA) is largely presented as a standardized method for environmental impact assessment of a product or a process. Implementation of LCA generally points out only the negative impact of agricultural activities (see for instance the FAO reports for world livestock products).

In this paper we suggest that LCA may be considered not as a standardized method - with the risk of limiting its implementation domain - but more as an approach offering the potential to integrate the three dimensions of sustainable development and to considerer both negative and positive impacts of a product or an anthropogenic activity. LCA may be fed by numerous impact assessment methodologies produced by various disciplines (agronomy, social sciences, economy …).

  • Environmental impact assessment in agriculture, including Environmental LCA, is largely investigated by agronomy. It is potentially a very active research field because of the multiple positive and negative agriculture- environment interactions. Many of these interactions are site-specific, requiring important work on impact regionalization in order to enlarge the criteria considered (e.g. biodiversity loss, water use…).
  • For the social dimension, development of social LCA is still under progress and there is a lack of case studies. Research currently focuses on establishing a quantitative link between inventory and impact categories. Pathways development is a crucial step in methodology standardization in the image of what was done in the 90’s for environmental LCA.
  • For the economic dimension, life cycle costing is often proposed as the reference methodology. It is very close to cost-benefit analysis classically conducted by economists at the supply chain level. Indicators may be enriched by other methodologies such as the social accounting matrix.

Eventually, using a “cradle to grave” LCA approach to build integrated views of products and processes is twice relevant: it produces views over the geographical borders and constitutes a sound base for multi-disciplinary views.

A consistency analysis of LCA based communication and stakeholders needs to improve the dialogue on new electric vehicle

Stephane Morel1, Tatiana Reyes2, Adeline Darmon1

1Renault, France; 2University of Technology of Troye, France

1. Introduction

The launch of new technologies such as electric vehicles will be a major change on several levels such as new business models and possible changes of consumer’s habits. The results of the LCA are important as they will be used for decision support for governmental policies, for vehicle design, and finally to disclose environmental data to specific stakeholders around the world.

Within the first stage of LCA, the definition of an appropriate impact assessment method is a key point of the study. In our case, this choice significance is emphasized when coming to comparative assessment of new products & services.

As a consequence, a thorough analysis is required to clarify actual needs for LCA communication between stakeholders and an appropriate indicator to disclose for the comparative assessment of technologies. This paper discusses this issue and makes recommendation for the definition of impact assessment methods for passenger vehicles.

2. Methodology & 3. Results

Eight stakeholders have been identified, among them; we will find policy makers, sup-pliers, company's decision makers, fleet customers, financial investors, etc. For each of them, their needs have been qualified and a ranking as been made based on the importance of LCA information disclosure in the dialogue for their specific countries. For each country, specific needs are identified by croosing human development index and environmental state.

The literature review and software comparison brings the several impact assessment methods available on the market. The automotive technology LCA comparison is carried and show significant differences according to the chosen indicator.

Finally, these two items are crossed with the recommendation of the International Reference Life Cycle Data System (ILCD) to draw the final conclusions.

Based on these observations, it is possible to recommend the preferable LCA indicators to be used in term of quantity (how many to disclose) and quality (which stakes) toward each stakeholder category.

4. Conclusions

When performing an LCA study, the choice of the LCIA method is a key point to ensure the quality of the dialogue within the actors of the value chain. Since LCA develop-ment is accelerating worldwide, it brings the necessity to deepen this question.

This article describes the needs to consider and propose relevant methods for the dia-logue on automotive technologies.

Keywords: impact assessment - technology – vehicle – business model – stakeholder analysis - Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) - comparable alternatives

Advancing life cycle management for railway signalling and control systems

Christoph Lackhove, Florian Brinkmann, Benedikt Scheier, Ikedichi Mbakwe, Thomas Böhm

German Aerospace Center, Germany

The railway system is one of the most environmentally friendly transportation systems. It is characterized as highly energy efficient, safe in operation, and low in CO2 emission. The lifespan of its assets is extraordinary long, the operation is supposed to be highly reliable.

Therefore the assets require life cycle management adapted to the specific demand of railways. There have been significant advances in the areas of rolling stock as well as roadbed and track. Thus, this paper focuses on the challenges of improving the railway signalling and control systems along their life cycle. The railway control and signalling (RCS) system ensures the safe and high performance operation of trains.

The lifespan of about 25 to 50 years already has to be considered during the development phase of the systems. This especially affects spare parts supply which needs to be ensured over the whole operational phase. Furthermore, the RCS systems of a railway network will have to be constantly renewed. This results in a heterogeneous picture of the systems in operation. Standardized interfaces, components, and architectures are not yet widely used.

Dimensioning and planning an infrastructure and its corresponding signalling and control system is a complex task. Numerous judicial, technical, operational and financial restrictions have to be taken into account. Nowadays the infrastructure is often equipped with signalling systems that do not meet the expanding traffic demands. Systems are often optimised to costs of acquisition, and therefore leaving important figures unconsidered (e.g. the number/duration of breakdowns or the amount of delays during the lifespan). For this reason, proper methods and tools are required to allow planners and managers to optimise the complex system according to life cycle costs, mobility needs, public benefit and environmental impact. The maintenance of the RCS systems during the operational phase is essential for their safety and performance. Inappropriate maintenance strategies result either in high failure rate or extensive maintenance costs. The issue is even more challenging as rail networks are spatially distributed across huge areas. Thus maintenance activities along the numerous assets have to be well coordinated.

At the Institute of Transportation Systems at DLR, a research team specialized in Life-Cycle-Management for railway signalling systems focuses on how these challenges can be met. The aim is to further improve the railways sustainability and its share along other modes of transportation. This paper describes tools and methods to advance Life-Cycle-Management for RCS systems.

An environmental tour along the life cycle of the asphaltic roads

Alberto Moral1, Laura Pablos1, Nuria García1, José Ramón López3, Jesús Felipo3, Carlos García4, Rubén Irusta1,2

1CARTIF Centro Tecnológico, Spain; 2Valladolid University, Spain; 3Pavasal E.C., Spain; 4Collosa, Spain


Over 90% of the total road network in Europe has an asphalt surface. There are around 4.000 production sites in Europe and about 10000 companies which are involved in the production and/or laying of asphalt. In 2008, the European asphalt production was around the 37% of total world production.


Taking into account the relevance of these data and in the framework of the Spanish FENIX project, several attempts have been carried out to obtain a more sustainable process, considering all the stages involved in the life cycle of the asphalt road product .

The life cycle stages Raw materials and Fuels extraction, Manufacturing processes, Distribution, Construction works, road Maintenance and End of life have been considered.

Then, the complete environmental life cycle of the road (excluding the indirect effect of the use stage) has been studied following the guidelines of the standards ISO 14040:2006 and ISO 14044:2006. Two tools were used to develop the study:

a) the commercial software SimaPro 7.1 LCA tool

b) a proprietary software specifically developed by Cartif and the road constructor company Collosa to the road builder sector, which can help to include the life cycle thinking and the ecodesign concept to the companies of this activity sector.

In both cases, data from the processes of the asphalt companies involved in the FENIX project were taken into account to perform the Life Cycle Inventory.


In this way, it is presented an example of the environmental behaviour of a road section S122 (according to the Spanish regulation), identifying the most impacting stages in the life cycle of this road product . This fact allows the researching of new strategies to reduce their impact, boosting areas of improvement such as long life pavements, able to diminish maintenance stage.

Also, the Manufacturing processes have been technically and environmentally studied and evaluated, and some best practices have been proposed. The results confirm that it is possible to achieve a significant reduction in the CO2eq emissions at plant.

In addition, the appliance of recycling techniques on the pavement maintenance activities diminishes significantly the environmental impact related to the road.

Communication of LCA in the automotive sector: Environmental commendations

Jens Warsen, Carsten Gnauck

Volkswagen AG, Germany

For many years, the only measure of a car’s environmental impact was what came out of the exhaust pipe. But sustainable mobility demands a much broader approach, as environmental impacts are not just produced while driving. Long before a vehicle ever hits the road, raw materials must first be extracted, and components must be manufactured. Thus, the development of targeted innovations has to consider the entire life cycle of the vehicle.

Volkswagen has many years of experience with Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) for product and process optimisation. While at first being primarily descriptive and for internal analyses only, we have continuously advanced the scope of our assessments and methodologies. Today, LCA has become an integral part of our environmental principles that will ensure we reach the goals set out in Volkswagen’s Environmental Policy. To make at least part of these efforts visible for our customers, shareholders and other stakeholders inside and outside the company we publish what we call Environmental Commendations.

Environmental Commendations are based on detailed analyses of material and energy consumption, emissions and other environmental impacts caused throughout the Life Cycle of a specific Volkswagen model. Through the Environmental Commendation, Volkswagen documents ecological progress in a vehicle or technology compared to its predecessor. The information given is verified by the independent technical inspectorate TÜV NORD, which then issues a certificate confirming that the underlying LCA is based on reliable data, that the statements made are correct and that the method used to compile it complies with the requirements of ISO standards 14040 and 14044.

Development of a methodical approach for the description of the use phase of electric vehicle concepts in a life cycle assessment

Michael Baumann, Michael Held

Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics, Germany

Due to limited potential for improvement of conventional vehicle power trains regarding fuel consumption and emissions, electric vehicle concepts will gain increasingly in importance in future. The German federal government has within the national roadmap for electric mobility set the goal that there are one million electric vehicles going to be used in Germany in 2020.

In the research project “Fraunhofer System Research for Electromobility” which is promoted by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research it is aimed at generating knowledge and technology along the entire value-added chain.

Within this project in this study was developed a methodical approach, which enables the environmental assessment of use phases of different electric vehicle concepts. The chosen electric vehicle concepts are aligned with electrified models of automotive manufacturers which are in development phase and soon enter the market (Battery Electric Vehicles, BEVs and Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles, PHEVs).

The study was introduced with an investigation of the state of the art of electric mobility and all relevant information, components and parameter were summarized. The structure of the method is characterized by calculation modules, which allocate the state of the art data to the categories “energy demand”, “energy supply” and “maintenance and use characteristics”. The calculation of the vehicle specific energy demand is based on driving cycles and vehicle dependent parameters, like e.g. vehicle mass, driving resistance and power train characteristics. The energy supply parameters are calculated on basis of electricity grid mix and fuel supply (for PHEVs). In the module “maintenance and use characteristics” maintenance properties and lifespan of power train components (e.g. battery system) and use characteristics (e.g. assumed mileage per year) are integrated in the structure of method. All modules are linked up and their results are joined to environmental profiles which are categorized in potentials and life cycle inventories. The results of the profiles can be compared with conventional powertrain concepts.

As a result of the application of the method the crucial parameters on environmental impacts of the chosen electric vehicle concepts (BEVs and PHEVs) could be determined. The impacts are influenced by the underlying driving cycle, electricity grid mix and life span and dimensioning of the battery system. The method developed within this study can be used as a basis for further LCA electromobility research projects.

In the presentation the structure of the method, results of the application and conclusions for future electromobility research will be shown.

Environmental lifecycle feasibility assessment of hydrogen as an automotive fuel in Western Australia

Wahidul Karim Biswas, Michele Rosano, Brett Callum Thompson

Curtin University, Australia

A life cycle assessment (LCA) analysis has been undertaken in order to determine the environmental impacts of hydrogen as an automotive fuel. The criteria for environmental assessment includes life cycle emissions, photochemical oxidation and eutrophication impacts, equal to or lower than those of petrol. Two hydrogen production methods have been analysed. The first was the Steam Methane Reforming method which uses natural gas (methane) as a feedstock. The second method analysed was the Alkaline Electrolysis method, a mature technology that uses water as a feedstock. Renewable electricity, in the form of wind generated electricity, was also incorporated into the LCA analysis. Life cycle emissions and impacts were assessed per kilometre of vehicle travel.

The study assessed the life cycle global warming, photochemical oxidation and eutrophication potential of each hydrogen production method and determined the predominant impacts to be global warming and photochemical oxidation. Initial analysis suggests that both hydrogen production methods produced more greenhouse gas and eutrophication emissions per kilometre than petrol, with the only environmental improvement occurring in terms of a reduction in photochemical emissions. After renewable energy was incorporated, the total emissions were significantly reduced below the levels of petrol. A production ‘hotspot’ analysis highlights that while the life cycle phase of hydrogen usage produced very few emissions, the reliance on electricity and fossil fuels during the production stages resulted in higher emissions than petrol. The results suggested that without the incorporation of renewable (wind) energy, hydrogen fuel production is not an environmentally friendly replacement for petrol as an automotive fuel.

Environmental properties and scenarios for future rail systems: Infrastructure and operation of high-speed rail in Norway

Carine Grossrieder, Johan Pettersen

MiSA, Norway

The environmental performance of high-speed rail is controlled by several interacting factors, including requirements for the infrastructure, operational properties of the rolling fleet, and load factors for infrastructure and train sets. Besides the technical components, deforestation and land use changes may represent significant portions of the environmental footprint of new rail sections. In this paper we describe the temporal sensitivity in these factors, and investigate their importance to life-cycle assessment of high-speed rail futures in Norway.

Prospective studies for railway need to consider scenarios for the future development of all system components, including market issues, technology and external factors. Energy use and energy technology is an issue treated in most strategic studies, for transport and other systems. However, given the large portion of renewables in the electricity market, life-cycle assessments for rail in the Scandinavian context have indicated that infrastructure dominates many of the impacts, especially climate change effects. The initial development of infrastructure must be made using current technology, but maintenance and operation of infrastructure represent major parts of the footprint and thereby provide important potentials for improvement through time. Moreover, traffic pattern and traffic demand is expected to change in the future, and these will affect both infrastructure load and efficiency in use of the rolling stock.

We present environmental properties and scenarios for future high-speed rail systems in Norway. The basis is a recently completed White Paper for the environmental performance of intercity high-speed rail corridors, using process life-cycle assessment. We describe scenarios for the temporal development of controlling factors and investigate their importance to the total environmental performance. Factors for evaluation include energy source and efficiency, fleet and infrastructure utilization, production technology for infrastructure inputs (most importantly steel and concrete) and energy supply, as well as the external biogenic aspects.

Green logistics – How to do it right

Silvia Marton1, Paul Wittenbrink2

1myclimate, Switzerland; 2Duale Hochschule Baden-Württemberg, Germany

When talking about green logistics, the focus is often set on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. For responsible carriers and logistic companies, an effort to minimize those emissions is indispensable. The climate protection organisation myclimate and Prof. Dr. Paul Wittenbrink have developed an industry solution to measure, manage and reduce GHG emissions from the transport industry. An emissions profile covering the GHG emissions of the whole company is conducted annually. The emphasis is placed on emissions from transport services. Following a life cycle approach, the fuel production and combustion as well as the infrastructure are considered. The assessment of the emissions is based on data from ecoinvent.

Other components of the solution are analyses of the energy efficiency of buildings, of the fleet’s potential and of logistics processes. The aim is to support companies on their way to reduce and avoid climate-relevant emissions.

The paper wholesaler Papyrus Switzerland Ltd. was the first company to implement the system. They transport more than fifty per cent of their products by rail. The lorries of Papyrus Switzerland cover a distance of over 2 million kilometres per year. The emissions profile of the company shows, that more than half of the total GHG emissions of the company are attributed to transportation. The second most important source of GHG emissions is energy consumption, followed by consumable material such as office supplies. Only a small fraction of the emissions is due to commuting, business traveling and waste disposing. The analyses identified two main reduction potentials: (1) the heating management at the logistics centre and (2) the degree of capacity utilisation of vehicles. The subsequent year’s assessment of the company’s GHG emissions proved the success of taken measures, e.g. a reduction of the natural gas consumption at the logistics centre by 32 per cent.

peyer bern, a relocation company, was the second to implement the system. As the first company in Switzerland, they installed a company-owned natural gas station for their lorries. The analysis of the fleet showed several potentials to reduce GHG emissions, e.g. the utilisation of better lubricants, eco-drive trainings or low-rolling resistance tires. So far the GHG assessment was only done for one year, the future assessments will prove if the measures could reduce the company’s emissions.

Both examples show that the potential for reduction in GHG emissions in the transport sector is high, even for companies that are already aware of the topic.

Instant LCA: A software to calculate LCA of packaging instantaneously and accurately

Elisabeth van Overbeke, Bernard De Caevel, Ooms Michaël, De Vos Marc

RDC Environment, Belgium

The Instant LCA software is a new way to perform LCA studies through an innovative, user-friendly interface. It provides even non-LCA experts with a tool calculating instantly and accurately the carbon and environmental footprint of product and packaging.

The main general concepts used for developing the tool are the following:

  • Step 1: developed extended LCA models are used; these models are compliant with international standards and include secondary data from local and international recognized LCA databases
  • Step 2: variable eco-design key parameters are selected through sensitivity analyses
  • Step 3: the Instant LCA tool gives access to these key parameters through a user-friendly and intuitive interface that can be used by non-experts; the tool also provides instant live results on screen as well as generates standard EPD reports and Excel exports

Instant LCA calculates CO2 equivalent emissions, energy and water consumptions as well as other main environmental impact indicators. Furthermore, the results can be aggregated in order to show the total environmental impact of a brand, country of sales or whole company.

For a large set of packaging, these steps are already achieved and the tool is ready-to-use. Customization of the tool is however still possible.

Life Cycle Assessment projects by process groups

Isabel Joaquina Niembro-García, Xavier Carod, Margarita González-Benítez

Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Spain

The actual consequences analysis derived from the study of a system’s life cycle, improving the simplistic approach of the decision making by partial aspects. The LCA has become a powerful and widely-used tool that allows the professionals to take action in a sustainable way. The work group carried out an LCA normally takes advantage of their knowledge and abilities to obtain a more or less reliable result. The working group's efforts haven’t been until now systematically and normally guide themselves by experience, logic and intuition. It’s pertinent that this effort is oriented by using Project Management. Project Management is the application of knowledge, ability, tools and techniques to the activities of the project to satisfy its requirements. An LCA study can be considered as a project, a temporal effort made for a unique result. With the Project Management vision, the elaboration of an LCA is faster, easier and successful. We have developed a guide for the elaboration of an LCA following the guidelines of ISO 14040 and Project Management, we have named it as: Life Cycle Analysis projects by process groups. Our point of view emerges from relating the matrix of the LCA phases (Goal and scope, Life cycle inventory, Life cycle impact assessment and Interpretation) and the process groups (initiating processes, planning processes, executing processes, controlling processes and closing processes). With that, we provide to the work group some guidelines to make an LCA as a project where we balance the scope, time, costs, quality, resources and risks.

A LCA study of the production of modern highly effective windows in Norway

Rolf André Bohne1, Edgar Hertwich1, Oddbjørn Dahlstrøm1, Silje Eriksen2

1Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway; 2Norbohus AS, Norway

This paper analyzes the production of modern highly efficient windows in Norway. Life Cycle Assessment was used to calculate cradle to gate emissions for the different window types. Two different windows factories was studied.

The analyzed window size was 1230mm * 1480mm and windows had U values of 1,2 W/m2K and U 0,8 W/m2K. The windows were mounted with either a glazing bead or maintenance free aluminum cladding.

An environmental comparison was done between a sash and frame of pure laminated wood, and a sash and frame of wood and polyurethane. Total increase of impacts was calculated by using krypton or xenon gas, instead of argon gas. Lastly, the total environmental offset time was calculated (in years) for 10 impact categories, when the windows of a TEK10 Norwegian wooden residential house changed window U values from U 1,2 W/m2K to U 0,8 W/m2K.

By changing all windows with a U value of 1,2 W/m2K to 0,8 W/m2K in a house projected after the Norwegian TEK10 regulations, the overall environmental offset time is between 2 and 4 years for all impact categories except for freshwater eutrophication and freshwater eco-toxicity (11 years). The environmental offset is regardless of how the window is produced. When considering the lifetime of windows to be 30 years, the net environmental benefits are significant.

The overall conclusion from this study is that it is environmentally beneficial to produce modern highly efficient windows.

An effect of CO2 information labeling for the pork produced with feed made from food residuals

Hideaki Kurishima1, Tatsuo Hishinuma2, Yutaka Genchi3

1Shibaura Institute of Technology, Japan; 2Utsunomiya University, Japan; 3National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan

In recent years, food residual from urban areas in Japan has come to be regarded as a renewable biomass resource, and its recycling is expected to lessen the environmental burden. In particular, the revised Act Concerning the Promotion of Utilization of Recyclable Food Waste (Food Recycling Law) specifies the use of food waste in livestock feed as a preferred way of utilizing its components and calorie content. Furthermore, in our study, it is cleared that the pork produced with liquid feed made from food residuals emits less amount of lifecycle CO2 (LC-CO2) in comparison with ordinary Japanese pork.

For dissemination of feed from food residuals, it is essential for consumers to actively evaluate in respect to the resource recycling and the reduction of LC-CO2, and purchase such pork. Therefore, this study attempts to evaluate customer reaction to the labeling of food residuals recycling and CO2 reduction for the pork using questionnaire survey and sales experiment.

We analyzed the questionnaire survey results by utilizing a conjoint analysis as a method of environmental economics. The results are shown as below: (1) The amount of willingness to pay (WTP) for the pork produced with feed from food residuals was approximately additional more than dozen yen / 100g-meat in comparison with that of ordinary Japanese pork. (2)The amount of WTP for LC-CO2 reduction was also approximately additional 0.4 yen / g-CO2. From the above results, it is suggested that actively labeling the information for resource recycling and LC-CO2 reduction would lead consumers to purchase the pork produced with feed from food residuals.

For verifying the above results, we are conducting the sales experiment by labeling of LC-CO2 reduction information to the pork at present. We are planning to report the results at conference.

Application of life cycle assessment methodology to methane production from solid waste

Javier Dufour1,2, David Serrano1,2, Juan José Espada1

1Rey Juan Carlos University, Spain; 2IMDEA Energy Institute, Spain

The increasing depletion of non-renewable resources along with the growing concerns about climate changes have led to search cleaner fuels and also develop advanced technologies with low levels of pollutants emission and high efficiency. The reduction of environmental harms (especially greenhouse gas emissions) involves minimizing the dependency on fossil fuels and the use of renewable energy. Hydrogen fuel provides clean energy conversion when compared to conventional fossil fuels in internal combustion engines, fuel cells and other applications. However, production of hydrogen from fossil fuels is far of being sustainable due to their high greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and therefore, CO2 capture and storage (CCS) techniques are commonly used to reduce these emissions.

Currently, 96% of world hydrogen production comes from fossil fuels, being natural gas commonly used as raw material (>75% of production). In order to avoid the use of fossil fuels to obtain hydrogen, other raw materials are under investigation, especially those derived from solid wastes. Thus, sewage sludge, municipal solid waste, agricultural and industrial wastes are considered as potential substitutes of natural gas. These materials present an organic fraction which can be converted, usually via anaerobic digestion, into biogas (rich in methane) after upgrading. This refined biogas can be used to obtain highly pure hydrogen using different technologies.

The aim of this work is to compare the production of refined biogas using sewage sludge and municipal solid waste as carbon resource. This comparison was carried out applying the Life Cycle Assesment (LCA) methodology to produce 1 Nm3 of CH4. The subsystems considered to obtain upgraded biogas were: transport of the raw materials, digestion and upgrading plant facilities and the further application of the digested matter as fertilizer. The average composition of the raw materials was taken from the literature and the inventories of each subsystem were taken from Ecoinvent Database. Thereafter, environmental impacts of each alternative were quantified using GaBi 4.0 software. Obtained results show that the amount of sewage sludge required to obtain 1 Nm3 of CH4 is higher than that needed in the case of using municipal solid waste. Regarding environmental impacts, the most important was that produced by greenhouse gas emissions in both cases, obtaining differences depending on the raw material used.

Environmental impacts of pellets production from winery residue: A site dependent result?

Colin Jury, Guy Kneip, Viola Huck, Antonino Marvuglia, Enrico Benetto

Public Research Centre Henri Tudor, Luxembourg

In most of LCA studies the impact categories are not always selected by LCA analysts on the basis of the actual effects of the studied production process on the local scale (i.e. in the geographical contest where the activity takes place). As a consequence, if spatial differentiation is not applied, the Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA) is typically not site-specific and only sometimes site-dependent.

The LCA case study described in the paper deals with the production of pellets from grape marc. LCI data have been obtained from extensive tests at the field scale in Luxembourg. The studied system delivers two co-products: grape marc pellets and press juice. The allocation problem has been here tackled using two different methods: cut-off and system expansion. The study pointed out that the choice of the method to tackle allocation should be made on a site-specific basis.

Press juice is sold to a biogas production plant. The biogas is then burned in a CHP plant, thus producing electricity and heat. The main assumption made is that both electricity and heat produced will be totally reused, thus avoiding their local production. However, even though this assumption is realistic in the case of electricity, it is not so for the heat. The local reuse of this latter depends in fact on many factors.

The results of the study showed that an increase of the reuse rate of heat from 50% to 100% can increase the reduction of life-cycle impact on climate change from 55% to 61%. Another interesting finding concerns the choice of the energy source used for the dehydration phase of fresh marc. When part of the pellets produced are fed back to the process and used as fuel instead of natural gas or other combustibles (light oil, wood chips) the effect induced on different impact indicators is not homogeneous. The multi-criteria optimization problem has thus no dominant solution, and the choice of the “best” alternative depends on the set of impact indicators selected. In this case the use of local, site-specific indicators (such as water quality) rather than global ones (such as climate change) subverts the alternatives’ ranking.

The study suggests that the strategy for the overall evaluation of heat production from grape marc pellets has thus to involve the current handling of grape marc in Luxembourg and its global environmental impacts, but also the regional specificities concerning landscape characteristics, infrastructures, social and economic aspects.

Environmentally friendly food consumption: What does this mean?

Niels Jungbluth, Sybille Büsser, Rolf Frischknecht

ESU-services Ltd., Switzerland

Nutrition accounts for about 30% of environmental impacts caused due to the final consumption of Swiss households. It is thus the most important activity from an environmental point of view. We investigated possibilities for reducing the environmental impacts due to food consumption in dozens of LCA case studies during the past 15 years. This presentation summarizes the main findings and outlines the open research questions. Consumers can aim to reduce the environmental impacts on different levels of decision making. These range from choice of packages for a product, preference for certain labels, choice on ingredients for a meal, vegetarian diets to general consideration concerning household budgets. For an evaluation of environmental impacts it is necessary to consider a range of environmental impacts and not focus on carbon footprint alone. It is shown that most important improvements can be expected on the level of diets. Nevertheless there are also constraints that have to be considered while communicating such results to consumers. More research is considered to be necessary on the environmental impacts of different types of meals considering also ready-made and catering services. Knowledge gaps exist also concerning the impacts of open markets while considering the regional differences in agricultural production patterns. These findings also have to be taken into account while developing approaches for environmental information for products. It does not seem to be sufficient to highlight differences within narrow product categories. More important is the provision of information concerning e.g. differences between different types of diets.

The role of LCA in sustainable food procurement by a city

Niels Jungbluth, Sybille Büsser, Matthias Stucki, Rolf Frischknecht

ESU-services Ltd., Switzerland

Life cycle assessment (LCA) has proved to be a powerful tool for the environmental optimization of production processes of single products. However, it is difficult to apply detailed LCA studies to investigate several hundreds or thousands of products at once. The city of Zurich centrally organizes the procurement of about 1000 different food products for about 10’000 people in hospitals, retirement homes and other public institutions. A general aim of its policy is to reduce the environmental impacts of the governmental activities. LCA has proved to be a suitable method in order to assist this goal.

The total environmental impact of food purchases centrally organized by the city have been evaluated. The analysis of the purchases is based on data of the estimated quantity of ordered food products. These data are linked with life cycle assessment (LCA) data of food products and product groups.

Rough assumptions have been made concerning transports, packages and distribution according to the methodology developed for assessing impacts of food purchases. The agricultural production of milk is responsible for most of the environmental impacts for this product group with respect to ecological scarcity points. The evaluation on the basis of the ecological scarcity method highlights the importance of meat and dairy products for the overall impacts. Surprisingly, further products have also been identified to be relevant, e.g. the purchase of coffee because of pesticide application during its growing. The results show some differences between total environmental impacts and energy demand or GWP only. For non-renewable energy use transport services get more importance and thus influence the non-renewable energy demand of heavy goods like beverages negatively. In the ecological scarcity method pesticides used in coffee plantation have a high importance. For GWP methane emissions of cows are important in the category of dairy products.

The method developed in this project has been applied also for the food trade of a retailer and for food imports to Switzerland.

Inspiring, informing, and influencing sustainable urban planning processes through consumption based emissions inventories

Christian Solli1, Rolf Andre Bohne2, Hogne Nersund Larsen1

1MiSA AS, Norway; 2NTNU, Norway

This paper describes how a tool for household carbon footprint estimates is used in the context of urban planning to foster new ideas and approaches for low carbon solutions.

One disadvantage with many of the exisiting approaches to green community development, is the focus on transport, materials and energy (for the house). Most fail to capture the fact that the global GHG emissions are caused by a multitude of cunsumed products and services. Usually they also fail to address the rebound effect. By introducing a tool that presents the total carbon footprint of household activities split into several consumption categories, city planners are forced to expand their perspective to include what happens "between the houses", instead of merely focussing on transport, materials and energy. In addition they need to find ways to consume with less total impact and to think creatively about how city planning and architecture may influence this.

The tool has been used in a parallell urban planning competition in Trondheim, Norway. We present the tool itself and some of the creative proposals the tool helped foster. In the end the tool was also used as a way to systematically evaluate the contribution of the different teams in the competition on the basis of total household greenhouse gas reductions.

Market research to assess environmental impacts of consumer stage in food LCA

Jaime Zufía, Guillermo Pardo

AZTI-Tecnalia, Spain

In a any food product Life cycle assessment (LCA) it is necessary to include the phase of purchasing, storing, cooking and use of that product by the final consumer. However to introduce reliable data about it, it is proposed to perform a market survey to obtain statistically validated information about the percentage of consumers (in a specific area /country) that have an specific behaviour about: type of transport to purchase point; type of shop used; distance; kg purchased per trip; type of preservation used at home; time of preservation; type of cooking (microwave; oven; etc.); time of cooking, type of waste management and other related aspects.

This information can be used as the base of environmental inputs in a LCA in the food consumption stage by final consumer. To achieve this, for every behaviour, the average value is calculated. It must be taken into account that the market research involves enough number of consumers to obtain highly confident data, giving good quality to the LCA. Afterwards, the average values are transformed to LCA inputs: energy, fuel and water consumption and others. To achieve this, some conversion models and rules are used.

In this work it is presented a case study on a tray of fresh chicken breast fillets packaged in modified atmosphere, which is a commonly commercialised issue in the Spanish market. A market research has been performed to know the purchasing, cooking and manage habits of chicken consumers all over Spain. The sample size is 900 people over 18 who buy chicken once or more times a week.

The results of this research has been transformed to resource inputs that have been introduced in a LCA software (SIMAPRO) in order to complete a complete LCA that covers all the stages of production and distribution of this chicken product. The rules of conversion of market information to environmental inputs have been: average consumption of appliance obtained from technical leaflets; ECOINVENT 2.0 database and official data about waste management.

Product-oriented environmental management system (POEMS): A sustainable management framework for the food industry

Roberta Salomone1, Maria Teresa Clasadonte2, Maria Proto3, Andrea Raggi4, Ioannis Arzoumanidis4, Giuseppe Ioppolo1, Agata Lo Giudice2, Ornella Malandrino3, Agata Matarazzo2, Luigia Petti4, Giuseppe Saija1, Stefania Supino3, Alessandra Zamagni4

1University of Messina, Italy; 2University of Catania, Italy; 3University of Salerno, Italy; 4University of Pescara "G. d'Annunzio", Italy

POEMS is a new tool designed to bring together traditional environmental management systems and tools oriented to the environmental evaluation of products. The aim of this paper is to present the preliminary results of the Eco-Management for Food Project (PRIN No. 2008TXFBYT) co-funded by the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research that has the purpose to design and implement a POEMS framework for the agri-food industry in which: 1. the underlying basis is an Integrated Quality and Environmental Management System; 2. product orientation is guaranteed by a simplified methodology of Life Cycle Assessment; 3. the exploiting of environmental performance of products in terms of commercial advantages is obtained with a suitable environmental label.

Information exchange requirements for cradle to cradle implementation in an industrial setting: EoL treatment of flat screen televisions

Paul Vanegas1,2, Jef Peeters1, Dirk Cattrysse1, Joost Duflou1

1Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium; 2Universidad de Cuenca, Ecuador

The main problems when applying a C2C approach are the material recovery of discarded products and the reverse logistics of collecting and reusing these materials. The current recycling processes adopted for electrical and electronic waste are mainly focused on the recovery of structural metals. To increase the sustainability of the recycling processes it is imperative to improve the recovery rate of precious metals and polymers. These materials with a high economic and environmental value when recovered with a high purity are commonly used in electrical and electronic products.

It is mainly the process of shredding, commonly used by recycling companies, which does not allow high purity recovery of precious metals and polymers. Improvements in the processes of sorting and separation of those materials are necessary in order to make a cradle to cradle approach economically feasible. Therefore, a holistic life cycle approach in which all actors in the life cycle are involved is required. This to allow the exchange of key information of as well the product design and composition as information on the recycling processes between recycling and manufacturing companies. Within the Flemish PRIME project this cooperation is achieved through the participation of Philips, a flat screen televisions manufacturer and two recycling companies Van Gansewinkel and Umicore. Data restructuring is required to provide useful product information to these recyclers to allow intelligent sorting of products in support of selective disassembly and separation.

Describing the product composition and connections in a well structured database is a very important and initial step to allow a well optimized clustering of subsystems in function of pure material recycling using the available separation techniques. In this paper a database is presented to structure the required information of flat screen televisions. This study also describes the required product information and structure of a relational database to exchange the required information. The goal of this database is to enable an evaluation and optimization from an economical and environmental point of view of the product design and alternative end-of-life treatments.

Supporting tools for implementing LCM in SMEs.- The LiMaS Project

Juan Carlos Alonso1, Julio Rodrigo1, Noemi Canyellas1, Francisco Campo2, Ana de la Puente2, Perrine Chancerel3, Jana Rückschloss3, Karsten Schischke4

1SIMPPLE, Spain; 2IK Ingenieria, Spain; 3Berlin Institute of Technology, Germany; 4Fraunhofer Institut, Germany

Finding practical solutions to integrate environmental protection in business activities is a challenge, especially for SMEs. The main objective of the LiMaS project is to support SMEs (which manufacture energy-using products and Electrical & Electronic Equipment) in the management of the following environmental issues:

  • Environmental legislative compliance (i.e. REACh, RoHS, WEEE and Eco-Design Directive)
  • Environmental Communication (e.g. Eco-labelling alternatives)
  • Environmental Management System (i.e. relevant environmental aspects associated to the company)
  • Monitoring of hazardous substances used in products/processes
  • Environmental Assessment of products during its complete life cycle (simplified LCA)

This paper will present the up-to-date results of the project funded by EACI in the CIP-EIP-Eco-Innovation call 2008. The developed reports and supporting tools can be downloaded from the project web-site ( These tools include:

A simplified LCA software tool (EuPeco-profiler) for Energy-using products. It is available in English, German and Spanish and it is designed to:

  • Estimate the environmental impacts associated to products/processes during the complete life cycle
  • Identify, quantify and prioritise the most relevant aspects to focus the improvement efforts on them
  • Compare different design alternatives, from an environmental point of view
  • Support internal and external communication of the achieved improvements (quantitative comparison)
  • Be aligned with future implementing measures associated to ErP Directive (it uses MEEuP database)

Microsoft EXCEL applications , which are designed to give to the user a first picture about the previously mentioned environmental issues. A common initial questionnaire (about 10 questions) is used to pre-check the possible aspects that could interest the company. The data entered in this initial questionnaire is used in the more detailed tools/questionnaires as default data. These applications allow the SMEs to know:

  • If their products/processes could be affected by the mentioned legislation
  • How to manage the information associated to the hazardous substances used in products/processes
  • How to define an environmental management system to monitor and improve the relevant environmental aspects
  • The eco-labels that could apply to their products
  • The minimum information to be entered into the EuPeco-profiler (preliminary template)

These supporting tools favour the implementation of Life Cycle Thinking and Eco-Innovation into SMEs, simplifying the approach to these environmental issues and facilitating their practical use by non-environmental experts. The next steps of the LiMaS project are to develop a web application (with Eco-design information) and a web-based software tool to better implement this approach.

The CAP'EM project: Providing scientifically sound information on environmental and health impacts of construction materials, based on a common LCA methodology across 5 European countries

Jodie Kathleen Bricout1, Andrew Norton2, Christian Traisnel1

1cd2e, France; 2renuables, UK

Sustainable buildings are the fabric of sustainable lifestyles. Whilst the building industry and the general public understand the importance of energy efficency, the environmental impacts of the building materials we use remain less well known. For an average home, construction can represent around 30% of the overall greenhouse gas emissions. For an energy efficient home, the embodied energy in the construction represents more than 35 years of heating in equivalent energy. An answer to reducing this is using appropriate “ecological” building materials.

The €8.5 million CAP’EM project aims to increase the manufacture, distribution and use of eco-materials in the building industry of North West Europe (NWE), by allowing impartial and comprehensive demonstration of their benefits. A key hurdle is overcoming differences in regional and national approaches to how we define, evaluate and promote eco-materials.

CAP’EM brings together partners across five countries with a wide range of expertese to support the eco-materials sector. Cd2e, the expert centre for eco-enterprise development in Northern France is the lead partner, and VIBE (BE), GreenSpec (UK), Agrôdome (NL), HWK Münster (G) and Globe 21 (FR) have all contributed to the development of a shared Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology for evaluating the environmental impacts of building materials.

The CAP’EM method uses a transparent spreadsheet format as the calculating system and mixture of bespoke and Ecoinvent secondary data to calculate impacts from “cradle to gate”. Results for over 100 building materials will be available on-line, where, via an innovative Graphical User Interface (GUI), end users will be able to calculate and compare the impacts of different materials delivered to their own building site. Throughout 2011, the method will be applied to 100 construction materials, and the results will be freely available on the internet.

In addition to the online database, a network of eight exhibition centres will be established demonstrate the use of eco-materials, both in new build and renovation.

The majority of these centres are being developed within the context of a significant new build or renovation project using eco-construction techniques. This is intended to raise awareness among building professionals and increase demand for eco-materials.

The paper will describe how the transnational team developed of the CAP’EM simplified LCA method, guided by Dr Andrew Norton of Renuables (UK), the challenges in undertaking evalusations of 100 building materials manufactured by small businesses, the web-based tool for sharing results and the first results of the assessments.

Which packaging system for apple juice is most eco-friendly and at the same time more efficient? Eco-Efficiency analysis for apple-juice packaging

Daniela Kölsch1, Daniela Klein2, Bahar Cat-Krause1, Brigitte Achatz2, Peter Saling2

1TÜV Rheinland, Germany; 2BASF, Germany

The Eco-Efficiency Analysis case study that will be presented, compares two types of different apple juices – “from concentrated (FC)” and “not from concentrated juice (NFC)” (German: Direktsaft) – in different packaging systems for consumers. The study was carried out for the members of Verband der deutschen Fruchtsaft-Industrie e.V. (VdF) (Association of the German Fruit Juice Industry). The study was calculated by BASF in co-operation with TÜV Rheinland. The critical review was carried out by the Öko-Institut e.V., Freiburg.

The functional unit is defined as the distribution and drinking of 1 Litre apple juice in Germany. The different packaging alternatives are also taken into account and contain “not from concentrated” and “from concentrated” apple juice in liquid packaging board, glass bottles (returnable) and PET (one-way). The system boundaries include:

  • pressing of apples to juice after apples cultivation,
  • the concentration and dilution,
  • deloading and storage,
  • production of primary and secondary packaging,
  • pasteurisation,
  • filling,
  • transportation and
  • end-of-life.

The applied method is the Eco-Efficiency Analysis developed by BASF SE in Ludwigshafen. Therefore several environmental impact categories like GWP (Global Warming Potential), resource consumption, land use or water emissions were assessed and additionally life cycle costs were included.

The overall results show that the two liquid packaging boards have the lowest costs overall. They are followed by the glass alternatives and the PET options. From an environmental point of view, all alternatives show similar results. The study shows that the environmental burdens are evenly distributed across the various life cycle stages. Thus there is no life section identified with priority to be optimized. Rather, there are opportunities for improvement in different life cycle phases.

The conducted Eco-Efficiency Analysis helps all members of VdF to achieve a better understanding of their processes and environmental impacts. This study also enables the VdF members to optimize their own supply chain and manufacturing processes systematically and should therefore be considered as a starting point for further improvements.

Innovation case study of a life cycle management company

Matti Sivunen1, Juho-Kusti Kajander2, Harri Väänänen3, Jaakko Siltaloppi1, Seppo Junnila1

1Aalto University, Finland; 2Boost Brothers Inc, Finland; 3Gensoft Inc, Finland

The study of sustainability in built environment has become an important aspect of environmental research. In general, built environment uses 40 % of all global material resources. Moreover, built environment uses over 40 % of all energy and generates over 40 % of CO2 consumption. In academia the focus of sustainability research in built environment have been mostly on traditional organizations R&D and new environmental technologies. However, there is a lot of evidence to support the belief that in order to radically increase sustainability in built environment the innovation is an essential component of the change. It is essential to implement new technologies and generate business on sustainability, to, accelerate the development of sustainability in built environment. We would, however, suggest that literature and practice of innovation in the field of sustainable construction could radically be developed to achieve wider understanding.

The purpose of this paper is to construct an innovation framework for life cycle management (LCM ) of construction design. The core of the framework is developed through analysing a successful LCM business innovation case and then generalized based on general innovation theories, such as market innovation, service innovation, construction innovation, and technology diffusion. The case is a successful Finnish company, which develops construction and real estate LCM design methods, software products, and services. Company’s products minimize buildings construction and LCM costs, as well as, the overall material consumption in building designs. Interestingly, the case showed that the successful innovation process in construction industry actually contains parts of all four general innovation theories; no single theory could explain the success of the company.

The developed innovation framework for successful LCM business innovation in built environment has several advantages. First, it presents a process to generate new business from environmental and LCM technologies. Second, it guides innovation process to fulfill customer needs and, finally, it probably reduces environmental impacts. In future, construction industry specific sustainability innovation framework should be developed. Moreover, additional research should be made to evaluate ability of the product to decrease other environmental loads along with material consumptions.

New spatiotemporally resolved LCI applied to photovoltaic electricity

Didier Beloin-Saint-Pierre, Isabelle Blanc

Mines ParisTech, France

Our main goal in the development of the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology is to allow for the calculation of more realistic results. As a first step in this direction, we propose a new calculation method to obtain spatiotemporally resolved Life Cycle Inventory (LCI). Impact assessment realism can then be improved with the use of site and time specific impact factors.

Spatiotemporally defined LCIs are also a step to compare modelling results with real world observations which is what we want to do in the future. This comparison procedure will also need the evaluation of pollutant concentrations in the environment at a later stage.

The new methodology we propose is based on the Structure Path Analysis (SPA) methodology. We call it ESPA for Enhanced SPA. This means that, unlike alternative spatially resolved methods based on matrix inversion, we use series calculation instead. And so, our method shows a lower consideration of the completeness of the supply chain. However, the completeness of our analysis is usually comparable to standard LCA results since the truncation is done after the ~25th order of the series calculation. The main reason to use the SPA method relates to the need for linkage of temporal information between the different levels of the supply chain.

Which means that our method is also able to consider the modelling of moments at which an extractions or emissions occurs. The ESPA method uses temporal distributions for this purpose. Temporal distributions define the temporal links between different industrial processes and moments of extraction or emissions of each of those processes. Convolutions of those time distributions enable the linkage of temporal information throughout the supply chain. Distributions are used because they can mathematically represent discrete or continuous extractions and/or emissions. This is the simplest way we found to propagate the temporal information over the entire supply chain of the product or service we analyse.

Results from the ESPA method will be shown through the analysis of a photovoltaic electricity supply chain. We will explain how the calculation method can use different level of precision for processes definition. We will also present how new spatiotemporally resolved LCI can enable deeper analysis of the system.

Closing data gaps in LCI based on environmental IOA: A case study for German building products

Bodo Müller1, Liselotte Schebek2

1KIT, Germany; 2TU Darmstadt, Germany

LCA is used in the area of Sustainable Building to assess the full life cycle of buildings, covering impacts from performance of buildings as well as from construction materials. In Germany as in other countries, several data bases and planning tools including data for environmental impacts of construction materials exist. However, a recent survey on a data base provided by the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development revealed, that only for 42% of the building materials considered as basic for the assessment of buildings data sets were available [1].

To overcome the problem of missing data, we developed an IO-based approach to derive LCI data sets for the building sector of Germany. It is based on the German Input-output accounts from [2] which consist of 71 sectors, and on the German environmental accounts (Umweltökonomische Gesamtrechung) [3] which provides emission factors on seven airbound compounds. Due to the fact that each of the 71 sectors contains diverse products, an approach for disaggregating of sector-related emissions had to be developed. For validation of the generated IO-data sets, a comparison with the corresponding data sets of 106 building materials from the ecoinvent-database was performed. For several building products, differences in the order of more than one magnitude occur. Using statistical methods, clusters for different types of building products were analyzed in order to identify reasons for deviations. Results and consequences for application of IO-based LCI will be discussed in detail.

[1] Kreissig, J., Binder, M.: Aktualisieren, Fortschreiben und Harmonisieren von Basisdaten für das Nachhaltige Bauen. Leinfelden-Echterdingen: PE International, 2007

[2] Federal Statistical Office (Ed.): Volkswirtschaftliche Gesamtrechnungen - Input-Output Rechnung 2003. Fachserie 18 / Reihe 2, Wiesbaden: Statistisches Bundesamt, 2007

[3] Federal Statistical Office (Ed.): Umweltnutzung und Wirtschaft – Tabellen zu den Umweltökonomischen Gesamtrechnungen, Wiesbaden: Statistisches Bundesamt, 2006

Comparative prices of dry-cell portable batteries of carbon zinc (environmental unsound) and alkaline manganese (environmental sound) chemical systems in a developing country: Case of Yaoundé, Cameroon, Africa

Samuel Tetsopgang1,2

1CREPD, Cameroon; 2The University of Bamenda, Cameroon

Dry-cell portable batteries of types D, C, AAA, AA, type-123, type 9-volt are found in the domestic waste in Cameroon. These batteries present on the market are used to power small cordless instruments such as radios, torches, remote controls, toys and cameras as well. They belong to different chemicals systems such as carbon zinc, alkaline, Lithium, and NiMH. In fact, all batteries in the carbon zinc system are suspected to contain some amounts of heavy metals such as mercury, lead and cadmium. These batteries are considered to be environmental unfriendly. In contrast with batteries of alkaline system which are heavy-metals free and are considered to be environmental sound. In fact, carbon zinc batteries were phased out many years ago in most developed countries and are nowadays mostly found in market and waste in the developing countries.

Then, portable dry-cell batteries of carbon zinc system (environmental unsound) have as alternative those of alkaline system (environmental sound). Comparative prizes showed the an unit of carbon zinc batteries of type AAA costs almost 7 times more expensive than the unit of that of alkaline system. A unit of batteries of type AA costs 8, 20 and even though 24 times more expensive than that of the carbon zinc system, depending on the trademarks. Then, the cost for each type of dry-cell portable batteries of alkaline system (environmental sound) is many folds more expensive that that of carbon zinc system (environmental unsound). In fact, portable dry-cell batteries of carbon zinc and alkaline systems represent 98 % and 01 %, respectively, of waste portable batteries found in domestic waste in Yaoundé, Cameroon. Then, in a developing country such as Cameroon where most consumers are poor, the cheap environmental unsound batteries are most present compare to the very expensive environmental sound batteries.

Comparison of life cycle inventory (LCI) methods for Carbon Footprint calculation – the case of pulp and paper sector in Spain

Eskinder Demisse Gemechu, Isabela Butnar, Javier Recari, Maria José Amores Barrero, Francesc Castells

Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Spain

Greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions induced by human activities are the major causes of climate change. The unsustainable production and consumption patterns are the main driver behind it. Despite being on the policy agenda since the first earth summit in 1992, the reduction of emissions caused by production and consumption is too slow as most policy instruments are usually created without regard to the environmental impact of individual agents and productive sectors. Imposing an environmental tax which reflects the true costs of products and services could be a way to influence both producers and consumers to alter their behavior and to move a step forward to sustainability. Environmental tax should be proportional to products’ carbon footprint and should reveal their true costs by internalizing all the external loads to the environment and to the society that are not included in their price. The main challenge is how to estimate the carbon footprint of each product or service in the economy. There are different methods to assess carbon footprint, such as process based life cycle analysis (LCA), Environmental Input-Output (EIO) and Hybrid IOLCA models. Each method has its own strength and weakness compared with others considering criteria of data requirements, source data uncertainty, upstream and downstream system boundary consideration, time and labor intensity, and so on. In this paper we investigate the most relevant approach from environmental tax introduction point of view. Main products of pulp and paper production sector of the Spanish economy are analyzed using different methods (LCA, EIO commodities approach, EIO sectorial approach, tiered hybrid IOLCA and integrated hybrid IOLCA) and results are compared. The policy implication of results from different approaches is assessed.

Computation of operational and environmental benchmarks for dairy farms through the five-step LCA+DEA method

Diego Iribarren1, Almudena Hospido2, M Teresa Moreira2, Gumersindo Feijoo2

1Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies in Energy (IMDEA Energy Institute), Spain; 2University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) are two common management tools. While LCA is an internationally standardized methodology to assess the environmental aspects and potential impacts associated with a product, DEA is a linear programming methodology used to quantify in an empirical manner the comparative productive efficiency of multiple similar entities. The joint application of both techniques has been recently proposed as a five-step approach aimed at providing an eco-efficiency verification tool that relies on the quantification of operational benchmarks in order to determine the associated environmental targets for multiple homogenous units (Lozano et al. 2009; Vázquez-Rowe et al. 2010).

Galicia (NW Spain) produces over 2 million tonnes of raw milk per year, providing more than 37% of the Spanish dairy farming production, and ca. 1.3% of the European milk production rate. This study deals with the use of the five-step LCA+DEA method over a wide sample of dairy farms located in Galicia. Throughout this case study, (i) efficient farms were identified from an operational perspective, (ii) operational targets were established for the inefficient facilities, (iii) and the corresponding environmental benchmarks were computed. Thus, total operational reductions of up to 38% were found, leading to environmental impact reductions above 20% for every impact category subject to evaluation. The suitability of this LCA+DEA approach to prevent standard deviations linked to the formulation of an average farm is highlighted. Moreover, the usefulness of this method to facilitate the estimation of the economic gains related to efficient farming practices is also emphasized.


Lozano S, Iribarren D, Moreira MT, Feijoo G. The link between operational efficiency and environmental impacts. A joint application of Life Cycle Assessment and Data Envelopment Analysis. Sci Total Environ 2009;407:1744-54.

Vázquez-Rowe I, Iribarren D, Moreira MT, Feijoo G. Combined application of Life Cycle Assessment and Data Envelopment Analysis as a methodological approach for the assessment of fisheries. Int J Life Cycle Ass 2010;15:272-83.

Developing a method of assessment for events considering sustainability

Noriko Matsunaga, Norihiro Itsubo

Tokyo City University, Japan

“ISO20121” promoting the sustainable management of event is now under standardization. Sustainability can be expressed by three aspects of economy environment and society as triple bottom line.

Generally, economic ripple effects have been widely applied to evaluate events.And environmental aspects have been paid attention in a number of recent events currently. However these assessment are independent from economic assessment.It is needed to develop a tool assessing environmental, economic and social aspects at the same time.And in the event evaluation a lot of time and labor are needed for using so much data in a short period. Therefore, the developments of the database and the evaluation tools are needed that can efficiently calculate the results evaluated.

And, it is expected an index using the result of the environment, economy, and the social aspects that shows the secular change and comparison of the evaluation results for various scale of the event.Here we develop a methodology of sustainability assessment in event LCA that covers the three aspects of triple bottom line. And we adopted CO2 emission, economic ripple effects and the employment effect as indicators for environment, economy and society respectively.First, databases are made for environmental impact, economic ripple effect, and employment effect.The environmental impact basic units are collected from 3EID in 2005.Coefficients for the economic ripple effect and the employment effect are made from I/O table and the employment table in 2005.And, the database as demand for each section generated by one unit is made for coefficients above. As a result, the value in the service industry is high in economic ripple effect, while the value in the manufacturing industry is high in employment effect.Next, the case study for events were performed based on the database made. Moreover, evaluations are made for the event with different elements of the scale, the number of visitors, and the place held.Finally, the eco-efficiency index for the event by the constituents was made. The eco-efficiency was defined environment impact divided by economic ripple effect.The result shows , the value of the eco-efficiency became high in the organizer section where a lot of staff labors cost high, while the value of the eco-efficiency of the utility section became a low result.The secular change is visible by expressing the result quantitatively, and the room for improvement of each section became clearly.

As a future task, an event evaluating tool simply enforceable based on the database will be made.

Ecological Footprint evaluation of Japanese domestic food consumption considering Water Footprint

Naoki Yoshikawa, Koji Amano, Koji Shimada

Ritsumeikan University (Rits Univ.), Japan

Ecological footprint (EF) is widely used for sustainability assessment of human activities because of its comprehensiveness and understandability. However, conventional EF lacks some important environmental load; for example, water resource use and water pollution. This study proposes an ecological footprint indicator which considers water footprint, and evaluates Japanese domestic food consumption as a case study. The new EF calculates impacts of water use to convert the quantity to land area by coefficient of scarcity of water resource relative to its land area in each area where water is used. EF of water can duplicate on other land category (cropland & pasture, forest, built-up land, carbon footprint) other than fishery because these category of land area can potentially perform as water catchment area. Thus total EF is estimated by eliminating the duplication.

EF of Japanese food consumption is calculated based on statistical data. LC-CO2 emission data is estimated by I-O analysis in food production, and also considered food transportation. Conversion factors related to water EF estimation are developed by countries because 60% of Japan’s food supply relies on international trade. As the results, Ecological footprint of Japanese domestic food consumption is about 7 times of Japanese land area, and 1.5 times other than fishing ground. Water EF of exceed EF of other land category abroad, otherwise it is below in domestic footprint. Evaluating by new EF indicator, Japanese food supply relies its 51% of environmental load on food production and transportation abroad. The future EF of Japanese food consumption could increase than present and reduce its dependence abroad if future “desirable” scenario that food self-sufficiency ratio will improve in 2015.

Ecological and life cycle evaluation of bio-ethanol production from rice straw as a green energy alternative for Sri Lanka

Disni Sanjeewani Gamlath, Sohei Shimada

The University of Tokyo, Japan, Japan

Sri Lanka is having a rapid rate of development after the disastrous period due to war inside the country. So the need of new clean technologies using Sri Lanka’s resources is essential to minimize the dependency on fossil fuel. A renewable alternative fuel production inside the country which can replace diesel and petrol is highly concerned. Bio-ethanol production from rice straw has a higher potential for Sri Lanka due to highly availability of rice straw as a waste, doesn't competing with increasing food prices and arable land usage issues and inexpensive to produce in large quantities.

Although ethanol production from rice straw is very much important to Sri Lanka, the decision making stage is very unstable to establish production plants inside the country due to lack of knowledge and less awareness of responsible bodies like public and government officials about the use of ethanol as a fuel as there aren't much research have been carried out to identify suitability and potential of ethanol as a fuel for Sri Lanka.

So, main objective of this research is to evaluate the suitability of bio-ethanol production from rice straw for Sri Lanka with aiming to provide guidelines for decision makers. Assessing the life cycle and footprint of the process (especially water footprint) to discuss sustainability aspects of the process is the methodology.

A literature survey has been carried out to gather necessary data from four bio-ethanol production plants in Hokkaido, Hyogo and Chiba prefectures in Japan which use rice straw as the raw material and adjusted the data for the Sri Lanka situation. In this research, two calculation methods are used, SimaPro software for life cycle assessment calculation and SPIonExcel software for ecological evaluation. With gathered details calculations have been performed using SimaPro and SPIonExcel software for several stages of the process.

Making progress on calculation from both software and analyzing the results to achieve the objectives of the research are current concerns. Also discuss the results obtained to validate the research activities to provide conclusions and recommendations as a support for decision makers to lead Sri Lanka with implementing green and renewable energies to achieve sustainability is targeted.