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Revision and Extension of Eco-LCA Metrics for Sustainability Assessment of the Energy and Chemical Processes

Environmental Science & Technology, 2013 Dec 17, Vol.47(24), pp.14450-14458 [Peer Reviewed Journal]

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  • Title:
    Revision and Extension of Eco-LCA Metrics for Sustainability Assessment of the Energy and Chemical Processes
  • Author: Yang, Sy ; Yang, Sy ; Kraslawski, A ; Qian, Y
  • Found In: Environmental Science & Technology, 2013 Dec 17, Vol.47(24), pp.14450-14458 [Peer Reviewed Journal]
  • Subjects: Chemical Phenomena ; Conservation of Natural Resources ; Ecosystem ; Energy-Generating Resources
  • Language: English
  • Description: Ecologically based life cycle assessment (Eco-LCA) is an appealing approach for the evaluation of resources utilization and environmental impacts of the process industries from an ecological scale. However, the aggregated metrics of Eco-LCA suffer from some drawbacks: the environmental impact metric has limited applicability; the resource utilization metric ignores indirect consumption; the renewability metric fails to address the quantitative distinction of resources availability; the productivity metric seems self-contradictory. In this paper, the existing Eco-LCA metrics are revised and extended for sustainability assessment of the energy and chemical processes. A new Eco-LCA metrics system is proposed, including four independent dimensions: environmental impact, resource utilization, resource availability, and economic effectiveness. An illustrative example of comparing assessment between a gas boiler and a solar boiler process provides insight into the features of the proposed approach....
  • Identifier: ISSN: 0013-936X ; DOI: 10.1021/es403987k

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