Article

Environmental impacts of disposable cups with special focus on the effect of material choices and end of life

Authors:
To read the full-text of this research, you can request a copy directly from the authors.

Abstract

Life cycle thinking is emphasised in EU policies and legislation. All products have environmental impacts during their production, use and disposal. It is important to ensure that environmental impacts are considered throughout the life-cycle and it will be more and more important for the industry to understand the meaning of the life cycle thinking and to adopt it.The environmental impacts of an industrial disposable cup concept were studied with help of life-cycle assessment method. The objective of the study was to create new knowledge about the life cycle effects of the carton based cup concept. The scope of the study was to compare the effects of material choices and different end-of-life scenarios. The paper focuses on the global warming potential of the cup concept. The carton based products were covered either with polyethene or polylactide. In addition, the environmental impacts of the carton-based cups were compared to the estimated environmental impacts of polymer-based cups. The polymer based cups were made of polyethylene terephthalate. The paper shows that significant improvements can be achieved with help of the choice of materials and optimal end of life.

No full-text available

Request Full-text Paper PDF

To read the full-text of this research,
you can request a copy directly from the authors.

... As one LCA has already been published in a different publication [12], which is also considered for this review, only the additional LCA of the publication was included. Fourteen of the LCAs analyze both single-use and reusable packaging [1,11,[39][40][41][42][45][46][47][48][49][50][51], while three LCAs solely focus on single-use packaging [12,38,44] and two solely on reusable packaging [43,52]. An overview of the investigated packaging is given in Figure 2. Improving the environmental sustainability of reusable food containers in Europe [43] 10 Environmental impacts of takeaway food containers [1] 11 ...
... As one LCA has already been published in a different publication [12], which is also considered for this review, only the additional LCA of the publication was included. Fourteen of the LCAs analyze both single-use and reusable packaging [1,11,[39][40][41][42][45][46][47][48][49][50][51], while three LCAs solely focus on single-use packaging [12,38,44] and two solely on reusable packaging [43,52]. An overview of the investigated packaging is given in Figure 2. [12,[38][39][40][41], nine between 2016 and 2020 [1,13,42,43,[48][49][50][51][52], and three in 2021 [44,45,47]. ...
... Fourteen of the LCAs analyze both single-use and reusable packaging [1,11,[39][40][41][42][45][46][47][48][49][50][51], while three LCAs solely focus on single-use packaging [12,38,44] and two solely on reusable packaging [43,52]. An overview of the investigated packaging is given in Figure 2. [12,[38][39][40][41], nine between 2016 and 2020 [1,13,42,43,[48][49][50][51][52], and three in 2021 [44,45,47]. The geographical focus of most of the LCAs (14) is either all of Europe or a specific country within Europe [1,[11][12][13]38,39,41,[43][44][45][46][49][50][51]. ...
Article
Full-text available
Consumer behavior can significantly influence the environmental impact of products. Takeaway food and beverage packaging can be assumed to be an example of this effect, as consumers directly affect its disposal or, in the case of reusable packaging, the reuse rate. While possible environmental impacts of takeaway food and beverage packaging are comprehensively discussed in available Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) studies, consumer behavior is not extensively considered. Thus, a literature review was used to analyze existing LCAs of takeaway food and beverage packaging regarding three aspects: (i) the extent to which consumers are considered in the use phase, (ii) the inclusion of littering, and (iii) the consideration of consumer behavior in the End-of-Life (EoL) phase. The analysis shows that none of the reviewed LCAs includes all reviewed aspects of consumer behavior, and that the depth of implementation varied significantly. We conclude that, currently, the topic is not adequately considered in available LCAs and future studies need to address it more widely. This is especially important for the comparison of single-use and reusable takeaway packaging, as consumer behavior significantly influences the environmental impact of both systems. Finally, we argue why a method that includes littering on takeaway packaging needs to be developed.
... Previous research in this field has compared the environmental impacts of disposable cups made from different materials, in order to identify the most environmentally friendly type ( Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007 ;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010 ;Van der Harst et al., 2014 ;Van der Harst and Potting, 2013 ;Woods and Bakshi, 2014 ;Gautam et al., 2020 ). Most of those studies compared bio-based materials with fossil-based materials, and some found that bio-based materials scored higher than fossil-based in terms of global warming potential ( Häkkinen and Vares, 2010 ;Gautam et al., 2020 ). ...
... Previous research in this field has compared the environmental impacts of disposable cups made from different materials, in order to identify the most environmentally friendly type ( Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007 ;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010 ;Van der Harst et al., 2014 ;Van der Harst and Potting, 2013 ;Woods and Bakshi, 2014 ;Gautam et al., 2020 ). Most of those studies compared bio-based materials with fossil-based materials, and some found that bio-based materials scored higher than fossil-based in terms of global warming potential ( Häkkinen and Vares, 2010 ;Gautam et al., 2020 ). However, multiple-dataset comparisons based on life cycle assessments of disposable cups have shown that no one type of cup material is consistently better than others ( Van der Harst and Potting, 2013 ). ...
... For this scenario analysis, PLA from cassava produced in Thailand was applied. PLA was selected as it seems to be the most popular and feasible material for use on paper-based disposables ( Häkkinen and Vares, 2010 ;Van der Harst et al., 2014 ;Van der Harst and Potting, 2013 ). As it is biodegradable, the whole paper plate could be composted or anaerobically digested. ...
Article
Full-text available
Plastic pollution of the natural environment world-wide is ubiquitous. More than 80% of marine litter is made of plastics, 70% of which originates from disposable items, so plastic disposables need to be replaced with disposables made from renewable materials. However, it is important to investigate the environmental impact of renewable alternatives through their life cycle, in order to support sustainable consumption and production. In this study, the carbon footprint of disposable plates made from two different renewable materials (paper, tree leaves) were analysed using life cycle assessment. The leaf plate was produced in India and the paper plate in Finland, but both were used and disposed of in Sweden. The results showed that the leaf plate had higher carbon footprint, due to long-distance transport and use of fossil fuel-based electricity for production. Scenario analysis indicated that the emissions associated with the leaf plate were lower when replacing air freight with sea transport and with economies of scale in expanded production. For the paper plate, the processing stage was shown to contribute most life cycle emissions. These could be lowered by applying a biodegradable coating. In comparison the leaf plate had the benefit of being biodegradable, but this benefit was not enough to compete with the paper plate which was consider the less environmentally damaging alternative. However, in order to increase sustainability in the food supply chain, it will not be enough to just improve the material use for single use plates, especially since the idea of single use materials could be seen as less sustainable, but improved materials have the potential to offset the anticipated growth of the food service sector where single use items are widely used.
... While there are several studies available on geotechnical properties of C&D material, few of them focus on road work applications and among these only a small number of them have discussed the environmental concerns of using these materials in road applications [24]. This is despite the fact that one of the primary arguments against using recycled material including C&D materials in road applications is the possible spread of remaining pollutants [41]. Application of C&D materials in road works requires a comprehensive study on the environmental effects of these materials to ensure that their environmental impacts are considered throughout the life cycle of the project [41]. ...
... This is despite the fact that one of the primary arguments against using recycled material including C&D materials in road applications is the possible spread of remaining pollutants [41]. Application of C&D materials in road works requires a comprehensive study on the environmental effects of these materials to ensure that their environmental impacts are considered throughout the life cycle of the project [41]. ...
... These values then need to be checked with Environmental Protection Authority requirements of the country (or state) that material is going to be used at. Figure 9 shows the water flow balance in a recycled glass layer used in a subbase layer of a typical road pavement. It shows that part of the rainwater evaporates or flows off on top of the surface and does not get into the pavement layer constructed out of C&D material [41]. The remaining part which is shown by gray arrows eventually seeps into the base layer and then fraction of it (indicated in solid black arrows) enters into the recycled glass layer. ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
global population has led to major issues over waste disposal. The reuse of waste material is an important topic from both sustainability and economic point of view. In this paper, application of Construction and Demolition materials (C&D) in road works is reviewed and discussed. C&D material were evaluated by laboratory testing methods to assess their viability for reuse in roads and footpaths. Several unique field case studies where C&D materials have been used are also reported. The environmental risks associated with use of C&D materials in road is also discussed. The types of Construction and demolition wastes that were studied include Recycled Concrete Aggregate (RCA), Crushed Brick (CB), Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement (RAP), Fine Recycled Glass (FRG) and Waste Rock (WR). C&D materials were found to be suitable for road and footpaths applications such as embankment fills, pavement base/subbase and pipe bedding applications.
... For several studies the goal was to evaluate and compare the environmental impact between cups or drinking systems in order to find the most beneficial cup/system (Franklin Associates, 2006;Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007;Ligthart and Ansems, 2007;Pladerer et al., 2008;Uihlein et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006). The goal of other studies was to benchmark a specific cup against other cups, and to quantify the Associates, 2009aAssociates, , 2011Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;PE Americas, 2009). ...
... Two studies examined only hot cups (Franklin Associates, 2009a;Ligthart and Ansems, 2007), seven studies examined only cold cups (Franklin Associates, 2006;Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;PE Americas, 2009;Pladerer et al., 2008;Uihlein et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006), and one study included both hot and cold cups (Franklin Associates, 2011). ...
... All studies examined at least one cradle-to-grave cup system (i.e. one cup material and one waste processing option for one cup weight; reference flow). Most studies incorporated additional cup systems with either alternative cup materials or production properties (Franklin Associates, 2009a;PE Americas, 2009), alternative waste processes (Franklin Associates, 2011;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;Pladerer et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006), or various weights of the cups (Franklin Associates, 2011;PE Americas, 2009) (see also Tables 2.1 and 2.2). The results from these additional cup systems were also included in our study as cup systems on their own. ...
... To do this qualitatively, I reviewed research that has already been conducted, and compiled the data into a life cycle inventory for analysis. A cradle-to-grave life cycle analysis consists of various steps of a product's arbitrary "life cycle," from the very initial stage to its end of life (Häkkinen 2010). This can encompass numerous life stages, but mainly they involve the extraction of raw materials, material processing and manufacturing, distribution, usage, repair, maintenance, and disposal (Häkkinen 2010). ...
... A cradle-to-grave life cycle analysis consists of various steps of a product's arbitrary "life cycle," from the very initial stage to its end of life (Häkkinen 2010). This can encompass numerous life stages, but mainly they involve the extraction of raw materials, material processing and manufacturing, distribution, usage, repair, maintenance, and disposal (Häkkinen 2010). For the purpose of this research, the main stages of data analysis will be focused on raw material extraction, material processing and manufacturing, and disposal or end of life stage. ...
... This is largely due to their ability to maintain their shape and insulating properties over time of use, which many alternative options and new pilot cups have not been able to duplicate (Alliance 2000). Polyethylene is the chemical that is used to line the inside of the paper cup (Häkkinen 2010) as well as seal the seams of the cup, which enables the product to be heat and water resistant (Rhim 2009). This allows the disposable cup to move beyond its normal life span without losing its structural stability under heat (Rhim 2009). ...
... For several studies the goal was to evaluate and compare the environmental impact between cups or drinking systems in order to find the most beneficial cup/system (Franklin Associates, 2006;Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007;Ligthart and Ansems, 2007;Pladerer et al., 2008;Uihlein et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006). The goal of other studies was to benchmark a specific cup against other cups, and to quantify the environmental impact of a specific cup with new, improved or different technology or waste options (Franklin Associates, 2009Associates, , 2011Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;PE Americas, 2009). The goal of an LCA influences among others the methodological choices, system boundaries and used data (e.g., company specific data versus generic or secondary data), and thus influences the GWP results. ...
... The ten selected LCA articles and reports include cold and hot cups (see Tables 1 and 2). Two studies examined only hot cups (Franklin Associates, 2009;Ligthart and Ansems, 2007), seven studies examined only cold cups (Franklin Associates, 2006;Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;PE Americas, 2009;Pladerer et al., 2008;Uihlein et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006), and one study included both hot and cold cups (Franklin Associates, 2011). ...
... All studies examined at least one cradle-to-grave cup system (i.e., one cup material and one waste processing option for one cup weight; reference flow). Most studies incorporated additional cup systems with either alternative cup materials or production properties (Franklin Associates, 2009;PE Americas, 2009), alternative waste processes (Franklin Associates, 2011;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;Pladerer et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006), or various weights of the cups (Franklin Associates, 2011;PE Americas, 2009) (see also Tables 1 and 2). The results from these additional cup systems were also included in our study as cup systems on their own. ...
Article
This study used multiple data sets and modelling choices in an environmental life cycle assessment (LCA) to compare typical disposable beverage cups made from polystyrene (PS), polylactic acid (PLA; bioplastic) and paper lined with bioplastic (biopaper). Incineration and recycling were considered as waste processing options, and for the PLA and biopaper cup also composting and anaerobic digestion. Multiple data sets and modelling choices were systematically used to calculate average results and the spread in results for each disposable cup in eleven impact categories. The LCA results of all combinations of data sets and modelling choices consistently identify three processes that dominate the environmental impact: (1) production of the cup's basic material (PS, PLA, biopaper), (2) cup manufacturing, and (3) waste processing. The large spread in results for impact categories strongly overlaps among the cups, however, and therefore does not allow a preference for one type of cup material. Comparison of the individual waste treatment options suggests some cautious preferences. The average waste treatment results indicate that recycling is the preferred option for PLA cups, followed by anaerobic digestion and incineration. Recycling is slightly preferred over incineration for the biopaper cups. There is no preferred waste treatment option for the PS cups. Taking into account the spread in waste treatment results for all cups, however, none of these preferences for waste processing options can be justified. The only exception is composting, which is least preferred for both PLA and biopaper cups. Our study illustrates that using multiple data sets and modelling choices can lead to considerable spread in LCA results. This makes comparing products more complex, but the outcomes more robust.
... For several studies the goal was to evaluate and compare the environmental impact between cups or drinking systems in order to find the most beneficial cup/system (Franklin Associates, 2006;Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007;Ligthart and Ansems, 2007;Pladerer et al., 2008;Uihlein et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006). The goal of other studies was to benchmark a specific cup against other cups, and to quantify the environmental impact of a specific cup with new, improved or different technology or waste options (Franklin Associates, 2009Associates, , 2011Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;PE Americas, 2009). The goal of an LCA influences among others the methodological choices, system boundaries and used data (e.g., company specific data versus generic or secondary data), and thus influences the GWP results. ...
... The ten selected LCA articles and reports include cold and hot cups (see Tables 1 and 2). Two studies examined only hot cups (Franklin Associates, 2009;Ligthart and Ansems, 2007), seven studies examined only cold cups (Franklin Associates, 2006;Garrido and Alvarez del Castillo, 2007;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;PE Americas, 2009;Pladerer et al., 2008;Uihlein et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006), and one study included both hot and cold cups (Franklin Associates, 2011). ...
... All studies examined at least one cradle-to-grave cup system (i.e., one cup material and one waste processing option for one cup weight; reference flow). Most studies incorporated additional cup systems with either alternative cup materials or production properties (Franklin Associates, 2009;PE Americas, 2009), alternative waste processes (Franklin Associates, 2011;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;Pladerer et al., 2008;Vercalsteren et al., 2006), or various weights of the cups (Franklin Associates, 2011;PE Americas, 2009) (see also Tables 1 and 2). The results from these additional cup systems were also included in our study as cup systems on their own. ...
Article
Disposable cups can be made from conventional petro-plastics, bioplastics, or paperboard (coated with petro-plastics or bioplastics). This study compared ten life cycle assessment (LCA) studies of disposable cups with the aim to evaluate the robustness of their results. The selected studies have only one impact category in common, namely climate change with global warming potential (GWP) as its category indicator. Quantitative GWP results of the studies were closer examined. GWPs within and across each study show none of the cup materials to be consistently better than the others. Comparison of the absolute GWPs (after correction for the cup volume) also shows no consistent better or worse cup material. An evaluation of the methodological choices and the data sets used in the studies revealed their influence on the GWP. The differences in GWP can be attributed to a multitude of factors, i.e., cup material and weight, production processes, waste processes, allocation options, and data used. These factors basically represent different types of uncertainty. Sensitivity and scenario analyses provided only the influence of one factor at once. A systematic and simultaneous use of sensitivity and scenario analyses could, in a next research, result in more robust outcomes.
... 4 Researchers have attempted to measure the environmental effects of the coffeemarket chain through life-cycle assessments. 6,8 Evidence shows that these environmental effects vary greatly (eg, the carbon footprint associated with transporting and manufacturing and associated waste), but suggests that nodes and networks involved will need to change to tackle climate change. 6 Although these findings are inconclusive, research exploring the environmental effects of disposable cups is conclusive and they can be addressed relatively easily by the consumer. ...
... 6 Although these findings are inconclusive, research exploring the environmental effects of disposable cups is conclusive and they can be addressed relatively easily by the consumer. 8 To tackle these environmental challenges, policy and programmatic actions are needed at all scales and stages of the coffee-market chain. At the consumer stage, attention to waste and recycling initiatives that apply sophisticated local strategies to address waste reduction are required, as well as behavioural changes. ...
... 4 The majority of waste disposable paper cups end up in landfills or are burned rather than recycled, which is environmentally unfriendly because of toxic offgassing. [5][6][7] Among every 400 disposable paper cups, only one is recycled because they are hard to recycle by conventional recycling plants. 8,9 Furthermore, global annual carbon emission is 7.5 metric tons carbon dioxide equivalents from WDPCs. 9 So, successful recycling of disposable paper cups not only reduces quantity of waste, but also contributes to reducing environmental burdens. ...
... In the case of mass SUC in the food industry, they have made with a representative variety of materials or mixtures, which start from virgin materials manufactured with multiple sizes with multiple purposes for single-use (2). These essential mass-use elements are referred to in the literature as single-use or disposable disposables (3), being disposed of in the short term in open dumps, in sanitary landfills or other means unbalance the environment (3) (4), leaving out any possibility of applying actions to achieve their use or efficiency in their re-circularization (5). ...
Article
Full-text available
The article discusses the debate that calls the academy and the generation of scientific production to contribute to the substantial contributions of public policy from the areas of the Circular Economy-CE, especially for industrial sectors that have a high economic and environmental impact. The bibliometric review (30 years) allows arguing the limitations in the contributions to face the challenges posed by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) from the regulation and political instrumentation. The results show investigative biases in the institutional order of the food packaging industry that has massified production towards the consumption of single-use glasses (SUG). The discussion states that the generation of knowledge should re-evaluate social responsibility without bias in thematic trends. Finally, it is proposed that academic contributions should focus on the review of incentives for efficient production that minimizes the massive consumption of materials.
... The use of PLA to produce deli containers, envelope window film, foam meat trays and water bottles leads to lower emission in terms of CO 2 equivalents compared to fossil-based alternatives (Franklin Associates, 2006). The same result can be obtained by comparing carton-based cups coated in polyethene or polylactide to PET cups (Häkkinen and Vares, 2010). Studies on packaging films have demonstrated that also landfilling is an effective end of life for PLA items (Choi et al., 2018). ...
