Advanced search
1 file | 468.89 KB Add to list

Exergy-based accounting for land as a natural resource in life cycle assessment

Author
Organization
Abstract
Purpose: In life cycle assessment (LCA), literature suggests accounting for land as a resource either by what it delivers (e.g., biomass content) or the time and space needed to produce biomass (land occupation), in order to avoid double-counting. This paper proposes and implements a new framework to calculate exergy-based spatial explicit characterization factors (CF) for land as a resource, which deals with both biomass and area occupied on the global scale. Methods: We created a schematic overview of the Earth, dividing it into two systems (human-made and natural), making it possible to account for what is actually extracted from nature, i.e., the biomass content was set as the elementary flow to be accounted at natural systems and the land occupation (through the potential natural net primary production) was set as the elementary flow at human-made systems. Through exergy, we were able to create CF for land resources for these two different systems. The relevancy of the new CF was tested for a number of biobased products. Results and discussion: Site-generic CF were created for land as a resource for natural systems providing goods to humans, and site-generic and site-dependent CF (at grid, region, country, and continent level) were created for land as a resource within human-made systems. This framework differed from other methods in the sense of accounting for both land occupation and biomass content but without double-counting. It is set operationally for LCA and able to account for land resources with more completeness, allowing spatial differentiation. When site-dependent CF were considered for land resources, the overall resource consumption of certain products increased up to 77 % in comparison with site-generic CF-based data. Conclusions: This paper clearly distinguished the origin of the resource (natural or human-made systems), allowing consistent accounting for land as a resource. Site-dependent CF for human-made systems allowed spatial differentiation, which was not considered in other resource accounting life cycle impact assessment methods.
Keywords
Exergy, Biomass, Land, LCA, NPP, Resource, NET PRIMARY PRODUCTION, IMPACT ASSESSMENT, BIOMASS, UNCERTAINTY, VARIABILITY, ECOSYSTEMS, FORESTS

Downloads

  • (...).pdf
    • full text
    • |
    • UGent only
    • |
    • PDF
    • |
    • 468.89 KB

Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
Freitas de Alvarenga, Rodrigo, Jo Dewulf, Herman Van Langenhove, et al. “Exergy-based Accounting for Land as a Natural Resource in Life Cycle Assessment.” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT 18.5 (2013): 939–947. Print.
APA
Freitas de Alvarenga, R., Dewulf, J., Van Langenhove, H., & Huijbregts, M. (2013). Exergy-based accounting for land as a natural resource in life cycle assessment. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT, 18(5), 939–947.
Chicago author-date
Freitas de Alvarenga, Rodrigo, Jo Dewulf, Herman Van Langenhove, and Mark Huijbregts. 2013. “Exergy-based Accounting for Land as a Natural Resource in Life Cycle Assessment.” International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 18 (5): 939–947.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Freitas de Alvarenga, Rodrigo, Jo Dewulf, Herman Van Langenhove, and Mark Huijbregts. 2013. “Exergy-based Accounting for Land as a Natural Resource in Life Cycle Assessment.” International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 18 (5): 939–947.
Vancouver
1.
Freitas de Alvarenga R, Dewulf J, Van Langenhove H, Huijbregts M. Exergy-based accounting for land as a natural resource in life cycle assessment. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT. 2013;18(5):939–47.
IEEE
[1]
R. Freitas de Alvarenga, J. Dewulf, H. Van Langenhove, and M. Huijbregts, “Exergy-based accounting for land as a natural resource in life cycle assessment,” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT, vol. 18, no. 5, pp. 939–947, 2013.
@article{4109211,
  abstract     = {Purpose: In life cycle assessment (LCA), literature suggests accounting for land as a resource either by what it delivers (e.g., biomass content) or the time and space needed to produce biomass (land occupation), in order to avoid double-counting. This paper proposes and implements a new framework to calculate exergy-based spatial explicit characterization factors (CF) for land as a resource, which deals with both biomass and area occupied on the global scale.
Methods: We created a schematic overview of the Earth, dividing it into two systems (human-made and natural), making it possible to account for what is actually extracted from nature, i.e., the biomass content was set as the elementary flow to be accounted at natural systems and the land occupation (through the potential natural net primary production) was set as the elementary flow at human-made systems. Through exergy, we were able to create CF for land resources for these two different systems. The relevancy of the new CF was tested for a number of biobased products.
Results and discussion: Site-generic CF were created for land as a resource for natural systems providing goods to humans, and site-generic and site-dependent CF (at grid, region, country, and continent level) were created for land as a resource within human-made systems. This framework differed from other methods in the sense of accounting for both land occupation and biomass content but without double-counting. It is set operationally for LCA and able to account for land resources with more completeness, allowing spatial differentiation. When site-dependent CF were considered for land resources, the overall resource consumption of certain products increased up to 77 % in comparison with site-generic CF-based data.
Conclusions: This paper clearly distinguished the origin of the resource (natural or human-made systems), allowing consistent accounting for land as a resource. Site-dependent CF for human-made systems allowed spatial differentiation, which was not considered in other resource accounting life cycle impact assessment methods.},
  author       = {Freitas de Alvarenga, Rodrigo and Dewulf, Jo and Van Langenhove, Herman and Huijbregts, Mark},
  issn         = {1614-7502},
  journal      = {INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT},
  keywords     = {Exergy,Biomass,Land,LCA,NPP,Resource,NET PRIMARY PRODUCTION,IMPACT ASSESSMENT,BIOMASS,UNCERTAINTY,VARIABILITY,ECOSYSTEMS,FORESTS},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {5},
  pages        = {939--947},
  title        = {Exergy-based accounting for land as a natural resource in life cycle assessment},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11367-013-0555-7},
  volume       = {18},
  year         = {2013},
}

Altmetric
View in Altmetric
Web of Science
Times cited: