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Peters, G., Harder, R., Arvidsson, R., Baumann, H., Björklund, A., Despeisse, M., . . . Wallbaum, H. (2019). A Swedish comment on ‘review: the availability of life-cycle studies in Sweden’. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A Swedish comment on ‘review: the availability of life-cycle studies in Sweden’
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2019 (English)In: The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, ISSN 0948-3349, E-ISSN 1614-7502Article in journal (Refereed) In press
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Verlag, 2019
Keywords
Academic publication, Bibliographic studies, Google, GRI, Peer-review, Scopus
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-252243 (URN)10.1007/s11367-019-01610-0 (DOI)2-s2.0-85063188357 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC20190614

Available from: 2019-06-14 Created: 2019-06-14 Last updated: 2019-06-14Bibliographically approved
Liljenström, C., Toller, S., Åkerman, J. & Björklund, A. (2019). Annual climate impact and primary energy use of Swedish transport infrastructure. European Journal of Transport and Infrastructure Research, 19(2), 77-+
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Annual climate impact and primary energy use of Swedish transport infrastructure
2019 (English)In: European Journal of Transport and Infrastructure Research, ISSN 1567-7133, E-ISSN 1567-7141, Vol. 19, no 2, p. 77-+Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

By 2045, Sweden is to have zero net emissions of greenhouse gases. To reach this goal, stakeholders involved in planning and construction of Swedish transport infrastructure aim to half their climate impact by 2030. Planning for emission reduction measures require network level studies showing environmental impacts of the infrastructure network. Previous studies do not allow assessment of current hotspots in the infrastructure network, which limits their relevance for decision-support in this question. The aim of this paper is to assess the current annual climate impact and primary energy use of Swedish transport infrastructure by using a methodological approach based on life cycle assessment. The scope includes new construction and management (operation, maintenance, and reinvestment) of existing roads, railways, airports, ports, and fairway channels. The annual climate impact was estimated to 2.8 million tonnes carbon dioxide equivalents and the annual primary energy use was estimated to 27 terawatt hours. Mainly road and rail infrastructure contributed to these impacts. Environmental hotspots of the infrastructure network were management of the infrastructure stock (particularly reinvestment of road and rail infrastructure) and material production (particularly production of asphalt, steel, and concrete). If climate targets are to be met, these areas are particularly important to address. Additional research on impacts of small construction measures, the size of biogenic carbon emissions (in standing biomass as well as soil carbon), and the use and impacts of asphalt for road construction and management would further increase the understanding of impacts related to Swedish transport infrastructure at the network level.

Keywords
climate impact, energy use, life cycle assessment, network level, Sweden, transport infrastructure
National Category
Other Environmental Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-255372 (URN)000474896700001 ()2-s2.0-85071697384 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20190730

Available from: 2019-07-30 Created: 2019-07-30 Last updated: 2019-10-04Bibliographically approved
Joyce, P. J. & Björklund, A. (2019). Using Life Cycle Thinking to Assess the Sustainability Benefits of Complex Valorization Pathways for Bauxite Residue. Journal of Sustainable Metallurgy, 5(1), 69-84
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Using Life Cycle Thinking to Assess the Sustainability Benefits of Complex Valorization Pathways for Bauxite Residue
2019 (English)In: Journal of Sustainable Metallurgy, ISSN 2199-3823, Vol. 5, no 1, p. 69-84Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Bauxite residue, the main waste product of alumina production, is a potentially valuable secondary resource. The MSCA-ETN REDMUD project aims to develop environmentally friendly technologies to realize this value, by extracting valuable metals (aluminium, iron, titanium, scandium, rare-earth elements) or utilizing it in construction applications. Simply utilizing a waste product as an input is not, however, sufficient to claim that a process is environmentally friendly; the processes developed must be demonstrably better for the environment, from a life cycle perspective, than business as usual. The earlier in the research and development process that environmental information can be taken into account, the more impact it can have on decision-making. In this study we demonstrate that Life Cycle Thinking approaches can provide actionable environmental information at an early stage in the research process, and that in doing so it can help steer early stage technology development towards overall improved industry environmental performance. Knowledge of the potential environmental benefit from displacing different materials can help identify primary or additional targets, for example the use of metal extraction residues for construction materials. A high-level 'red flags' assessment of the relative environmental impact of inputs to valorization processes and the products they displace can be used to identify problematic inputs and processes in the absence of quantitative details. Finally, once preliminary quantitative data are available for a process, streamlined Life Cycle Assessment can be used to calculate the environmental balance of a process, and identify specific hotspots of environmental impact.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2019
Keywords
Bauxite residue, Red mud, Valorization, Sustainability, Life Cycle Thinking, Life Cycle Assessment
National Category
Metallurgy and Metallic Materials
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-245899 (URN)10.1007/s40831-019-00209-x (DOI)000458966400006 ()2-s2.0-85062424966 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20190312

Available from: 2019-03-12 Created: 2019-03-12 Last updated: 2019-03-12Bibliographically approved
Joyce, P. J., Hertel, T., Goronovski, A., Tkaczyk, A. H., Pontikes, Y. & Björklund, A. (2018). Identifying hotspots of environmental impact in the development of novel inorganic polymer paving blocks from bauxite residue. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 138, 87-98
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Identifying hotspots of environmental impact in the development of novel inorganic polymer paving blocks from bauxite residue
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2018 (English)In: Resources, Conservation and Recycling, ISSN 0921-3449, E-ISSN 1879-0658, Vol. 138, p. 87-98Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

High bauxite residue content inorganic polymer paving blocks have the potential not only to provide a solution to the ongoing waste management issues faced by the alumina sector, but to simultaneously provide low environmental impact building materials to the construction sector. In order to realise the potential of this emerging technology, it is important to understand where the hotspots of environmental impact are likely to occur, and identify routes to reduce this impact, at an early stage of development. In this study we use anticipatory Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) to identify hotspots of environmental impact in the production of paving blocks made from inorganic polymers derived from bauxite residue. This technology has only been demonstrated at laboratory scale; however, production was modelled at industrial scale. The bauxite residue is fired in a rotary kiln in the presence of a carbon and silica source, in order to create a reactive precursor. When mixed with an alkali the precursor forms a solid block. Our results identify the firing process as the major hotspot of environmental impact, primarily due to the combustion of fossil fuels in the rotary kiln. Steps to reduce the impact of the firing step or to reduce the amount of fired precursor used in the final paving block are suggested as routes for future impact reduction. Optimisation of the environmental aspects of these building materials at an early stage in their development could lead to a promising future for high-volume bauxite residue valorisation at low environmental cost.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2018
Keywords
Life cycle assessment, Inorganic polymers, Bauxite residue, Secondary resources, Waste management, Waste valorisation
National Category
Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-235551 (URN)10.1016/j.resconrec.2018.07.006 (DOI)000444789400010 ()2-s2.0-85050227042 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20181002

Available from: 2018-10-02 Created: 2018-10-02 Last updated: 2018-11-30Bibliographically approved
Goronovski, A., Joyce, P. J., Björklund, A., Finnveden, G. & Tkaczyk, A. H. (2018). Impact assessment of enhanced exposure from Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORM) within LCA. Journal of Cleaner Production, 172, 2824-2839
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Impact assessment of enhanced exposure from Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORM) within LCA
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2018 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 172, p. 2824-2839Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The potential impact of ionising radiation from enhanced exposure to Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORM) to humans and the environment is not currently accounted for sufficiently in Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). Here we present midpoint and endpoint characterisation factors resulting from the implementation of impact assessment models for human health and ecosystems for NORM exposure. These models build upon existing fate, exposure and effect models from the LCA and radiological literature. The newly developed models are applied to a theoretical study of the utilisation of bauxite residue, a by-product of alumina processing enriched in natural radionuclides, in building materials. The ecosystem models have significant sensitivity to uncertainties surrounding the differential environmental fate of parent and daughter radionuclides that are produced as a part of decay chains, and to assumptions regarding long term releases from landfill sites. However, conservative results for environmental exposure suggest that in addition to landfill of materials, power consumption (burning coal and mining uranium) is a potentially significant source of radiological impact to the environment. From a human perspective, exposure to NORM in the use phase of building materials is the dominant source of impact, with environmental releases of nuclides playing a comparatively minor role. At an endpoint level, the impact of NORM exposure is highly significant in comparison to other impact categories in the area of protection of human health. The dose increase is of an order of magnitude comparable to lifestyle factors. The results highlight the importance within LCA of having sufficient impact assessment models to capture all potential impacts, such that issues of burden shifting between impact measures can be captured, interpreted and resolved in the optimisation of product systems.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2018
Keywords
Bauxite residue, Burden shifting, Construction materials, LCA impact category, NORM, Agronomy, Economics, Elongation, Environmental impact, Environmental management, Fertilizers, Gas emissions, Grain growth, Greenhouse gases, Information management, Nitrogen, Nitrogen compounds, Nitrogen fertilizers, Proteins, Sustainable development, Urea, Energy indexes, GHG emission, Grain quality, N fertilizers, Triticum, Grain (agricultural product)
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-223168 (URN)10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.11.131 (DOI)000423002200135 ()2-s2.0-85038867547 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20180912

Available from: 2018-02-28 Created: 2018-02-28 Last updated: 2018-11-22Bibliographically approved
La Rosa, A. D., Blanco, I., Banatao, D. R., Pastine, S. J., Björklund, A. & Cicala, G. (2018). Innovative chemical process for recycling thermosets cured with recyclamines® by converting bio-epoxy composites in reusable thermoplastic-an LCA study. Materials, 11(3), Article ID 353.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Innovative chemical process for recycling thermosets cured with recyclamines® by converting bio-epoxy composites in reusable thermoplastic-an LCA study
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2018 (English)In: Materials, ISSN 1996-1944, E-ISSN 1996-1944, Vol. 11, no 3, article id 353Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

An innovative recycling process for thermoset polymer composites developed by Connora Technologies (Hayward, CA, USA) was studied. The process efficacy has already been tested, and it is currently working at the plant level. The main aspect investigated in the present paper was the environmental impact by means of the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) method. Because of the need to recycle and recover materials at their end of life, the Connora process creates a great innovation in the market of epoxy composites, as they are notoriously not recyclable. Connora Technologies developed a relatively gentle chemical recycling process that induces the conversion of thermosets into thermoplastics. The LCA demonstrated that low environmental burdens are associated with the process itself and, furthermore, impacts are avoided due to the recovery of the epoxy-composite constituents (fibres and matrix). A carbon fibre (CF) epoxy-composite panel was produced through Vacuum Resin Transfer Moulding (VRTM) and afterwards treated using the Connora recycling process. The LCA results of both the production and the recycling phases are reported.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
MDPI AG, 2018
Keywords
Epoxy recovery, LCA, Polymer recycling, Vacuum Resin Transfer Moulding, Carbon, Carbon fibers, Environmental impact, Life cycle, Molding, Recovery, Recycling, Reinforced plastics, Resin transfer molding, Resins, Thermosets, Chemical process, Chemical recycling, Environmental burdens, Epoxy composite, Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), Recycling process, Thermoset polymers, Epoxy resins
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-227430 (URN)10.3390/ma11030353 (DOI)000427767200023 ()2-s2.0-85042732228 (Scopus ID)
Note

Export Date: 9 May 2018; Article; Correspondence Address: La Rosa, A.D.; Department of Civil Engineering and Architecture and INSTM UdR, University of Catania, Viale A. Doria 6, Italy; email: dlarosa@unict.it. QC 20180528

Available from: 2018-05-28 Created: 2018-05-28 Last updated: 2018-06-25Bibliographically approved
Ekener, E., Björklund, A. & Finnveden, G. (2018). Integrating sustainability in research.. In: : . Paper presented at Annual International Sustainable Campus Network Conference. Stocholm.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Integrating sustainability in research.
2018 (English)Conference paper, Poster (with or without abstract) (Other academic)
National Category
Environmental Management
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-250587 (URN)
Conference
Annual International Sustainable Campus Network Conference. Stocholm
Note

QC 20190625

Available from: 2019-04-30 Created: 2019-04-30 Last updated: 2019-06-25Bibliographically approved
Tasala Gradin, K., Poulikidou, S., Björklund, A. & Luttropp, C. (2018). Scrutinising the electric vehicle material backpack. Journal of Cleaner Production, 172, 1699-1710
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Scrutinising the electric vehicle material backpack
2018 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 172, p. 1699-1710Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Conventionally the use phase of a road vehicle contributes to more than 70% of the total environmental impact in terms of energy use or emissions of greenhouse gases. This figure is no longer valid concerning electric vehicles and a shift to other life cycle stages and impacts is expected and should be re-evaluated. The goal of this study is to assess the environmental performance of two prototype vehicle drivetrains; an internal combustion engine and an electric motor, from a life cycle perspective. The assessment is performed in a qualitative manner using the Environmentally Responsible Product Assessment (ERPA) matrix. The two vehicles in this study have similar car body construction, providing an excellent opportunity to highlight the significance of material differences in their drivetrains. The internal combustion vehicle demonstrated a better environmental performance in three out of five lifecycle stages (pre-manufacture, product manufacture, and disposal). In all of these stages, the impact of the electric vehicle is determined by the burden of the materials needed for this technology such as rare earth elements (REE) and by the lack of recycling possibilities. The study demonstrated a need to close the material cycle when it comes to Critical Raw Materials (CRM) such as REE which can only be achieved when the technology but also the incentives for material recovery are provided, i.e. by promoting the development of cost-efficient recycling technologies. Moreover, the need for relevant metrics and assessment indicators is demonstrated to be able to compare the two technologies fairly.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ELSEVIER SCI LTD, 2018
Keywords
environmentally Responsible Product, Assessment, Internal combustion engine vehicle, Electric vehicle, Critical raw materials, Rare earth elements, Drivetrain
National Category
Environmental Management
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-222427 (URN)10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.12.035 (DOI)000423002200037 ()2-s2.0-85038830921 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20180218

Available from: 2018-02-28 Created: 2018-02-28 Last updated: 2019-02-19Bibliographically approved
Arushanyan, Y., Björklund, A., Eriksson, O., Finnveden, G., Soderman, M. L., Sundqvist, J.-O. & Stenmarck, A. (2017). Environmental Assessment of Possible Future Waste Management Scenarios. Energies, 10(2), Article ID 247.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Environmental Assessment of Possible Future Waste Management Scenarios
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2017 (English)In: Energies, ISSN 1996-1073, E-ISSN 1996-1073, Vol. 10, no 2, article id 247Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Waste management has developed in many countries and will continue to do so. Changes towards increased recovery of resources in order to meet climate targets and for society to transition to a circular economy are important driving forces. Scenarios are important tools for planning and assessing possible future developments and policies. This paper presents a comprehensive life cycle assessment (LCA) model for environmental assessments of scenarios and waste management policy instruments. It is unique by including almost all waste flows in a country and also allow for including waste prevention. The results show that the environmental impacts from future waste management scenarios in Sweden can differ a lot. Waste management will continue to contribute with environmental benefits, but less so in the more sustainable future scenarios, since the surrounding energy and transportation systems will be less polluting and also because less waste will be produced. Valuation results indicate that climate change, human toxicity and resource depletion are the most important environmental impact categories for the Swedish waste management system. Emissions of fossil CO2 from waste incineration will continue to be a major source of environmental impacts in these scenarios. The model is used for analyzing environmental impacts of several policy instruments including weight based collection fee, incineration tax, a resource tax and inclusion of waste in a green electricity certification system. The effect of the studied policy instruments in isolation are in most cases limited, suggesting that stronger policy instruments as well as combinations are necessary to reach policy goals as set out in for example the EU action plan on circular economy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
MDPI AG, 2017
Keywords
waste management, life cycle assessment (LCA), environmental assessment, scenario assessment, waste policy assessment
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-205135 (URN)10.3390/en10020247 (DOI)000395469200101 ()2-s2.0-85030786958 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20170412

Available from: 2017-04-12 Created: 2017-04-12 Last updated: 2017-11-29Bibliographically approved
Karlsson, C., Miliutenko, S., Björklund, A., Mörtberg, U., Olofsson, B. & Toller, S. (2017). Life cycle assessment in road infrastructure planning using spatial geological data. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 22(8), 1302-1317
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Life cycle assessment in road infrastructure planning using spatial geological data
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2017 (English)In: The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, ISSN 0948-3349, E-ISSN 1614-7502, Vol. 22, no 8, p. 1302-1317Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose: The purpose of the study was to outline and demonstrate a new geographic information system (GIS)-based approach for utilising spatial geological data in three dimensions (i.e. length, width and depth) to improve estimates on earthworks during early stages of road infrastructure planning. Methods: This was undertaken by using three main methodological steps: mass balance calculation, life cycle inventory analysis and spatial mapping of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy use. The mass balance calculation was undertaken in a GIS environment using two assumptions of geological stratigraphy for two proposed alternative road corridors in Sweden. The estimated volumes of excavated soil, blasted rock and filling material were later multiplied with the GHG emission and energy use factors for these processes, to create spatial data and maps in order to show potential impacts of the studied road corridors. The proposed GIS-based approach was evaluated by comparing with actual values received after one alternative was constructed. Results and discussion: The results showed that the estimate of filling material was the most accurate (about 9 % deviation from actual values), while the estimate for excavated soil and blasted rock resulted in about 38 and 80 % deviation, respectively, from the actual values. It was also found that the total volume of excavated and ripped soils did not change when accounting for stratigraphy. Conclusions: The conclusion of this study was that more information regarding embankment height and actual soil thickness would further improve the model, but the proposed GIS-based approach shows promising results for usage in LCA at an early stage of road infrastructure planning. Thus, by providing better data quality, GIS in combination with LCA can enable planning for a more sustainable transport infrastructure.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2017
Keywords
Energy, Geology, GHG emissions, GIS, LCA, Mass balance, Road, Stratigraphy
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Land and Water Resources Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-197305 (URN)10.1007/s11367-016-1241-3 (DOI)000405292800012 ()2-s2.0-85010809681 (Scopus ID)
Funder
Swedish Research Council FormasStandUp
Note

QC 20170118

Available from: 2016-12-01 Created: 2016-12-01 Last updated: 2017-08-02Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-5535-6368

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