Article
Full-text available
Annually, 115.000 tons of plastic tableware are used in Italy. The end of life of these objects is particularly troubled because no efficient way of recycling or reusing exist. Studies performed by the European Union demonstrate that about 80% of sea waste is made of plastic, representing a danger to human health and ecosystem. The aim of this paper is to analyse substitutes to disposable plastic tableware using the Life Cycle Assessment methodology. The alternatives are objects made of bio compostable plastic, both disposable and reusable. This article compares single-use and multi-use tableware made of a Polylactic acid (PLA) - Polybutylene succinate (PBS) blend with traditional disposable tableware made of polypropylene and of polystyrene. In order to perform an effective assessment, the objects are grouped in place settings, each made of a cup, a plate and cutlery. The use of tray mat and napkin is also taken into account. It was assumed that the fossil-based items are sent to landfill whereas the bio-based ones are sent to a compost plant. The functional unit chosen was “the service of 1000 meals”. The impact categories taken into account are Global Warming 100a, Ozone Depletion, Ozone Formation (Vegetation), Acidification, Aquatic Eutrophication, Human Toxicity water and Ecotoxicity water chronic. The results show that the compostable table sets have lower impact than the sets made of fossil-based plastic in all the categories except in Ozone Depletion and in Aquatic Eutrophication. In the categories of Human Toxicity water and Ecotoxicity water chronic, fossil-based materials have higher impact than multi-use one mainly due to the landfill scenario chosen as end of life. Disposable and reusable systems give a different contribution to total impact in different life stages. For disposable systems, the production and the end of life are the critical stages in terms of environmental burden, whereas for reusable systems washing is the most impactful phase. Further improvements can be obtained in the production of bio-based materials by using renewable energy to power the facilities whereas the washing phase can be improved by adopting certified ecopower. The impact of the reusable system strongly depends on the assumptions made on the number of reuses and on the washing modality.
... High-quality cellulose fiber is primarily used in disposable paper cups, and on their inner surfaces is a thin polyethylene coating. Paper plastic laminates are increasingly being used in a wide range of disposable goods (Häkkinen and Vares 2010;Mitchell et al. 2014). Because of the strong bond between cellulose board and polyethylene films, it is not easy to reuse or recycle other forms of board containers or cups including polypropylene. ...
Article
Polyethylene laminated disposable paper cups are commonly used as a container for hot drinks, yet there is limited knowledge on the transfer of contaminants from the cup to the drink. Here we poured 95◦C hot water in 14 cups, to simulate the preparation of hot beverage for daily use. We studied the water composition after 15 min by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and ion chromatography. Results show the presence of metals such as vanadium, chromium, copper, cobalt and arsenic at concentration ranging from 0.04 to 1.80 µg/L. Nitrate, nitrite, chloride, bromate, fluoride and sulfate ions were also detected at concentration from 0.003 to 49.21 mg/L. All concentrations are below the WHO maximum permissible limits in drinking water. However, the levels of vanadium at 1.24 µg/L and fluoride ions at 1.03 mg/L are likely to induce a health risk by bioaccumulation after long-term water ingestion. Therefore paper cups composition should be modified to avoid the release of contaminants in hot drinks.
... In the case of mass SUC in the food industry, they have made with a representative variety of materials or mixtures, which start from virgin materials manufactured with multiple sizes with multiple purposes for single-use (2). These essential mass-use elements are referred to in the literature as single-use or disposable disposables (3), being disposed of in the short term in open dumps, in sanitary landfills or other means unbalance the environment (3) (4), leaving out any possibility of applying actions to achieve their use or efficiency in their re-circularization (5). ...
Article
Full-text available
The article discusses the debate that calls the academy and the generation of scientific production to contribute to the substantial contributions of public policy from the areas of the Circular Economy - CE, especially for industrial sectors that have a high economic and environmental impact. The bibliometric review (30 years) allows arguing the limitations in the contributions to face the challenges posed by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) from the regulation and political instrumentation. The results show investigative biases in the institutional order of the food packaging industry that has massified production towards the consumption of single-use glasses (SUG). The discussion states that the generation of knowledge should re-evaluate social responsibility without bias in thematic trends. Finally, it is proposed that academic contributions should focus on the review of incentives for efficient production that minimizes the massive consumption of materials.
... In other studies, a seemingly arbitrary number of uses are selected as a functional basis. For example, Madival et al. (2009) andSuwanmanee et al. (2013) selected a functional unit of 10,000 uses whilst Häkkinen and Vares (2010) employed 100,000 uses. Plastic flows to the ocean are commonly reported in terms of annual flowrates into the marine environment. ...
Article
Full-text available
PurposeThe increasing global concern surrounding plastic pollution has resulted in a spotlight being placed on major contributors. Straws have been identified as a top contributor in this regard leading to a global outcry against plastic straws. This has resulted in the increasing popularity of plastic straw material alternatives. This study compares the environmental impacts associated with five straw material options available in South Africa.Methods The straw materials compared include disposable options (polypropylene, paper and polylactide) and reusable straws (glass and steel). Plastic straws were the only option which are locally produced from local materials, whereas glass and steel straws are manufactured from imported materials and paper and polylactide straws are imported. The functional unit was based on an annual straw consumption per capita, which equates to 36 disposable straws and 1 reusable straw. The impact assessment was conducted using the Recipe Midpoint (H) method, which took into consideration 18 impact categories. The potential marine pollution impacts were explored based on the leakage propensity of the material option coupled with its degradability.Results and discussionThe paper straw was found to have lower climate change emissions than the plastic one, which was mainly caused by the performance of the material. In South Africa, coal is used as a primary feedstock for polypropylene production making it more carbon-intensive in comparison with polypropylene produced in Europe and the USA which is primarily from crude oil and/or natural gas feedstocks. Glass and steel straws would require 23–39 and 37–63 uses respectively to break even with climate change emissions associated with disposable options. Overall, material production was the major contributor to straw emissions. The relative contribution of transportation, including import, was more dependent on the transportation mode compared with distance. For reusable straws, the washing water temperature was found to notably influence emissions. At end-of-life, reusable straws were considered unlikely to enter the marine environments. Disposable straws were found to have a leakage rate of 38%, with paper being the only marine degradable material.Conclusions Overall, paper straws had the least impacts in the majority of impact categories in comparison with other disposable options and glass was more favourable to steel. In terms of marine pollution, reusable straws were deemed to pose the least risk due to their unlikelihood to be polluted. Paper was associated with the least potential impacts of the disposal options, due to its degradability.
... One recent example of this fast-moving world of cheap or 'free' products, in this case packaging an everyday drink for 'takeaway', is the single-use coffee cup, which in many respects exemplifies this 'throwaway' or 'single-use' category (Hakkinen & Vares, 2010;Ferreira, 2017;Ertz, Huang, Jo, Karakas, Sarigullü, 2017). Adapted from the much older paper cup, single-use coffee cups commonly combine a supposedly recyclable plastic-lined paper cup with a thin recyclable plastic lid, ensuring that little can be done with this product on disposal, since two different, and expensive, processes would be required to recapture and reuse the different materials (Ziada, 2009;Ertz et al., 2017). ...
... Franklin Associates (2006b) performed an extensive LCA on single-use cups (2006b) and later updated it to include PLA (2011b). Other studies focusing on compostable PLA cups (but not reusables) include Häkkinen and Vares (2010), and Potting and van der Harst (2014). ...
Technical Report
Full-text available
“Compostable” bioplastic foodware is marketed as “green” but in practice almost all is landfilled. Using bioplastic foodware (like PLA) that is landfilled yields no greenhouse gas reduction benefits. Hot and cold cups are the most studied foodservice product in terms of life cycle energy inputs and greenhouse gas impacts. Depending on the selected system boundaries, results vary widely. Improvements in dishwashing energy efficiency and changes in the electrical grid suggest that reusable cups have lower impacts than disposable cups in many situations. Reuse is far superior to recycling. A detailed study of drinking water delivery options showed that washing reusable water containers (glasses and bottles) has far lower global warming potential impacts than recycling single-use water bottles. Comparative life cycle studies of single-use versus reusable clamshells, plates, bowls and flatware have been less detailed than those for cups and water systems, but they generally reported low usage levels beyond which reusables have lower overall greenhouse emissions or energy usage than single-use products (“break-even points”).
... However, the recycling claims made by UK coffeehouses have been criticised (Turner, 2016). This is due to the problem of safe disposal of coffee cups that, until recently, have been portrayed by many coffee shops as being 100% recyclable which is untrue in reality (Häkkinen and Vares, 2010). This is also because food waste represents a critical issue for coffeehouses which suggests that 'a zero waste' policy is difficult to implement within the sector (Katajajuuri et al., 2014), and yet Costa Coffee and Café Nero claim they have successfully put it in place (Table 1). ...
Article
The hospitality industry generates substantial amounts of food waste. Although the issue has been politically recognised, it remains under-researched. Studies are limited in number and restricted in sectoral and geographical coverage. They have attempted to quantify and characterise food waste in hospitality ventures while the managerial approaches to its reduction have not been scrutinised. The coffee shop sub-sector of the hospitality industry has been entirely excluded from analysis. This study examined food waste in UK coffee shops through the managerial lens. While food waste represents a significant challenge, the managerial approaches to its minimisation are conservative and focus on disposal, rather than prevention. Lack of governmental support, imperfect legislation, irresponsible consumer behaviour and restricted internal resources inhibit application of more advanced managerial approaches. To enhance the effectiveness of food waste management within the sub-sector, targeted policy interventions designed to strengthen corporate commitments and facilitate pro-environmental changes in consumer behaviour are necessary.
... Another basis of the perceived environmental friendliness is the ability for many bioplastics to be disposed of in an industrial composter; however, access to such a composter is not guaranteed (Hottle et al. 2014). As such, the bioplastics are often disposed of in a landfill setting, which will shift the life cycle environmental impact of the product (Madival et al. 2009;Hakkinen and Vares 2010;Potting and van der Harst 2015). ...
Article
Products of convenience are playing an increasingly large role in today's society. These products provide a competitive advantage over their conventional counterparts by requiring less time and effort to produce a similar service or experience. At the same time, these products are often also more materials intensive to produce and create a greater amount of waste. A comparative midpoint life cycle assessment of different coffee brewing systems is presented in order to explore the comparative impact of three different systems: drip filter, french press, and pod style (a product of convenience). Utilizing a comparative functional unit, the drip filter system method was found to have the greatest environmental impact in all impact categories, whereas the pod style had the least in six of the impact categories (with the french press having the least in two of the impact categories, and a tie between pod style and french press in a single impact category). This suggests that contrary to popular belief, the pod style coffee may be the more environmentally friendly option. The two most significant contributors to environmental impact in all of the categories considered was the amount of dry coffee utilized and the energy needed to brew the coffee, although in some categories considered transportation was also significant. There is the potential for the environmental impact of coffee brewing to shift if coffee wastage occurs (likely in the case of the drip filter and french press system) or if substantial changes in materials or energy consumption were to occur (in the case of the pod-style brewing system). From the perspective of industrial ecology, this analysis suggests that, in regard to products of consumer convenience, the convenient alternative may not have a significantly greater environmental impact than its conventional counterpart, and that it may be time to question that often-held assumption.
... However, even when a biomaterial product has been produced, there may still be several reasons why disposal presently remains relatively under-represented in their LCA: 1. It is not clear who " owns " the benefit of reducing GHGs of disposal; the manufacturer, the waste management company , or the consumer (Häkkinen and Vares 2010). This technical externality explains that if a company cannot claim benefits (of GHG reductions), they have little motive to consider it through, for example, design for deconstruction (Nemoto and Goto 2004). ...
Article
The carbon footprint (CF) of biofuels and biomaterials is a barrier to their acceptance, yet the greenhouse gas emissions associated with disposing of biomaterials are frequently omitted from analyses. This article investigates whether harmonization is appropriate for calculating the importance of biomaterials' disposal. This research shows that disposal stages could double a biomaterial's CF, or reduce it to the point that it could claim to be zero carbon. Incineration with combined heat and power coupled with on-site energy production in the biorefinery are identified as prerequisites to being zero carbon. The article assesses the current UK waste infrastructure's ability to support a low-carbon bio-based future economy, and finds that presently it only achieves marginal net reductions when compared to landfill and so cannot be said to support low-carbon biomaterials, though the article challenges the polluter pays principle where low-carbon disposal infrastructure are not available. Reuse and recycling are shown to have the potential to offset all the emissions caused by landfill of biomaterials. However, the savings are not so great as to offset the biomaterial's upstream emissions. The study explores the ability to overcome the barriers to incorporating disposal into life cycle assessment while identifying limitations of using harmonization as an assessment method. Specifically, data availability and industry consensus are flagged as major barriers. The study also uses sensitivity analysis to investigate the influence of methodological choices, such as allowing additional reuse and recycling stages, classifying biomaterials into different types, and choosing between opposing allocation methods.
... The strong bond between cellulose fibre board and the polyethylene coating make disposable cups and other types of PPLs difficult to recycle. With each cup typically weighing approximately 12.5 g the total mass of waste disposable cups from leading coffee chains alone in the UK is 6250 tonnes, with the vast majority being disposed of to landfill or via combustion in energy from waste facilities (Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;van der Harst and Potting, 2013). ...
Article
The majority of disposable cups are made from paper plastic laminates (PPL) which consist of high quality cellulose fibre with a thin internal polyethylene coating. There are limited recycling options for PPLs which has contributed to disposable cups becoming a high profile, problematic waste. In this work disposable cups have been shredded to form PPL flakes and these have been used to reinforce polypropylene to form novel paper plastic composites (PPCs). Samples were characterised using mechanical analysis and fhermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The work demonstrates that PPL disposable cups have potential to be beneficially reused as reinforcement in novel polypropylene composites.
... Pladerer et al. (2008), for instance, found a lower climate change impact for recycling of PET cups, compared to their incineration. Häkkinen and Vares (2010) showed a lower climate change impact for landfilling of PET cups compared to their incineration. Other assumptions and choices for waste processing also caused variation in LCA outcomes. ...
Conference Paper
Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a standardized methodology, but LCAs of the same product often still lead to divers outcomes. This study purposely used multiple data sets and methodological choices in an LCA of a disposable PS cup to quantify how these variations propagate and lead to a spread in LCA-results. The results for the PS cup consistently show major contributions from PS production, cup manufacturing, incineration and recycling (and minor contributions from other processes). Notably differences in amounts and types of energy used and reported emissions caused variation in results. Energy related impact categories contain smaller spread than the toxicity categories. The spread in results might give less clear, but more certain results to decision makers.
... Environmental comparison of different types of disposable cups and disposable with reusable cups is not new (e.g., Franklin Associates 2006Associates , 2009Associates , 2011Vercalsteren et al. 2006;Ligthart and Ansems 2007;PE Pladerer et al. 2008;Uihlein et al. 2008;Americas 2009;Häkkinen and Vares 2010). Existing LCA studies, however, show inconsistent and sometimes conflicting results for comparisons of different disposable cups ( Van der Harst and Potting 2013) and also for comparisons between disposable and reusable cups. ...
Article
Full-text available
PurposeThis paper integrates two complementary life cycle assessment (LCA) studies with the aim to advice facility managers on the sustainable use of cups, either disposable or reusable. Study 1 compares three disposable cups, i.e., made from fossil-based polystyrene (PS), biobased and compostable plastic (polylactic acid; PLA) and paper lined with PLA (biopaper). Study 2 compares the disposable PS cup with reusable cups that are handwashed or dishwashed.Methods Existing LCA studies show inconsistent and sometimes conflicting results, due to differences in used data and modeling choices. The comparison of disposable cups, study 1, deliberately applied multiple inventory data sets for relevant life cycle processes and multiple crediting principles for recycling. Included waste treatment options in study 1 were incineration, recycling, composting, and anaerobic digestion (last two not for the disposable PS cup). The PS cup is next compared with handwashed and dishwashed reusable cups (study 2). LCAs for the reusable cups use single data sets, and explore the influence of an increasing number of reuses. Cup LCA results were only compared within, and not across impact categories. All data relate to cups used with hot beverage vending machines in Dutch office settings.Results and discussionImpact results for each disposable cup show large and overlapping spreads. This prevents identifying a preferable disposable cup material, though still allows cautious preferences about waste treatment processes. Composting biocups is less good than other waste treatment processes. Average impact results for anaerobic digestion perform in almost all impact categories better than incineration for the PLA cup. Average impact results for recycling perform slightly better than incinerating for both biocups, but not for the PS cup. This comparison is affected, however, by the relatively large credits for avoided Dutch electricity production. Impact results for reusable cups do not perform better than disposable cups if both are used once. Impact results for the reusable cups contain large uncertainty due to widely varying user behavior.Conclusions Overall results do not allow any preference for one of the disposable cups or for disposable versus reusable cups. All cups can be used for more than one consumption. This gives a considerable environmental gain for the second and third hot beverage consumption with all cups. Facility managers can encourage a second or third serving with the same cup by financial incentives, only putting on dishwashers around noon and after working time, and/or consumer awareness activities.
... This is despite the fact that one of the primary arguments against using recycled material including recycled glass in road applications is the possible spread of remaining pollutants (Dalgren et al., 2011). Using recycled glass in road work applications requires a comprehensive study on the environmental effects of the waste material to ensure that its environmental impacts are considered throughout the life cycle of the project (Häkkinen and Vares, 2011). ...
Article
Full-text available
Recycled crushed glass is the main by-product of the glass recycling industry. Insufficient knowledge of the geotechnical characteristics of recycled glass and its environmental risks are the primary barriers in its application in road works. An extensive suite of geotechnical and environmental tests were undertaken on two common types of recycled crushed glass (fine recycled glass and medium recycled glass) to study the potential of using them in road works as alternatives to natural aggregates. Recycled glass was found to exhibit either equivalent or superior workability, hydraulic conductivity and shear strength to natural aggregates within the same soil classification and demonstrated the potential to substitute natural sand and gravel mixtures in a range of road applications. To address the environmental concerns of using recycled glass in road work applications, a comprehensive series of chemical and environmental tests including total and leachate concentration for a range of contaminant constituents including heavy metals and aromatic hydrocarbons were carried out. Test results were compared with environmental protection authorities’ requirements and indicated that no leaching hazard will be experienced during the service life of recycled glass in road work applications. Other possible environmental risks along with health and safety precautions and management suggestions have also been discussed.
... The strong bond between cellulose fibre board and the polyethylene coating make disposable cups and other types of PPLs difficult to recycle. With each cup typically weighing approximately 12.5 g the total mass of waste disposable cups from leading coffee chains alone in the UK is 6250 tonnes, with the vast majority being disposed of to landfill or via combustion in energy from waste facilities (Häkkinen and Vares, 2010;van der Harst and Potting, 2013). ...
Article
The majority of disposable cups are made from paper plastic laminates (PPL) which consist of high quality cellulose fibre with a thin internal polyethylene coating. There are limited recycling options for PPLs and this has contributed to disposable cups becoming a high profile, problematic waste. In this work disposable cups have been shredded to form PPL flakes and these have been used to reinforce polypropylene to form novel paper plastic composites (PPCs). The PPL flakes and polypropylene were mixed, extruded, pelletised and injection moulded at low temperatures to prevent degradation of the cellulose fibres. The level of PPL flake addition and the use of a maleated polyolefin coupling agent to enhance interfacial adhesion have been investigated. Samples have been characterised using tensile testing, dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) and thermogravimetric analysis. Use of a coupling agent allows composites containing 40wt.% of PPL flakes to increase tensile strength of PP by 50% to 30MPa. The Young modulus also increases from 1 to 2.5GPa and the work to fracture increases by a factor of 5. The work demonstrates that PPL disposable cups have potential to be beneficially reused as reinforcement in novel polypropylene composites.
... Calcium carbide residue, a byproduct of acetylene production process, has also been used in recent years as a cementing agent for pavement application (Horpibulsuk et al., 2012;. In addition, there is presently an urgent push by researchers, end-users and government agencies to seek end-of-life options for various types of waste generated by our society (Blengini and Garbarino, 2010;Clay et al., 2007;Häkkinen and Vares, 2010). ...
... To expand the hybrid LCA to cradle to grave, these are complemented with the emissions from different end of life scenarios. The waste hierarchy prioritises end of life scenarios thus: reduce, reuse and recycle, then incineration with combined heat and power recovery (CHP) and finally landfill (Häkkinen and Vares, 2010 (2001) on the GHGs arising from materials that are sent to landfill, recycled, or sent for mass incinerated with CHP, are presented in Table 3. Converting lignocellulosic material into ethanol for transport fuel 501 502 503 504 505 506 507 508 509 510 511 512 513 514 515 516 517 518 519 520 521 522 523 524 525 526 527 528 529 530 531 532 533 534 535 536 537 538 539 540 541 542 543 544 545 546 547 548 549 550 551 552 553 554 555 556 557 558 559 560 561 562 563 564 565 566 567 568 569 570 571 572 573 574 575 576 577 578 579 580 581 582 583 584 585 586 587 588 589 590 591 592 593 594 has been shown to avoid GHG. The savings achieved by using waste textiles from the mattresses to produce ethanol, shown in Table 3 are estimated by adapting data published by Jeihanipour et al. (2010) and Macedo et al. (2008) which suggests that 81% of the potential 0.56 g of ethanol per gram of cellulose can be extracted from textiles, and that using ethanol as a transport fuel can avoid an average of 2041 kgCO 2 -eq per m 3 of ethanol. ...
Article
In this research natural fibre (biomaterial) pocket spring mattresses are shown to emit marginally less greenhouse gasses (GHG) than foam (petrochemical) pocket spring mattresses. However, when end of life scenarios are considered, the results suggest much larger GHG emission reductions for natural fibre than foam mattresses. Refurbishing natural fibre mattresses and reusing the springs, coupled with recycling the waste components, can reduce GHG emissions by 90% compared to sending the mattresses to landfill. Incinerating mattresses via combined heat and power plants for electricity production and converting the waste textiles to ethanol are also shown to reduce GHG emissions, though to a lesser extent than refurbishment and recycling. Mattresses are normally disposed of via landfill however designing for reuse and recycling, coupled with supportive policy and legislation, may encourage more natural fibre mattresses and recycling. Such changes could save between 210 and 2092 thousand tCO(2)-eq in the European Union annually.
... Pladerer et al. (2008), for instance, found a lower climate change impact for recycling of PET cups, compared to their incineration. Häkkinen and Vares (2010) showed a lower climate change impact for landfilling of PET cups compared to their incineration. Other assumptions and choices for waste processing also caused variation in LCA outcomes. ...
Article
Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs) of the same products often result in different, sometimes even contradictory outcomes. Reasons for these differences include using different data sets and deviating modelling choices. This paper purposely used different data sets and modelling choices to identify how these differences propagated in LCA results. Vehicle for this methodological exploration was an LCA case study of a typical polystyrene (PS) disposable cup. An initial LCA of PS cups was made using only one data set per process. Contribution and sensitivity analysis identified those processes with influential contribution to the overall environmental impact. Next additional data sets were acquired for all influential processes. The spread in impact results for each life cycle process was calculated after impact assessment for each individual inventory data set as to preserve the correlation between inventory data within each individual data set. The spread in impact results reflects uncertainty existing between different data sets for the same process and due to modelling choices. The influence on overall LCA results was quantified by systematically applying all combinations of data sets and modelling choices.
Chapter
Full-text available
Green chemistry is a novel proposal grouping a set of criteria or guidelines for the design of sustainable industrial chemical processes and reducing the environmental deterioration produced not only by the productive process but also by the products. It is based on the search for social and environmental sustainability. However, it is important to indicate that it is more than a theory or a mandate, green chemistry is a work philosophy that encompasses all aspects of the processes where chemical transformations are involved, from their design, to their production, control, minimization of risks, and aspects that go beyond the useful life of the products. Here, the principles of green chemistry and its connection with the design, production, use, and final disposal of polymers are introduced in a general way, in order to give a broad perspective of the characteristics implicit in the concept “eco-friendly” applied to functional polymers.
Article
Full-text available
The usage of bio-fibres and recycled materials is a growing approach to address the ecological problems being faced today. Inspired by the guidelines defining the Waste for Life initiative, the present study reports new composite materials, based on the recycling of high-impact polystyrene, found, for instance in yogurt cups, and paper plastic laminates, deriving from disposable paper cups. Given their recycling incompatibility, paper plastic laminates are either dumped in landfills or incinerated after their first usage, threatening the environmental condition. Therefore, through the development of a new composite solution, the goal was to reduce this damaging environmental impact by providing a second life to both paper plastic laminates and high-impact polystyrene. Samples presented overall good mechanical properties, from which it is highlighted a Young’s Modulus of 1.75 GPa and a Tensile Strength of 21.2 MPa, encouraging the application of the present material to identified global obstacles.
Article
The Circular Economy (CE) promises an alternative to the current ‘take-make-dispose’ economic model of high energy consumption and waste production. There are a range of examples of CE implementation in literature, but few focus on complex product value chains. Consequently, there is a lack of sector-specific understanding of barriers and enablers. This research addresses this gap with a case study from the coffee industry. Over a 7-month period, we observed a business model experimentation (BME) in the value chain of an Amsterdam based specialty coffee importer. The BME is aimed at changing both the producing and consuming side of the value chain, with the intention to minimize waste and balance ecological with social and financial sustainability. It was concluded that coherence in governmental policies, “silo thinking” of industries and standardization of circular design remain major barriers. Having a common awareness and vision as well as designing solid business models were found to be crucial enablers. Next to this, additions to existing literature are presented. Firstly, the sensitivity to identity and market perception of companies with regards to the adoption of CE initiatives was observed as a barrier. Secondly, “knowledge” in CE literature often refers to the technical barrier, where it was found that more specific fact-based communication can be an enabler for CE initiatives when perceptions of a linear economy are false. Thirdly, clear interaction between barriers and enablers was observed, which additionally allowed a clear role for the focal firm. The study at hand complements existing literature on CE with a sector-specific perspective of the coffee industry.
Article
Current practice of recycled waste plastics includes 7 major types: polyethylene terephthalate (PETE), high-density polyethylene (HDPE), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), low-density polyethylene (LDPE), polypropylene (PP), polystyrene (PS), and others such as acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), polycarbonate (PC), and polyurethane (PU). This paper provides a comprehensive and in-depth literature review on the feasibility and the state-of-art repurposing waste plastics into cleaner asphalt pavement materials. Optimum dosage of waste plastics should be identified based on appropriate engineering performance parameters such as viscosity of asphalt, and rutting, fatigue cracking, thermal cracking, and moisture resistance of asphalt mixtures. If the appropriate amount of plastic is not determined, adverse impacts on the performance of the pavement could occur. Plastic wastes are incorporated into asphalt mixes by the dry (aggregate substitute) or wet (binder modifier, extender, or substitute) methods. In general, the incorporation of plastic wastes into asphalt mixes showed improvements in performance parameters such as stiffness, and rutting and fatigue resistance. However, HDPE, PVC, LDPE, PP, and PS yielded conflicting performance measures. Overall, the capability of recycling waste plastics into asphalt mixes would minimize landfilling, reduce dependence on nonrenewable resources, and diversify asphalt pavement building options. Additional research is needed to fully understand the effects of various plastics on the performance of the pavement, and potential environmental and economic impacts this process could implicate. Another area where further study is needed are methods to improve the compatibilization between plastic and asphalt.
Article
Full-text available
The environmental impacts of packaging and food service ware (FSW) are increasingly the subject of government policy, public discourse, and industry commitments. While some consideration is given to reducing the impacts of packaging across its entire life cycle, most of the focus is on packaging waste or feedstock substitution. Efforts typically focus on specific packaging characteristics, or material attributes, commonly perceived to be environmentally preferable. This article summarizes an extensive meta-review of existing published literature that was performed to determine whether the material attributes recyclability, recycled content, compostability, and bio-based, commonly considered to be environmentally beneficial, correlate with lower net environmental impacts across the full life cycle of the packaging and FSW. Seventy-one unique life cycle assessment (LCA) studies that quantify the environmental impacts throughout the entire life cycle of packaging and FSW were analyzed. These studies included over 5,000 comparisons for 13 impact categories commonly analyzed in LCA studies. The results from the meta-review identified a number of instances where material attributes do not correlate with environmental benefits for packaging and FSW. Rather, other characteristics such as material choice or mass of the packaging/FSW products can have higher influence in determining life cycle impacts.
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter provides a brief history of the car radio, an artefact that is more often than not the playing the soundtrack of our lives as we drive.
Technical Report
Full-text available
According to the American Heritage Dictionary, an attribute is “a quality or characteristic of a person or thing.” There is strong emphasis in the marketplace on environmentally-related attributes of materials, as evidenced by product labels that promote the recycled content, recyclability, compostability, or bio-based composition of a product and public policies that focus on increasing recovery/recycling rates (e.g. circularity) or banning materials that do not include these attributes (e.g. zero waste). Attributes are attractive as a basis for environmental policies because they are easy to communicate and measure, so much so that they have become the de facto indicator of the environmental goodness of a product or material. But how well do these attributes actually correlate with reductions in life cycle environmental impacts? Under what conditions are they helpful for informing environmental strategies and under what conditions do they result in harmful or unintended outcomes? To test the utility and limitations of attribute-based decision-making, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and Franklin Associates performed a review and meta-analysis of existing life cycle assessment (LCA) literature. Identifying and including comparative studies that analyzed at least one material attribute for either of two product categories, packaging and food service ware. The results of this study fall into three categories – instances where the attribute correlates with a positive environmental outcome, instances where the attribute does not offer a positive environmental outcome and instances where the results are mixed. Ultimately, the results offer critical insights on the use (and limits) of attributes in decision-making to reduce environmental impacts, which is relevant for governments, businesses, procurement officers, end of life advocates and more.
Book
Full-text available
With a foreword by Dr Ursula Frederick, this book presents the results of research into a range of objects associated with road trips, from parts to the car itself, to parts of the roadscape, and to the objects we might take with us. The common theme that unites them all is that they are all immediately identifiable as being associated with long car journeys.
Article
Full-text available
Percebe-se uma popularização da preocupação com o impacto ambiental dos copos descartáveis. Desse contexto surge a motivação para este estudo, que tem foco no uso cotidiano de copos descartáveis. Foram feitos: teste de isolamento térmico, teste de vazamento, ensaio de compressão e observação em microscópio. Como objeto de estudo, foram escolhidos 4 tipos de copo descartável de uso voltado a bebidas quentes, de acordo com seu material: papel com e sem revestimento plástico, poliestireno (plástico) e poliestireno expandido (Isopor). Busca-se comparar propriedades tecnológicas dos materiais, investigando especificamente um material recente no mercado brasileiro, considerado mais sustentável: o copo de papel.
Article
The development of bio-plastics significantly contributes to sustainable development in terms of the waste management aspects associated with lower environmental impact. To achieve the aim of this study the life cycle assessment (LCA) of garbage bags from cradle-to-grave is evaluated and compared. The materials to be studied in this paper are polyethylene (PE), biomass polyethylene from molasses (Bio-PE), and poly(butylene adipate-co-terephthalate)-starch blends (PBAT/starch). The functional unit defined for three types of garbage bags is 1 bag. The SimaPro LCA software 8.2.3 with the Eco-indicator 99 method for life cycle impact assessment (LCIA) is used to assess the environmental impacts. The normalized score from cradle-to-gate of almost all of the environmental impacts for the PE bag is lower than the scores for the Bio-PE and PBAT/starch bags, except for climate change and fossil fuels impacts, the Bio-PE and PBAT/starch bags have a small, normalized score for climate change impacts. The single score of PBAT/starch bags is 14.9% and 47.1% greater than the scores of PE and Bio-PE bags, respectively. The environmental impact performance from cradle-to-grave of the incineration of Bio-PE with energy recovery is better than the other options, in terms of fossil fuels. PBAT/starch bags also have the lowest normalized scores for climate change, and for respiratory inorganics impacts when the bags were composted. The single score values of the incineration of Bio-PE with energy recovery and PBAT/starch in composting are favourable for all of the options studied. The environmental impact reduction of bio-based bags could be achieved through low resource consumption techniques in the packaging and production stages, and through the ultimate utilization of Bio-PE as a waste-to-energy concept and PBAT/starch when converted to fertilizers for agricultural applications.
Article
The life cycle assessment is an important tool to assess the environmental impacts of petroleum- and bio-based plastics. This study assessed the global warming potential and eco-efficiency of single used boxes, namely polystyrene, polyethylene terephthalate and polylactic acid, from cradle to grave. The effects of carbon uptake from photosynthesis and land-use change during corn plantation on global warming potential of polylactic acid boxes were considered. The global warming impact of the studied materials under various waste management scenarios was studied and compared. It was found that polystyrene in landfill created the lowest global warming impact (51.4 kg CO2 equivalent). Next, polylactic acid with photosynthesis in compost exhibited the second greatest environmental benefits (152.2 kg CO2 equivalent). Whereas, polylactic acid with land-use change in landfill revealed the highest global warming impact (773.5 kg CO2 equivalent). The global warming impact of polylactic acid with photosynthesis was lower by 20–51% than that of polylactic acid with land-use change in all waste management scenarios. Polystyrene in landfill was the most favorable eco-efficiency because of its lowest total cost with relatively low global warming impact. In conclusion for bio-based boxes, polylactic acid with photosynthesis in compost showed the highest eco-efficiency. The eco-efficiency of polylactic acid boxes can be significantly improved by minimizing the resin prices and disposal in the suitable waste management by composting.
Article
Life Cycle Inventory Analysis (LCI) is one phase within the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology used to determine the environmental impact of a product system. Life Cycle Inventory can be a decision making tool for government officials, industries or society to evaluate a product's environmental impact. This study used Life Cycle Inventory Analysis (LCI) to provide a simple methodology to compare the end-of-life results for the product systems of three shipping containers for baby carrots. The study compared the product packaging by including the raw material, manufacturing, filling, and distribution phases of the product systems. The three product systems consist of one corrugated display-ready corrugated container (DRC), one reduced corrugated DRC container, and one reusable plastic container (RPC). All three packaging systems are compared with two end-of-life scenarios in terms of landfill, incineration, and recycling. Overall, the results of this study show the significant difference in green house impact and total energy consumption between Reusable Plastic Containers and the two DRC containers.
Chapter
This chapter attempts to answer the question “Are bioplastics ‘green’ plastics?”, firstly by way of a brief literature review on the solutions that lifecycle assessment (LCA) methods are able to bring, also examining the limitations of these methods, and then by putting forward an additional reference framework – one which is more qualitative – established on the basis of the 12 principles of green chemistry. In the interests of clarity, it should be noted that the term “bioplastic” is to be understood here in terms of nature rather than properties. While LCA of bioplastics is capable of providing us with interesting data in terms of evaluation of their environmental impact, there are certain limitations, the list of which could still be added to. In addition, we must consider that LCAs are quantitative studies, which often need to be boiled down to a unique score, or aggregated to a lower level.
Article
Cellulose-calcium silicate (CCS) nanocomposites were fabricated through an environment-friendly process from waste wood, glass, and clam shells. Effect of heat-treatment on synthesis of CCS nanocomposites was investigated in terms of the precursor ratio and firing temperature. The optimization of cellulose, silicon, and calcium ratio resulted in the low temperature synthesis and also reducing input energy and the production of toxic by-products. The synthesized CCS nanocomposites were examined for its versatility, especially regarding its ability to replace plastics. The resulting biodegradable material has the potential for use in a variety of applications, including reducing CO 2 emissions.
Article
Bio-based products are considered to be a sustainable alternative to conventional fossil fuel-based materials. This paper studies the production of glucose from corn starch, an important feedstock for a wide range of bio-based products (e.g. ethanol, bio-based monomers), in a European corn wet mill (CWM). Following the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) principles, non-renewable energy use (NREU) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are assessed for the system cradle-to-factory gate. The allocation problem that the analysis is faced with is addressed by applying seven different approaches: namely sub-division (two variants), partitioning based on physical causalities and on economic relationships and the principles of system expansion (three variants). Depending on the approach, the NREU for glucose production ranges from 6.8 to 9.3 MJ/kg glucose dry solids (ds) and the GHG emissions from 0.7 to 1.1 kg CO2 eq./kg glucose ds. The results for NREU per tonne of glucose are robust while for GHG, large deviation from the average is found for system expansion and for the approach main process. The influence of each calculation should be kept in mind when assessing bio-based products from glucose produced in a CWM. The results provide a good basis for future analyses of bio-based products, as they are also similar to values published by other authors for the US, bearing in mind the different impacts of corn production in the two regions.
Article
This research was undertaken to investigate the suitability of recycled construction and demolition materials as alternative pipe backfilling materials for stormwater and sewer pipes. Three commonly found recycled construction and demolition waste materials, (crushed brick, recycled concrete aggregate and reclaimed asphalt pavement) were investigated to assess their suitability as a pipe backfilling material. The physical, geotechnical and chemical properties of these construction and demolition materials were compared with local engineering and water authorities specifications for typical quarried materials so as to assess their performance as a viable substitute for virgin quarried aggregates in pipe backfilling applications. Physical and geotechnical characterisation tests such as particle size distribution, specific gravity, water absorption, Los Angeles abrasion, California Bearing Ratio and modified Proctor compaction tests were undertaken. Chemical properties were also determined, including organic content, pH, trace element or total concentration and leachate testing of the construction and demolition materials for a range of contaminant constituents. In terms of physical, geotechnical and chemical assessment for pipe backfilling applications, recycled concrete aggregate and crushed brick were found to have the properties recommended by environmental protection authorities while reclaimed asphalt pavement material did not meet some of the specified requirements. Also shear strength properties were found to be equivalent or superior to those of typical quarry backfilling materials. This research indicates that traditional considered waste materials can be reused viably as alternate pipe backfilling materials.
Article
Full-text available
NatureWorks® polylactide (PLA) is a versatile polymer made entirely from annually renewable resources. Within the framework of sustainability, NatureWorks LLC is working to continuously improve the environmental performance of its product portfolio and is using life cycle assessment as a tool to identify and measure environmental performance-improvement objectives and to benchmark PLA against the petroleum-based polymers with which it competes in the marketplace. NatureWorks' objectives include eliminating non-renewable energy use and the emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs), as well as minimizing non-valuable co-products and reducing water use. These objectives are accomplished through continual improvement of the PLA production technology and utilization of renewable energy for process energy as much as possible. NatureWorks is purchasing wind power-derived renewable energy certificates (RECs) in an amount equal to the electricity used in the PLA production system in a commitment to utilize renewable energy wherever possible. The use of renewable wind energy certificates reduces the environmental burden associated with electricity use. The PLA production system in 2006 emitted 0.27 kg CO 2 eq./kg PLA and used 27.2 MJ/kg PLA of fossil energy-reductions of 85% and 50%, respectively, compared to 2003 PLA eco-profile data. In the near future, further improvement of the process technology, combined with the utilization of wind power for the process electricity requirements, will make NatureWorks PLA pellets a GHG sink. This paper provides the cradle-to-polymer- factory-gate life cycle inventory data (eco-profiles) for the 2006 and the near-future PLA production systems and explains the use of RECs.
Article
Full-text available
The concept of sustainable product-service systems has emerged recently, and is distinct from the ideas of cleaner production, eco-design and design for the environment. The concept goes beyond the environmental optimisation of products and processes and requires radical and creative thinking to reduce environmental impacts by a factor of between four and 20 times while maintaining an acceptable quality of service. Sustainable product-services consider alternative socio-technical systems that can provide the essential end-use function, such as warmth or mobility, that an existing product offers. Four types are outlined—result services; shared utilisation services; product-life extension services; and demand side management. Sustainable product-service systems attempt to create designs that are sustainable in terms of environmental burden and resource use, whilst developing product concepts as parts of sustainable whole systems, that provide a service or function to meet essential needs.
Article
Full-text available
As attention to environmental problems grows, product life cycle management is becoming a crucial issue in realizing a sustainable society. Our objective is to provide the functions necessary for such a society while minimizing material and energy consumption. From this viewpoint, we should redefine the role of maintenance as a prime method for life cycle management. In this paper, we first discuss the changing role of maintenance from the perspective of life cycle management. Then, we present a maintenance framework that shows management cycles of maintenance activities during the product life cycle. According to this framework, we identify technical issues of maintenance and discuss the advances of technologies supporting the change in the role of maintenance.
Article
Full-text available
NatureWorks™ polylactide (PLA)1 is a versatile polymer produced by Cargill Dow LLC. Cargill Dow is building a global platform of sustainable polymers and chemicals entirely made from renewable resources. Cargill Dow's business philosophy is explained including the role of life cycle assessment (LCA), a tool used for measuring environmental sustainability and identifying environmental performance-improvement objectives. The paper gives an overview of applications of LCA to PLA production and provides insight into how they are utilized. The first application reviews the contributions to the gross fossil energy requirement for PLA (54 MJ/kg). In the second one PLA is compared with petrochemical-based polymers using fossil energy use, global warming and water use as the three impact indicators. The last application gives more details about the potential reductions in energy use and greenhouse gasses. Cargill Dow's 5–8 year objective is to decrease the fossil energy use from 54 MJ/kg PLA down to about 7 MJ/kg PLA. The objective for greenhouse gasses is a reduction from +1.8 down to −1.7 kg CO2 equivalents/kg PLA.
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents the potential of modelling a product’s life-cycle using the Unified Modelling Language (UML). The potential benefits and limitations are discussed. An example of a vacuum cleaner is cited in support of this approach. Model consistency across the various life cycle stages of the product is of major concern and an algorithm for constraint management is proposed and prospective research directions highlighted.
Article
Full-text available
Life-cycle assessment (LCA) models are becoming the principal decision support tools of waste management systems. This paper describes our experience with the use of EASEWASTE (Environmental Assessment of Solid Waste Systems and Technologies), a new computerized LCA-based model for integrated waste management. Our findings provide a quantitative understanding of waste management systems and may reveal consistent approaches to improve their environmental performances. EASEWASTE provides a versatile system modelling facility combined with a complete life-cycle impact assessment and in addition to the traditional impact categories addresses toxicity-related categories. New categories dealing with stored ecotoxicity and spoiled groundwater resources have been introduced. EASEWASTE has been applied in several studies, including full-scale assessments of waste management in Danish municipalities. These studies led to numerous modelling issues: the need of combining process-specific and input-specific emissions, the choice of a meaningful time horizon, the way of accounting for biological carbon emissions, the problem of stored ecotoxicity and aspects of crediting the waste management system with the savings inherent in avoided production of energy and materials. Interpretation of results showed that waste management systems can be designed in an environmentally sustainable manner where energy recovery processes lead to substantial avoidance of emissions and savings of resources.
Article
Full-text available
Lack of degradability and the closing of landfill sites as well as growing water and land pollution problems have led to concern about plastics. With the excessive use of plastics and increasing pressure being placed on capacities available for plastic waste disposal, the need for biodegradable plastics and biodegradation of plastic wastes has assumed increasing importance in the last few years. Awareness of the waste problem and its impact on the environment has awakened new interest in the area of degradable polymers. The interest in environmental issues is growing and there are increasing demands to develop material which do not burden the environment significantly. Biodegradation is necessary for water-soluble or water-immiscible polymers because they eventually enter streams which can neither be recycled nor incinerated. It is important to consider the microbial degradation of natural and synthetic polymers in order to understand what is necessary for biodegradation and the mechanisms involved. This requires understanding of the interactions between materials and microorganisms and the biochemical changes involved. Widespread studies on the biodegradation of plastics have been carried out in order to overcome the environmental problems associated with synthetic plastic waste. This paper reviews the current research on the biodegradation of biodegradable and also the conventional synthetic plastics and also use of various techniques for the analysis of degradation in vitro.
Article
Thinking in terms of product life cycles is one of the challenges facing manufacturers today: efforts to increase efficiency throughout the life cycle do not only mean extended responsibility of the parties concerned. Economically successful business areas can also be explored. Whether new service concepts are required, new regulations have been passed or consumer values are changing, the differences between business areas are disappearing. Life cycle management (LCM) considers the product life cycle as a whole and optimizes the interaction of product design, manufacturing and life cycle activities. The goal of this approach is to protect resources and maximize effectiveness by means of life cycle assessment, product data management, technical support and, last but not least, life cycle costing. This paper shows the existing approaches of LCM and discusses their prospects and further development.
Article
The various issues surrounding the concept of life cycle assessment (LCA), which was developed from the idea of comprehensive environmental assessments of products. Many initiatives taken to harmonize LCA methodology have resulted in methodological guidelines that include different and often conflicting methodological recommendations. An effort to reach consensus on a broad, international level was initiated within the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC), which resulted in SETAC Code of Practice. The volume of LCA research has grown rapidly since the beginning of the 1990s, with many scientific papers on LCA being published in other journals dedicated to environmental science.
Article
SRI Consulting's Process Economics Program (PEP) was commissioned by its clients to undertake a life-cycle assessment (LCA) for the purpose of comparing a biodegradable polymer with a conventional commodity polymer in packaging applications. Biodegradable polymers offer the potential of addressing a wide range of environmental concerns associated with conventional polymers such as greenhouse gas emissions and sustainability. LCA is a tool specifically developed for assessing the overall environmental burden of a product including the system used for manufacturing it and its end-of-life treatment. This paper provides a cradle-to-grave LCA of two polymers that may be used in food packaging applications: polylactide (PLA), which is a biodegradable polymer derived from corn; and polypropylene (PP), which is primarily derived from natural gas in the United States. An inventory analysis of the PLA and PP systems is presented. An impact assessment focused on global warming is also provided. Although measured field or facility data are preferred for a rigorous LCA, PEP data can provide a reasonable basis when measured data are unavailable. Energy inventories and greenhouse gas emissions are readily derived from PEP data, but other potentially relevant impact indicators are not. © 2004 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Environ Prog, 2004
Article
In the present paper, the validity of the waste hierarchy for treatment of solid waste is tested. This is done by using the tool life cycle assessment on recycling, incineration with heat recovery and landfilling of recyclable waste for Swedish conditions. A waste hierarchy suggesting the environmental preference of recycling over incineration over landfilling is found to be valid as a rule of thumb. There are however assumptions and value choices that can be made that make landfilling more preferable. This is the case for some waste fractions and for some of the environmental impacts studied when only a limited time period is considered. When transportation of waste by passenger car from the households is assumed for the other treatment options but not for landfilling, landfilling also gains in preference in some cases. The paper concludes that assumptions made including value choices with ethical aspects are of importance when ranking waste treatment options. Uncertainties related to the assessment of toxicological impacts can also influence the conclusions.
Article
Recycling of waste materials has been analysed from a life cycle perspective in a number of studies over the past 10–15 years. Publications comparing the global warming impact and total energy use of recycling versus incineration and landfilling were reviewed in order to find out to what extent they agree or contradict each other, and whether there are generally applicable conclusions to be drawn when certain key factors are considered. Four key factors with a significant influence on the ranking between recycling, incineration, and landfilling were identified. Producing materials from recycled resources is often, but not always, less energy intensive and causes less global warming impact than from virgin resources. For non-renewable materials the savings are of such a magnitude, that apparently the only really crucial factor is what material is replaced. For paper products, however, the savings of recycling are much smaller. The ranking between recycling and incineration of paper is sensitive to for instance paper quality, energy source avoided by incineration, and energy source at the mill.
Article
This paper analyses energy savings, GHG emission reductions and costs of bio-refinery systems for polylactic acid (PLA) production. The systems comprise ‘multi-functional’ uses of biomass resources, i.e. use of agricultural residues for energy consumption, use of by-products, and recycling and waste-to-energy recovery of materials. We evaluate the performance of these systems per kg of bio-based polymer produced and per ha of biomass production. The evaluation is done using data of Poland assuming that biomass and PLA production is embedded in a European energy and material market. First, the performance of different bio-refinery systems is investigated by means of a bottom-up chain analysis. Second, an analysis is applied that derives market prices of products and land depending on the own-price elasticity of demand. Thus, the costs of bio-refinery systems depending on the demand of land and material are determined. It is found that all PLA bio-refinery systems considered lead to net savings of non-renewable energy consumption of 70–220 GJ/(ha yr) and net GHG emission reductions of 3–17 Mg CO2eq/(ha yr). Most of these PLA bio-refinery systems lead to net costs for the overall system of up to 4600 €/(ha yr). PLA production from short rotation wood leads to net benefits of about 1100 €/(ha yr) if a high amount of a high value product, i.e. fibres, is produced. Multi-functionality is necessary to ensure the viability of PLA bio-refinery systems from biomass with regard to energy savings and GHG emission reduction. However, the multi-functional use of biomass does not contribute much to overall incomes. Multifunctional biomass use – especially the use of biomass residues for energy consumption – contributes significantly to savings of non-renewable energy sources. Own-price elasticity of the demand for materials influences the overall costs of the bio-refinery system strongly. The own-price elasticity of land demand markets could become important if bio-refineries are introduced on a large scale.
Article
The standards for management systems such as ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 are developing towards a higher degree of compatibility. At the same time, organisations increasingly integrate these systems. The paper discusses this development and presents different levels of integration. The aim is to suggest the next steps to take in order to improve an integration which promotes sustainable management. Product-oriented management and stakeholders are in focus and the standards for management systems and the need for a common integrated ISO standard are discussed. Finally, the need for changes in life style and needs is presented as crucial to the development of more sustainable management systems.
Article
The overall goal of the present study is to evaluate different strategies for treatment of solid waste in Sweden based on a life cycle perspective. Important goals are to identify advantages and disadvantages of different methods for treatment of solid waste, and to identify critical factors in the systems, including the background systems, which may significantly influence the results. Included in the study are landfilling, incineration, recycling, digestion and composting. The waste fractions considered are the combustible and recyclable or compostable fractions of municipal solid waste. The methodology used is life cycle assessment (LCA). The results can be used for policy decisions as well as strategic decisions on waste management systems. A waste hierarchy suggesting the environmental preference of recycling over incineration over landfilling is often put forward and used in waste policy making. LCAs can be used to test the waste hierarchy and identify situations where the hierarchy is not valid. Our results indicate that the waste hierarchy is valid as a rule of thumb. The results also suggest that a policy promoting recycling of paper and plastic materials, preferably combined with policies promoting the use of plastics replacing plastics made from virgin materials, leads to decreased use of total energy and emissions of gases contributing to global warming. If the waste can replace oil or coal as energy sources, and neither biofuels nor natural gas are alternatives, a policy promoting incineration of paper materials may be successful in reducing emissions of greenhouse gases.
Article
In light of increasing pressures to adopt a more sustainable approach to product design and manufacture, the requirement to develop sustainable products is one of the key challenges facing industry in the 21st century. Hence, the concept of developing sustainable products as well as services is evolving as a key element of Cleaner Production. Sustainable product development initiatives (mainly through eco-design) have been evolving for some time to support companies develop more sustainable products. Ireland has been running the highly successful Environmentally Superior Products (ESP) initiative that supports industrial companies to incorporate a more sustainable approach to the development of products and/or services. The lessons learned from the ESP and other global Sustainable Product and Service Developments in industry and research, are being used to develop a method for effective sustainable product and/or service development (SPSD) in industry. The method is designed to provide pragmatic guidance to business and industry for developing sustainable products and services as well as incorporating this approach within existing corporate strategy, cleaner production and product development systems. This method is being developed by the authors at the Environmental Policy and Management Group (EPMG), Department of Environmental Science and Technology,Imperial College London, UK in conjunction with industry and practitioners. The method provides a framework for implementing SPSD throughout the entire lifecycle of a product and/or service. It can be used to identify, assess and implement the options for optimum sustainability in the design and development of a product and/or service. This paper describes the key features of this method.
Article
Thinking in terms of product life cycles is one of the challenges facing manufacturers today: efforts to increase efficiency throughout the life cycle do not only lead to an extended responsibility of the concerned parties. As a result, economically successful business areas can be explored. Whether new service concepts are required, new regulations have been passed or consumers values are changing, the differences between business areas are disappearing. “Life Cycle Management” (LCM) considers the product life cycle as a whole and optimizes the interaction of product design, manufacturing and life cycle activities. The goal of this approach is to protect resources and maximize the effectiveness during usage by means of Life Cycle Assessment, Product Data Management, Technical Support and last but not least by Life Cycle Costing. This paper shows the existing approaches of LCM and discusses their visions and further development.
Article
A high temperature and shear rate capillary viscometer has been designed, constructed and recently commissioned. This device will be used to measure the viscosity of semi-solid metals under the high temperature and shear rate conditions, similar to those found in industry. Design criteria for the device included a requirement for a highly controllable temperature (±1°C) up to 650°C, capability for injection shear rates above 10,000s<sup align="right"> −1 </sup> and controllable injection profiles. The design of this viscometer was aided with the use of numerical modelling methods based on a power law thixotropic fluid flow relation. This analysis allowed calculation of required injection speeds and expected system forces. Computational modelling work, based on current power law fluid models, was also performed in order to investigate how the viscosity would be expected to fluctuate with shear rate and fraction solid. This data could then be used to compare with experimental work. The computational model was a 2D two-phase theoretical unsteady state model. This was used to evaluate the viscosity of semi-solid metals passing through the designed capillary viscometer at injection speeds of 0.075, 0.5 and 1 m/sec. The effects of fractions solid (f<sub align="right"> s </sub>) of the metal from 0.25, 0.3, 0.33 and 0.50 were also investigated. Strong correlations between these parameters and the resulting viscosity were noted.
Maintenance: changing role in life cycle management Towards unified modelling of product life-cycles Applications of lifecycle assessment to NatureWorks polylactide (PLA) production The eco-profiles for current and near-future NatureWorks polylactide (PLA) production
  • S Takata
  • F Kimura
  • F J A M Van Houten
  • E Westkämper
  • M Shpitalni
  • D Ceglarek
  • J G Lee
  • S G Lee
  • Y.-S Ma
  • E T H Vink
  • K R Rabago
  • D A Glassner
  • P R Gruber
  • E T H Vink
  • D A Glassner
  • J J Kolstad
  • R J Wooley
  • R P Connor
Takata, S., Kimura, F., van Houten, F.J.A.M., Westkämper, E., Shpitalni, M., Ceglarek, D., Lee, J., 2004. Maintenance: changing role in life cycle management. CIRP Annals e Manufacturing Technology 53 (2), 643e655. Thimm, G., Lee, S.G., Ma, Y.-S., 2006. Towards unified modelling of product life-cycles. Computers in Industry 57 (4), 331e341. Vink, E.T.H., Rabago, K.R., Glassner, D.A., Gruber, P.R., 2003. Applications of lifecycle assessment to NatureWorks polylactide (PLA) production. Polymer Degradation and Stability 80 (3), 403e419. Vink, E.T.H., Glassner, D.A., Kolstad, J.J., Wooley, R.J., O'Connor, R.P., 2007. The eco-profiles for current and near-future NatureWorks polylactide (PLA) production. Industrial Biotechnology 3 (1), 58e81. All data sources were peer reviewed by Ian Boustead.
Environmental assessments and waste management The physical science basis Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
  • G Finnveden
  • J Johansson
  • P Lind
  • Å Moberg
Finnveden, G., Johansson, J., Lind, P., Moberg, Å, 2005. Environmental assessments and waste management. Journal of Cleaner Production 13 (3), 213e229. IPCC Fourth Assessment Report, 2007. The physical science basis. In: Solomon, S., Qin, D., Manning, M., Chen, Z., Marquis, M., Averyt, K.B., Tignor, M., Miller, H.L. (Eds.), Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/ assessment-report/ar4/wg1/ar4-wg1-chapter2.pdf (Chapter 2).
Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions Thematic Strategy on the Sustainable use of
  • Final
  • Com
Final. COM, 2005. Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions. Thematic Strategy on the Sustainable use of Natural Resources Brussels COM(2005) 670 Final. COM, 2008. Communication from the Commission to the Council, the Euro-pean Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on the Sustainable Consumption and Production and Sustainable Industrial Policy Action Plan Brussels COM(2008) 397
Resource efficiency: Best Practices for the Recovery of Plastics Waste in EUROPE. APME. www.apme.org. Shah, Aamer Ali Biological degra-dation of plastics: a comprehensive review Life cycle management and life cycle thinking: putting a price on sustainability
  • A Schanssema
Schanssema, A., 2007. Resource efficiency: Best Practices for the Recovery of Plastics Waste in EUROPE. APME. www.apme.org. Shah, Aamer Ali, Hasan, Fariha, Hameed, Abdul, Ahmed, Safia, 2008. Biological degra-dation of plastics: a comprehensive review. Biotechnology Advances 26, 246e265. Swarr, T.E., 2006. Life cycle management and life cycle thinking: putting a price on sustainability. The International Journal of LCA 11 (4), 217e218.
Environmental Assessment of Bio-based Polymers and Natural Fibres
  • M Patel
  • C Bastiolo
  • L Marini
Patel, M., Bastiolo, C., Marini, L., 2003. Environmental Assessment of Bio-based Polymers and Natural Fibres. Utrecht University, The Nertherlands, p. 59.
Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament. Integrated Product Policy. Building on Environmental Life-Cycle Thinking. Commission of the European Communities
COM, 2003. Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament. Integrated Product Policy. Building on Environmental Life-Cycle Thinking. Commission of the European Communities, Brussels. COM(2003) 302 Final.
The physical science basis
  • S Solomon
  • D Qin
  • M Manning
  • Z Chen
  • M Marquis
  • K B Averyt
  • M Tignor
IPCC Fourth Assessment Report, 2007. The physical science basis. In: Solomon, S., Qin, D., Manning, M., Chen, Z., Marquis, M., Averyt, K.B., Tignor, M., Miller, H.L. (Eds.), Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/ assessment-report/ar4/wg1/ar4-wg1-chapter2.pdf (Chapter 2).
ISO 14040. Environmental Management. Life Cycle Assessment. Principles and Framework
ISO, 2006a. ISO 14040. Environmental Management. Life Cycle Assessment. Principles and Framework.
How to account for CO2 emissions from biomass in an LCA
  • A Rabl
  • A Benoist
  • D Dron
  • B Peuoertier
  • J V Spadaro
  • A Zoughaib
Rabl, A., Benoist, A., Dron, D., Peuoertier, B., Spadaro, J.V., Zoughaib, A., 2007. How to account for CO2 emissions from biomass in an LCA. International Journal on LCA 12 (5), 281.
Resource efficiency: Best Practices for the Recovery of Plastics Waste in EUROPE
  • A Schanssema
Schanssema, A., 2007. Resource efficiency: Best Practices for the Recovery of Plastics Waste in EUROPE. APME. www.apme.org.
ISO 14025, Environmental Labels and Declarations À Type III Environmental Declarations À Principles and Procedures
ISO, 2006c. ISO 14025, Environmental Labels and Declarations À Type III Environmental Declarations À Principles and Procedures.
The physical science basis
  • IPCC Fourth Assessment Report
Environmental assessments and waste management
  • Finnveden