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Abstract

Most of the global multiregional studies have looked at material footprint (MF) of either a nation or a region. A product-specific MF analysis, particularly when it comes to Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFVs), carried out using a multiregional input-output (MRIO)-based life-cycle assessment model creates a valuable knowledge contributing to both the global and national efforts to develop cleaner production. The EXIOBASE v.2 is used in order to analyze global life cycle material footprints of five types of passenger vehicles based on 10 metals (ores of iron, bauxite and aluminum, copper, lead, nickel, tin, uranium and thorium, zinc, precious metal, and other metals) and 9 minerals (chemical and fertilizer materials, clays and kaolin, limestone, gypsum, chalk, dolomite, salt, slate, other industrial minerals, building stones, gravel and sand, and other construction minerals). The novelty of this research is to develop a MRIO-based life cycle assessment approach, utilized for estimating the material footprint of each vehicle alternative considering regional and global supply chains. The results show that the manufacturing phase dominates the life-cycle material footprints of vehicles. The study concludes that the alternative fuel vehicles considered in this study have larger material footprint compared to conventional vehicles under all circumstances assumed by the study. The findings showed that 63% of all material footprints related to entire life cycle of electric vehicles are found in the U.S. territorial boundary. Battery manufacturing places a huge burden on the material footprint of electric vehicles, accounting for over 65% of the direct impacts, and more than half of the total material footprint under the current techno-economic circumstances. The sources of supply of raw materials that are critical to deployment of alternative fuel vehicles should be diversified if the U.S. is to safeguard the sustainable future of the transportation sector.

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... The use of LCA to evaluate the environmental efficiency of ICEVs is also very popular because ICEVs are usually used as a control group to demonstrate that the implementation of EVs can improve environmental efficiency. PHEV and HEV appear almost the same number of times because they are usually discussed together [8,53], while FCEV papers mainly focus on biofuel and HFCEVs. EREVs, which are vehicles with a fuel type between PHEVs and EVs, offer significant advantages in terms of saving mineral resources and fossil energy, with the mineral resource consumption of EREVs being 14.68% lower than that of HEVs and the fossil energy consumption being 34.72% lower than that of ICEVs [34]. ...
... LCI is generally used to analyze the environmental efficiency of NEVs in raw-material mining and extraction. The raw materials required for assembly into NEVs are divided into metal [100] and nonmetal [53,101], and the environmental efficiency of each step of raw materials from mining to processing of semi-finished products were studied in terms of material flow [102]. Among the material flows discussed, copper [103,104], iron [18], and lithium [105] are the most discussed material flows, and different mineral sources [106] can lead to different environmental efficiencies. ...
... The environmental impact of lithium carbonate material flow occupies a very small proportion of the production stage of pure electric vehicles [106], but the material flow of cobalt can greatly affect the environmental efficiency of production [107]. Material flow analysis can find the weak points of material flow in the production process [53,108]. Considering the hidden recovery potential of metal material flow, the stability risk of the supply chain can be greatly reduced, particularly for lithium iron phosphate batteries (LiFePO 4 ) and lithium nickel cobalt manganese acid (NMC) [109]. ...
Article
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New energy vehicles (NEVs), especially electric vehicles (EVs), address the important task of reducing the greenhouse effect. It is particularly important to measure the environmental efficiency of new energy vehicles, and the life cycle analysis (LCA) model provides a comprehensive evaluation method of environmental efficiency. To provide researchers with knowledge regarding the research trends of LCA in NEVs, a total of 282 related studies were counted from the Web of Science database and analyzed regarding their research contents, research preferences, and research trends. The conclusion drawn from this research is that the stages of energy resource extraction and collection, carrier production and energy transportation, maintenance, and replacement are not considered to be research links. The stages of material, equipment, and car transportation and operation equipment settling, and forms of use need to be considered in future research. Hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (HFCEVs), vehicle type classification, the water footprint, battery recovery and reuse, and battery aging are the focus of further research, and comprehensive evaluation combined with more evaluation methods is the direction needed for the optimization of LCA. According to the results of this study regarding EV and hybrid power vehicles (including plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV), fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEV), hybrid electric vehicles (HEV), and extended range electric vehicles (EREV)), well-to-wheel (WTW) average carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions have been less than those in the same period of gasoline internal combustion engine vehicles (GICEV). However, EV and hybrid electric vehicle production CO2 emissions have been greater than those during the same period of GICEV and the total CO2 emissions of EV have been less than during the same period of GICEV.
... The life cycle assessment (LCA) has been widely utilized to assess the environmental footprints across the EV's life cycle phases, including material extraction, manufacturing, usage, and end-of-life (Sen, Kucukvar, Onat, & Tatari, 2020;Sen, Onat, Kucukvar, & Tatari, 2019;Onat et al. 2014Onat et al. a,b, 2019. Usai et al. (2021) conducted an LCA on fuel cell systems for fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEVs) technologies to understand the environmental impacts associated with the use of FCEVs in the United States. ...
... The life cycle assessment (LCA) has been widely utilized to assess the environmental footprints across the EV's life cycle phases, including material extraction, manufacturing, usage, and end-of-life (Sen, Kucukvar, Onat, & Tatari, 2020;Sen, Onat, Kucukvar, & Tatari, 2019;Onat et al. 2014Onat et al. a,b, 2019. Usai et al. (2021) conducted an LCA on fuel cell systems for fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEVs) technologies to understand the environmental impacts associated with the use of FCEVs in the United States. ...
Article
Sustainable transportation is at the hearth of the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and is directly linked to many SDGs including SDG3 (good health and well‐being), SDG11 (sustainable cities and societies), SDG 7 (clean energy), SDG13 (climate), and SDG 12 (sustainable production and consumption). European countries have been promoting a widespread adoption of electric vehicles to achieve SDGs through resilient, technology‐driven, and human‐centric mobility. However, potential environmental benefits of electric vehicles depend on various regional factors such as the fuel efficiency and source of electricity generation. At the same time, the economic benefits of mobility to the economy are an important factor for evaluating the relative performance of electric vehicles. To this end, this research paper presents the first empirical analysis of the regionalized eco‐efficiency assessment of electric vehicles across Europe. We developed an integrated regionalized eco‐efficiency performance score, by employing life cycle assessment and principal component analysis techniques to assess the eco‐efficiency performance of electric vehicles in Europe. Considering the energy mix for electricity generation, three environmental indicators (carbon footprint, water consumption, and energy use) and one economic (contribution to national gross domestic product) indicator were used to compute the eco‐efficiency scores for 28 European countries. The eco‐efficiency scores for each corresponding country were calculated, compared, and clustered in as high, medium, and low eco‐efficiency score countries. The clvalid package of R software's archive network is used to determine the optimal number of clusters for the EES dataset. The results of the comparative study show that Denmark, Germany, Italy, Portugal, and Spain have a competitive advantage in eco‐efficiency performance compared to the other European countries. The regionalized distribution of the eco‐efficiency performance shows that the countries with the highest ecoefficiency score are located on the west side of Europe. Researches and policymakers can benefit from the applied methodology as well as the results to provide country‐specific investment policies to achieve higher benefits towards a transition to electric mobility in Europe.
... The environmental impact of every source product used for manufacturing vehicles should not be only analyzed in terms of commodity type (e.g., lithium), but other factors such as ore bodies' nature (e.g., pegmatitic or brine reservoirs), mining (e.g., rock extraction or brine pumping) and processing methods (e.g., evaporation or concentration) should also be considered. This hypothesis makes it necessary to revisit previous findings to determine if the existence of heterogeneity among a same commodity type leads to a significant difference in the environmental footprint associated to the manufacturing process and use of internal combustion and electric vehicles (Sen et al., 2019). ...
Article
Several studies support that the battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are more environmentally friendly than internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs). However, these studies assume that one unit of metal used in the manufacturing process is a commodity in terms of its environmental footprint. In this study, estimations for water and energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions are used as proxies of the environmental footprint variability within the production of various metals used in the automotive industry. Through these estimations, probability distribution functions are fit to assess the sustainability of BEVs and ICEVs when considering the commodities' environmental heterogeneity. Two scenarios are assessed, which considers: (1) the manufacture of vehicles, and (2) their useful life. The results show the existence of a range of potential environmental footprints for BEVs and ICEVs, depending on the footprints of the specific metals being used. Including this input's variability, when only the manufacturing process is considered, ICEVs outperform BEVs in most of the realization cases and for all the analyzed indicators. However, if their useful life is incorporated, the BEV consistently produces significantly less carbon dioxide emissions, as well as consume the same energy and more water than ICEV. A special case study for lithium is presented as it has shown to be a critical resource and a major environmental concern for BEV production. The results show that by switching lithium from pegmatite to brine, the water consumption required for manufacturing the vehicles is reduced by 0.17%, which is contrary to the common view regarding water use in brine extraction.
... Due to the fact that the majority of environmental impact from transportation comes from fuel use (see, e.g., Chan et al., 2013;Cooney et al., 2013), and because other sources of environmental harm related to chassis material, paint, end-of-life treatment and particles from tires are not substantially affected by choice of vehicle model (within the same category of vehicles), it was decided to focus on different fuel systems. In the case of electricity as a fuel system, batteries were included since it is a feature specific to electric vehicles that represents a significant amount of environmental impact (see, e.g., Cusenza et al., 2019;Sen et al., 2019). The specific fuel systems were identified by looking at what possible fuels were available on the Swedish market. ...
Article
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... EV and battery manufacturing [13,14] and battery recycling processes increase the carbon and material footprint of EVs. The material footprint of EVs is reported to be not lower than ICEVs [15]. ...
Article
The depletion of fossil resources, energy dependency, increase in fuel costs and environmental concerns caused by fossil fuel vehicles, along with the advances in battery technology and their manufacturing processes have promoted a transition towards electric vehicles (EV). Depending on inner and external factors, some countries fastly adopted the new technology, whereas others act more slowly. In this study, an overview of Turkey's position in EV technology is presented. The current EV, charging infrastructure, and battery market, as well as EV-related regulations, research and development (R&D) activities, and industry in the country are evaluated. An EV charging station (EVCS) density map of Turkey is formed to illustrate the deficiencies in the existing charging infrastructure. The challenges and opportunities in the country are discussed and presented in the form of a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) analysis and the study is concluded with a list of recommendations. Currently, the public in Turkey is focused on the state-supported “local brand EV” project. However, the acceptance of EVs is still low in the country. To that end, social awareness-raising activities, especially electric public transportation and electric public fleets, should be promoted for EVs to achieve their higher visibility. The EVCS infrastructure should be further expanded in the eastern part of Turkey and further steps should be taken regarding EV/EVCS-related incentives.
... Transportation is playing a significant role in achieving the goals of sustainable development (Walker & Cook, 2009). To solve the world's most significant issue in sustainability development, the United Nations (UNs) set up the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2000 (Halisçelik & Soytas, 2019;Sen, Onat, Kucukvar, & Tatari, 2019). In 2015, the global society worked to improve for the next 15 years (2000)(2001)(2002)(2003)(2004)(2005)(2006)(2007)(2008)(2009)(2010)(2011)(2012)(2013)(2014)(2015) agreement to direct the improvement of economics, guarantee that it would not happen unless the environment is being sustained, and put poverty into an end. ...
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The sustainability impact of air transportation has become crucial to communities. Airports around the world are forced to be transparent with the society and to declare their sustainability results. As the sustainability goals and objectives and due to its multi‐dimension aspects that are needed to be decided of and subsequently improved, the decision has been taken, and the parameters have been selected due to its significance in this field. This research presents a managerial approach combining the optimization‐based frontier approach with the Global Report Initiative's comprehensive sustainability database for selected 30 major international airports based on data availability. In this regard, eco‐efficiency analysis is carried out with four different models using input‐oriented modeling with multiple undesirable environmental inputs (energy, carbon, water, and waste) and desirable outputs (revenue, passenger and employment) to compare efficiency and sustainability levels of airports in different contexts. Finally, performance improvement targets of each environmental indicators are presented for the airports. These comparative models reveal different frontier airports, which provide the opportunity to analyze diversified reference points for the same decision‐making unit. The presented statistical study has shown that San Francisco, Hong Kong, Hamad International Airport are the most efficient airports in terms of overall sustainability performance based on collected data and selected indicators. The authors also concluded that there is a discrepancy in sustainability data reporting between airports, and there is a need for collecting complete, consistent and real‐time social, environmental, economic, and governance data, to better compare and evaluate the performance of each airport from a sustainability perspective.
... Integrating empirical methods with sustainability assessment tools can deliver promising results to support decision making. For future research, the authors recommend the use of an integrated LCSA approach (Kucukvar et al., 2018;Sen et al., 2019;Onat et al., 2019;Onat et al., 2015;Onat et al., 2014-A;Onat et al., 2014-B;Tatari and Kucukvar, 2012; Proceedings of the 2nd African International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Operations Management Harare, Zimbabwe, December 7-10, 2020 Kucukvar et al., 2016-A;Kucukvar and Samadi, 2015;Park et al., 2017;Kucukvar et al., 2016-B); material footprint analysis Kucukvar et al., 2019-A;Kucukvar et al., 2019-B); and "Economic input-output (EIO) analysis" (Egilmez et al., 2013), merged with other DM models, for instance like the Fuzzy-MCDM model (Onat et al., 2016-A), prognosticate approach (Shaikh et al., 2017;Abdella et al., 2019-B;Al-Sheeb et al., 2019), autonomous computational models (Noori et al., 2016;Onat et al., 2017), and system thinking approaches (Ercan et al., 2016;Onat et al., 2016-B;Onat et al., 2016-C;Alirezaei et al., 2017;Kelly et al., 2019) covering the three pillars of sustainability. Additionally, multivariate regression models can be used for selecting response variables to assist the aggregation step while analyzing sustainability Abdella et al., (2016). ...
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Sustainable aviation practices have significantly reduced Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions over the years. However, these practices have not shaped the aviation industry in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) to its full potential. The increasing volume of air traffic and the benefits reaped in this sector has hindered sustainable airline operations. This paper brings up a small scale-literature review on several tools and methods used for sustainability assessment in the aviation industry to address this concern, covering all the socio-economic and environmental sustainability dimensions. A review of various models and techniques used in the eco-efficiency assessment for sustainable airline operations are also discussed. Decision Support Systems (DSS) using Artificial Intelligence (AI), Deep learning, and Neural Network (NN) models also formed the basis of this study. This paper's tools and models support strategic and tactical decision-making to foster sustainable operations in the aviation industry; thus, helping mitigate the current challenges.
... Electrification of transport is a very important objective at the world level in order to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It is estimated that the number of electric vehicles (EVs), provided that several environmental and resource burdens are overcome, will be over 2.5 billion in 2050 [36,37]. The EVs of the future will have electronic components fabricated from several critical and light metals, such as Co, Ni, Li, Al and Mg, as well as rare earth elements (REEs) such as Nd and Dy. ...
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The social license to operate (SLO) is an informal social contract that aims to bridge the gap among the views of the most important stakeholders involved in mining activities. The novelty of this paper lies in the fact that it discusses the current situation and the future prospects of granting a SLO, mainly at the European Union (EU) level, by considering the mine of the future, in terms of deep sea and landfill mining, and the criticality of raw materials that are required by high tech products as well as by emerging and green technologies. Also, it highlights the factors that may affect the views of all involved stakeholders, focusing on the joint efforts that are required by the industry and the society as well as on the main technological, social, political and legal issues which are relevant to the process. It is believed that if trust is developed between the involved stakeholders the SLO may prove an important tool in future mining in order to safeguard the supply of raw materials, minimize the environmental footprint and improve the quality of life in the affected regions. Finally, a conceptual flowsheet involving the main steps that may be followed for granting a SLO is proposed.
... In this case, replacing existing bare concrete with a higher albedo and more environmental-friendly material may be preferred by city planners and policymakers. Limecrete is an economic solution that could address groundwater contamination in the area, reduce the carbon footprint for the applied material (Kwan and Ling, 2017;Sen et al., 2019), and although sediment deposition in certain reaches could be make it less effective, it can overall provide a cooling effect for the substrate temperature and therefore river water temperature during low flow periods. ...
Article
Managing river temperature in highly urbanized stream systems is critical for maintaining aquatic ecosystems and associated beneficial uses. In this work, we updated and utilized a mechanistic river temperature model, i-Tree Cool River, to evaluate the cooling impacts of two ecological restoration scenarios: (1) an alternative streambed material limecrete and (2) shading effects of tree planting in riparian areas. The i-Tree Cool River model was modified to account for diurnal fluctuations of streambed temperature, which is relevant in shallow urban streams where lack of natural shading combined with low heat capacity of the water column can make diurnal fluctuations relatively extreme. The model was calibrated and validated on a 4.2 km reach of Compton Creek in the Los Angeles River watershed, California. Two native fish, arroyo chub (Gila orcuttii) and unarmored threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus williamsoni), were considered the target species for assessing thermal habitat suitability. Key findings include: (1) model performance was improved when accounting for diurnal fluctuations in bed temperature (R² increased from 0.43 to 0.68); and (2) substrate rehabilitation and tree planting can potentially reduce summertime temperatures to within the documented spawning temperature thresholds for the focal fish species. Using limecrete as an alternative material for the concrete bottom decreased the median river temperature metrics: maximum weekly maximum, maximum weekly average, and minimum weekly minimum temperatures by an average of 3 °C (13%) to 20.4 °C, 19.7 °C, and 17.8 °C, respectively. Tree planting in the riparian corridor decreased the average river temperature metrics by an average of 0.9 °C (4%) to 22.7 °C, 22 °C, and 19 °C, respectively. Combining the two scenarios decreased the river temperature metrics by an average of 4 °C (18%) to 18.2 °C. Therefore, water temperature would not be a limiting factor in potential reintroduction of the focal fish species to Compton Creek if restoration were implemented. Implications of this work could be used by urban forest and water managers for restoring thermally polluted rivers in other urban areas.
... Chen et al. (2016) (2017) presented a well-to-wheel assessment of the energy use, GHG emission, and economic cost for conventional and potentially feasible AFV pathways in Lebanon. Sen et al. (2019) improved a multi-regional input-output-based life cycle assessment approach for estimating the material footprint of each AFV. Brito et al. (2020) examined fuel price elasticities of market shares of AFVs in Brazil. ...
Article
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are one of the biggest challenging environmental problems globally, which leads countries to reduce their environmental impact in various disciplines. One of the most negative effects on the environment can be seen in the transportation area. It has been seen as a promising way to reduce emissions from transport with various alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs). This study aims to develop a multi-criteria decision-making (MCDM) methodology to prioritize the various AFVs for sustainable transport. The assessment of AFVs can be considered an MCDM problem due to the involvement of several conflicting criteria. We thus develop a novel multi-criteria decision-making methodology based on fuzzy Full Consistency Method (FUCOM-F) and neutrosophic fuzzy Measurement Alternatives and Ranking according to the COmpromise Solution (MARCOS) framework for the assessment of the AFVs. The proposed methodology is applied to prioritize the various AFVs in New Jersey, U.S. According to the findings, the most significant drivers for AFV selection are purchase cost, energy cost, and social benefits, respectively. The evaluation results also show that electric vehicles can serve as an effective approach to reducing carbon emissions for New Jersey. In addition, a comparative analysis is conducted to indicate the out-performance of the proposed multi-criteria methodology.
... Use of electric vehicles differs from use of vehicles with the combustion engine in terms of efficiency and performance. The research that has been carried out so far is connected with, e.g., assessment of environmental impacts of materials and elements in the life cycle of electric cars which is presented in [19]. Onat et al. [20] present a study of the environmental impact of electric cars powered by renewable energy sources and economic assessment based on LCC (Life Cycle Cost) method for the United States. ...
Article
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... The life-cycle assessment (LCA) method is particularly used in assessing the environmental impacts associated with all stages of a product's life (Singh et al., 2011;Tatari et al., 2012). Furthermore, the LCA is a four-stage assessing tool, which begins in the first stage by identifying the purpose and scope of the work, illustrates the system boundaries, and defining the functional unit of analysis; the second stage involves data collection and establishing the energy flows for each life stage of the product; the third stage includes the categorization of environmental impacts (impact categories) and sorting the environmental problems in their relative impact categories; in the fourth stage, the quantified data are interpreted and evaluated so that the best alternative can be selected (Sen et al., 2019(Sen et al., , 2020Singh et al., 2011). ...
Article
The construction industry is responsible for a significant amount of raw material consumption and environmental footprints. Therefore, sustainable construction became a hot topic, which strives to reduce material consumption, limit constructional waste disposal, and decrease contribution to climate change. In line with Qatar’s commit- ment to organizing a sustainable FIFA World Cup in 2022, this study aims to conduct an environmental life cycle assessment (LCA) for the construction of the Education City Stadium. The work presented here provides the first empirical LCA for analyzing the environmental and economic impacts of circular economy application in a World Cup stadium. In this research, the cyclopean concrete (CYC) methodology was utilized, which incorporate the site excavated boulders with the concrete mix to cast the under-raft foundation of the stadium. This approach was compared to the conventional concrete (CC) casting approach to assess the extent to which the newly developed methodology can reduce the environmental and economic burdens. The obtained results have shown a 32% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions when adapting the CYC approach. Thus, the CYC holds a strong promise to achieve the required structural behavior with a low-cost alternative material from existing waste products in Qatar and a lower environmental impact than the CC.
... Only one article [50] is included in "construction materials" sub-cluster. The advantages of BEVs are highlighted through a Material Footprint (MF) analysis also considering the upstream material flows. ...
Conference Paper
The Techno-Economic Analysis (TEA) is extensively carried out in the engineering world, and many methodologies exist for conducting it. For selecting a proper TEA methodology, an adequate knowledge of existing methodologies, including the most recent and innovative ones, can represent a useful tool for both scholars and practitioners. To facilitate this learning process, this research study aims to provide a schematic and effective guide for selecting the proper TEA methodology, highlighting their key features in a concise overview. This is the first literature review that collect and summarize different existing TEA methodologies for a specific sector, offering a thorough guide for their application. In this study, the considered area of application is represented by the entire mobility sector. In particular, it is intended to provide to the reader a list of articles that include reproducible methodologies. Therefore, only articles that clearly and explicitly describe the mathematical algorithm or the functionality of software are selected. The analysis and the comparison of the various research papers showed that TEA is mainly used for feasibility studies, optimization, best-case scenario selection and benefit analysis. TEA is also commonly carried out together with a sensitivity analysis. In addition, it can be detected that, in the last 10 years, TEA has been mostly applied to electrified vehicles. This result demonstrates a desire to promote renewable solutions through evidence-based analysis. Other mobility sub-sectors promoting renewable solutions are the biofuel production and the infrastructures (hydrogen refueling stations and BEVs charging stations) for the mobility support. Results of the work also highlight how TEA applied to biofuel production mostly includes the minimization of environmental impacts.
... The extraction of these raw materials is also associated with irreversible environmental impacts. If the raw material is only found in a few places on earth, an additional factor generating further emissivity arises -transport to the place of further processing (Sen et al., 2019). The use of unconventional materials in design, which require complex technological processes, also contributes to the complication of repairs of components. ...
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Engines powered by compressed air as a source of propulsion are known for many years. Nevertheless, this type of drive is not commonly used. The main reason for not using commonly is the problem with the low energy density of the compressed air. They offer a number of advantages, primarily focusing on the possibility of significantly lowering the emissions of the engine. Their emissivity mainly depends on the method of obtaining compressed air. This also has an impact on the economic aspects of the drive. Currently there are only a few, ready to implement, compressed air powered engine solutions available on the market. A major advantage is the ability to convert internal combustion engines to run with compressed air. The study provides a literature review of solutions, focusing on a multifaceted analysis of pneumatic drives. Increasing vehicle approval requirements relating to their emissions performance are encouraging for the search of alternative power sources. This creates an opportunity for the development of unpopular propulsion systems, including pneumatic engines. Analysing the works of some researchers, it is possible to notice a significant increase in the efficiency of the drive, which may contribute to its popularisation.
... While stronger sales of BEVs lead to higher electricity emissions ( Fig. 3d and i), these are however relatively small compared to lower emissions from fuel production (+0.25 Gt CO 2 vs. −0.5 Gt CO 2 , Fig. 3k). Finally, since BEVs are material intensive 30 , an additional 30 Mt CO 2 embodied in vehicle production can be observed. However, these could be more than compensated by ambitious recycling and reuse practices (+0.03 vs. −0.5 Gt CO 2 , Supplementary Fig. 7). ...
Article
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Large-scale electric vehicle adoption can greatly reduce emissions from vehicle tailpipes. However, analysts have cautioned that it can come with increased indirect emissions from electricity and battery production that are not commonly regulated by transport policies. We combine integrated energy modeling and life cycle assessment to compare optimal policy scenarios that price emissions at the tailpipe only, versus both tailpipe and indirect emissions. Surprisingly, scenarios that also price indirect emissions exhibit higher, rather than reduced, sales of electric vehicles, while yielding lower cumulative tailpipe and indirect emissions. Expected technological change ensures that emissions from electricity and battery production are more than offset by reduced emissions of gasoline production. Given continued dec-arbonization of electricity supply, results show that a large-scale adoption of electric vehicles is able to reduce CO2 emissions through more channels than previously expected. Further, carbon pricing of stationary sources will also favor electric vehicles.
... These models are considered to be an extended version of the single-region IO models Steen-Olsen et al., 2012). The associated environmental impacts of consumption processes for one region can be attributed to different production sectors linking the inter-regional supply chain (Sen et al., 2019;Wiedmann et al., 2007). There is a significant number of researches focused on MRIO analysis concerning CBA in the food industry. ...
Article
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This paper presents an integrated approach combining the optimization-based frontier model with a global multiregional input–output (MRIO) analysis for food consumption in Europe. The weighted and conventional data envelopment analysis models are coupled with production and consumption-based environmental and economic footprint data obtained from the environmental footprint explorer database. Eco-efficiency assessment is carried out using multiple undesirable environmental outputs such as carbon emission, total energy consumption, land use, material use, water use, and one desirable economic output, which is the gross value-added (GVA). This assessment indicates an efficiency level of each economic activity associated with its environmental impacts and policies are made as a result of the efficiency level to propose an equilibrium between economic development and environmental impacts. Finally, a sensitivity analysis of each parameter, variability analysis between weighted and non-weighted models, and performance improvement projections are presented. Based on the results, four countries become efficient when moving from production-based accounting (PBA) to consumption-based accounting (CBA). France, United Kingdom, Italy, and Sweden are efficient countries in both findings. Denmark caused the highest carbon emission from the production point of view. Germany is the largest importer in all environmental categories such as carbon emission, energy usage, material use, land use, and water use. Additionally, the weight-restricted model indicated a noticeable difference concerning the eco-efficiency scores under the PBA and CBA approach, where land use and material footprint categories were found to be the most sensitive parameters for eco-efficiency scores. The authors believe that this integrated approach will aid in decision-making and help build a composite eco-efficiency score when comparing the performance of food consumption with multiple environmental and economic metrics.
... For instance, based on a normalized vehicle lifetime mileage (150,000 km) the total lifecycle GHG emissions of a medium-size EV can vary in the range between 10 and 52.5 tons while an ICEV varies between 26 and 68.7 tons of CO 2 equivalent [5]. However, the environmental and energy-related performance of EVs strongly depends on the carbon intensity of the electricity mix [6][7][8][9], battery production [10][11][12][13] and disposal [14,15]. Besides that, at the current level of EVs technological development, it seems that this technology may lead to an increase in the levels of eutrophication, ecotoxicity, and human toxicity when compared to ICEVs mainly due to the production phase [16][17][18]. ...
Article
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... This new framework was first proposed by Ref. [133], which integrates three dimensions of sustainable development into Life Cycle Analysis [134,135]. Life cycle assessment methods are widely used in the literature for environmental assessment of energy [136][137][138][139][140], buildings [141,142], transportation [143][144][145][146][147][148][149], material footprint [150], infrastructures [151,152]. Although LCA method entails detailed sustainability analysis on a product basis, they partly consider the supply chain-based indirect impacts, which is also known as 'cut-off' [149,153]. ...
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This paper conducts a global review and a macro-level supply chain analysis focusing on carbon footprint of construction industry worldwide for the period between 2009 and 2020 using the Scopus database. A total of 1833 journal articles are revealed with focus on carbon footprint in the field of construction in general, of which only 115 (6% of the total) studies have a macro-level analysis of the construction sector, providing a more holistic overview of the construction sector from various aspects. These macro-level studies were reviewed and classified based on journal, country, year, method, scope of analysis, type of construction, and period. The findings showed that approximately 60% of these studies focus on the Chinese construction industry and the majority of studies analyzed national-level (75%) and city-level (18%) carbon footprints of construction. On the contrary, global-level analysis has a lower share, which accounted for only 6% of reviewed articles. The review showed that more than 20% of studies use the input-output analysis as the main methodological approach to quantify macro-level carbon emission from construction sector, which is followed by the process-based life cycle assessment with 10% share, where more bottom-up approaches are employed. There are only a handful of articles found in the literature using a hybrid life cycle assessment and global multiregional input-output analysis for carbon footprint accounting of construction. Furthermore, there is also no study found in the literature, which presented a comprehensive regional and global supply chain analysis of construction carbon footprints. The results revealed that the largest portion of carbon emissions stem from the regional and global supply chains of the construction industries. The authors concluded that carbon reduction policies should not only consider the limited regional impacts; however, it must take into account the role of indirect, complex and interconnected global supply chains of construction industries.
... However, whether LIPB is more environmental than LIB remains unknown, as these two types of batteries are seldom compared in terms of environmental impacts. Thirdly, the natural reserves of metals that are used in batteries, such as lithium and cobalt, are being depleted at an unprecedented speed due to the vast demands from CEs and electric vehicles (EVs) [8]. A proper life cycle management of MPB could be highly important to the sustainable development of these industries. ...
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Mobile power bank (MPB) is an emerging consumer electronic that stores and delivers electricity to other electronics. Nowadays, MPBs are produced and discarded in massive quantities, yet their environmental impacts have never been quantitatively evaluated. Employing a life cycle assessment (LCA) approach, this study assesses the life cycle environmental impacts of MPBs, with a specific focus on comparing the environmental performance of different MPBs that are based on two types of batteries, namely, lithium-ion battery (LIB) and lithium-ion polymer battery (LIPB). The results suggest that battery production is the greatest contributor to the environmental impacts of both MPBs. LIPB based MPB is environmentally friendlier due to its higher energy density and longer cycle life. In addition, it is found that recycling can reduce the environmental burden of MPB industry as well as ease the vast depletion of metals such as cobalt and copper. The sensitivity analysis shows that figuring out an optimal retirement point and using less carbon-intensive electricity can reduce the climate change potential of MPBs. This study provides recommendations to further improve the environmental performance of MPB, including the usage of more sustainable cathode materials, market promoting direction, and formulation of end-of-life management policy.
... Electric vehicle technologies are attractive and eco-efficient alternatives to conventional gasoline vehicles due to their great potential to minimize the externalities arising from road transportation including air pollution and associated health impacts on urban population [7], global climate change [8], energy consumption [9] material use [10], and water footprint [11]. There is a growing movement toward alternative vehicles technologies around the world. ...
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The United States Environmentally-Extended Input-Output (USEEIO) model includes commercial enterprises from 386 industrial sectors of the economy. The purpose of this work is to model the commercial generation of three streams of solid waste from USEEIO sectors: hazardous waste, non-hazardous waste excluding construction, and non-hazardous waste from construction. The waste accounts cover 536 waste materials, with commercial non-hazardous waste presently limited to municipal solid waste and construction and demolition debris. Total combined generation for all streams based on 2015 economic activity is approximately 775 million metric tons, with concrete from construction activities accounting for 44% of this mass. The chemical and plastics industries generate the most commercial hazardous waste per dollar of economic output. In most cases, waste materials such as paper, plastic, and metals are generated in greater quantities per dollar of industry output when compared to commercial construction materials and hazardous waste. When considering direct waste generation within an industry, USEEIO model rankings identified the highway and street construction and chemical manufacturing industries as potential areas to continue to pursue new innovations in material use. The rankings change when considering final consumption of goods and services, with various construction industries and state and local governments becoming more prominent. The full detailed waste models are publicly available and will be incorporated into future USEEIO releases. Quantification of waste material generation across the economy is an essential part of decision making because it will highlight areas where intervention may be beneficial.
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Copper is an essential element for electric vehicle (EV). Currently, little efforts have been directed toward understanding the EV-copper-resource-environment nexus. Autoregressive integrated moving average model combined with dynamic material flow analysis was developed for the nexus analysis in Fujian in China due to its vigorous EV promotion. Results showed that standardized passenger vehicle ownership would increase 3.34 times from 2018 to the peak year 2042, with about 12 times’ and 139 times’ increase of EV sales in baseline and aggressive scenarios respectively. Accordingly, EV-induced additional copper demand in Fujian would increase the same times as EV sales since 2018, leading to the expansion of copper processing that would incur increasing ripple effects, including 1) aggressive scenario's accumulative additional copper ore demand during 2013-2050 exceed 40 times Chinese reserve in 2016; 2) about 62% of on-road EV's CO2eq reduction compared with Fuel vehicle would be offset by CO2 emissions from baseline scenario's additional copper processing under Chinese power structure in 2018. Additionally, many other pollutants will also increasingly be emitted in response to the growing EV-induced additional materials’ processing, which can further extend ripple effects from local to global environment, and finally threaten global sustainability. The ripple effects indicated the importance of pyramid tip product catalog pedigree to promote international cooperation in products’ lifecycle management and extend cleaner production to cleaner consumption, efficient fleet cleaner production technologies, longer products’ lifespan, circular design, and cleaner power supply.
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This paper proposes a hierarchical optimization energy management strategy to suppress the battery aging in plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. In the first-level, a variable-threshold dynamic programming algorithm to distribute the power between the energy storage system and the engine is proposed. By adding supercapacitor to form the hybrid energy storage system, and using adaptive low-pass filtering algorithm, the power between the battery and the supercapacitor is distributed. To control the supercapacitor and battery to work within the capacity range, a power limits management module for redistributing the power between the engine, the supercapacitor and the battery is considered. The adaptive low-pass filtering algorithm and power limits management module constitute adaptive power allocation method in the second-level. After that, the rain-flow counting algorithm is applied in this paper to calculate battery aging cost. By using the rain-flow counting algorithm, the battery performances are analyzed, and the results show that the adaptive power allocation method can improve the battery service life by about 54.9% compared with the global dynamic programming algorithm. Considering the initial cost of the supercapacitor, the costs of battery aging, fuel consumption, electricity consumption, and management cost of retired batteries, compared with the global dynamic programming algorithm, the life cycle economy of the vehicle is improved by 12.4% under the proposed method.
Conference Paper
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Eco-efficiency assessment is of great importance for monitoring and managing environmental and economic aspects of sustainable development. The eco-efficiency indicators are required to assess and measure the impact of multiple environmental aspects per unit of economic value-added. The aggregation of multiple environmental impacts in the presence of high correlation is a critical challenge to sustainability practitioners. This study presents a weighting approach using ridge penalization-based regression to overcoming the consequence of the high correlation among the environmental aspects and hence providing accurate weighting values. The performance of the proposed approach is assessed using economic and environmental footprints of 20 food industries in the United States. The new weighting approach is expected to provide decision-makers with a quantitative management tool for monitoring and controlling core operational functions associated with the sustainable development and management.
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Eco-efficiency analysis can provide useful information for sustainability benchmarking of products and sectors while assessing and monitoring their economic and environmental performances. The eco-efficiency is defined as a ratio between economic performance and environmental impact. With multiple environmental and economic metrics, the eco-efficiency assessment is computationally complex. One common aspect of this complexity is associated with the importance (a.k.a. relative weights) of sustainability indicators in the presence of high multicollinearity. A novel weighting method integrating two well-established methods for reducing the multicollinearity consequence during the aggregation process is presented in the study. The proposed method's mathematical and operational procedures, called Weighted Penalized Maximum Likelihood Estimation (W-PMLE), are demonstrated for the eco-efficiency analysis of U.S food consumption. The eco-efficiency analysis results revealed that the CO2 emissions, the level of consumption of the metallic mineral, and water were the most critical to the eco-efficiency performance of U.S. consumption.
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A necessidade de opções suficientes para armazenamento de energia advém da evolução recente do sector electroprodutor e tendência veloz para a electrificação do sector automóvel. A solução tecnológica que hoje se afirma como a mais vantajosa envolve baterias recarregáveis de iões de lítio (LIB) com diferentes configurações, acopláveis em sistemas estacionários de armazenamento de energia e veículos eléctricos. Esta solução deverá prevalecer até 2050, competindo com outras alternativas ainda longe de massificação. O fabrico em larga escala de LIB altera drasticamente o padrão de repartição do consumo de lítio nos mercados que abastecem diferentes sectores industriais, exercendo forte pressão junto do limitado número de centros de mineração e transformação da matéria-prima natural no sentido de aumentarem rapidamente o seu ritmo de produção. Esta pressão tenderá a aumentar nos próximos anos a menos que, entretanto, seja possível incrementar de forma satisfatória as taxas de reciclagem das LIB e do lítio; actualmente, os valores das primeiras são insignificantes e menos de 1% do Li consumido é reciclado. As reservas globais conhecidas totalizam 15 Mt e estimativas conservadoras posicionam os recursos disponíveis em torno de 53 Mt, embora possam ascender a 62 Mt se boa parte dos recursos inferidos for confirmada. Mantendo-se as taxas de esgotamento anual dos recursos remanescentes registadas nos últimos 5 anos, os picos de exploração serão atingidos a breve trecho, comprometendo muitas das linhas de desenvolvimento tecnológico imaginadas para o futuro, em particular as que se relacionam com a mobilidade eléctrica. Deste modo, a “corrida ao lítio” tem vindo a ganhar expressão crescente, sustentando investimentos significativos em prospecção e pesquisa mineral para melhor caracterizar os recursos existentes e aumentar as reservas globais. Esta é também a razão que explica o recrudescimento dos trabalhos de prospecção em Portugal, um dos grandes produtores de concentrados minerais litiníferos, ocupando desde há muitos anos a 6ª ou 7ª posição do ranking mundial com uma produção média anual de 15800 toneladas entre 1980 e 2016, mas cujo potencial se encontra por avaliar em detalhe.
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Eco-efficiency composite indicators are widely accepted as the ratio of environmental impact to created economic value. These indicators are realistic measures for assessing sustainability performance considering the economy and environment. The weights reflect the importance of indicators to the aggregated environmental impacts. Estimating the relative weight of indicators is highly subjective, and therefore the search for a single unique weighting method has been going on for years. The regression-based weights are one of the most recent trends in sustainability modeling. Since these methods are designed initially to investigate the impact of multiple variables on a response variable rather than to estimate weights, some drawbacks are associated with their potential to provide proper weights. This paper presents a novel weighting approach integrating linear mixed-effect models with Johnson's relative weights to address these drawbacks and provide meaningful relative weights for eco-efficiency composite indicators. The proposed approach's operational and computational procedures are illustrated using a real example, and the eco-efficiency of food consumption of 38 countries is estimated for the period between 1990 and 2012 using a consumption-based sustainability accounting method. The findings have shown that energy use and GHG indicators are the most critical contributor to global food consumption's environmental impacts. The country-based eco-efficiency performance in this work has shown that China, India, and Russia are located in the low eco-efficiency score class. The Spatio-temporal analysis downgraded the geographical location's significance on the trends of eco-efficiency behavior in time and space. On the other hand, it revealed the different types of emerging hot spots over the world.
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Sustainability has been enshrined in the official claims of mega sporting events, and scholarly debates persist on how to achieve environmental stewardship and a prolonged legacy. Revitalizing the public transportation system with alternative fuel bus technologies has speculated significant environmental and socio-economic benefits to the host nation. This paper thus attempts to quantify and analyze the environmental, social, and economic impacts of alternative fuel buses throughout their entire life cycle stages to support the thought process of sustainable mobility practices in hosting mega-events. A hybrid, multi-regional Input-Output (MRIO) based life cycle sustainability assessment (LCSA) model is developed to assess three bus types: compressed natural gas (CNG), electric buses (EBs), and diesel buses (DBs). The results are investigated in terms of a combination of various manufacturing and end-of-life scenarios by encompassing impacts embedded in the global supply chains. A scenario-based analysis is then conducted to assess the impacts and associated benefits of EB compared to alternative bus technologies in host nations, during and post-event, taking the upcoming FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ as a case. The results for the MRIO analysis demonstrate the impacts embedded in the global supply chains and on-site benefits of adopting alternative fuel buses may compromise each other, as impacts might be shifted towards other countries (through manufacturing and end-of-life, in exporting countries) while minimizing the operation phase impacts in the importing country, Qatar. Even though the economic benefits of EBs are higher than the CNG buses, and with almost similar social benefits, the environmental impact of the CNG buses inside the host nation is much less than the DBs. This would thus make CNG buses a more balanced alternative than the DBs and EBs. The outcome of this research stays as an eye-opener to the local organizing committee of mega-events to rethink the current sough alternatives for the use of electric transit with more balanced alternatives as proposed in the study, to achieve the mandated carbon neutrality and environmental footprint mitigation goals.
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This study presents a combined application of hybrid life cycle sustainability assessment and multi-criteria decision-making, aiming to further advance an integrated sustainability assessment and decision-making for the selection of alternative-fuel taxis. First, a multiregional hybrid life cycle sustainability assessment model is built to evaluate macro-level sustainability impacts of various vehicle types: conventional gasoline vehicles, compressed natural gas vehicles, hybrid, and battery electric vehicles. Second, considering the subjective nature of the evaluation process, the interval-valued neutrosophic sets-based analytic hierarchy process is suggested to assess the results obtained from the life cycle model to determine the weight of each evaluation criterion. Then, the technique for order preference by similarity to the ideal solution is used to rank the sustainability performance. Two different charging scenarios are also tested. The results show that solar-powered BEVs are the best in the environmental impacts with the exceptions of water consumption and land use. Solar-powered BEVs are superior in human health impact, while, ICVs are the best in compensation and employment generations. The ranking results reveal that solar-powered BEVs are the best alternatives when all indicators are considered, followed by CNG vehicles. The proposed method provides a practical and life cycle-based decision-making approach to support and prioritize effective policies for more sustainable transportation.
Chapter
As seen in Chap. 2, a comprehensive evaluation and analysis of the environmental impacts of EVs and traction batteries is highly time intensive. An overarching programmatic approach to enable the fast and reliable life cycle-oriented tailoring and integration of interdisciplinary models is currently absent. To understand the potential of such an approach, it is essential to consult the approaches and technical developments recently documented within the research community. The aim of this chapter is, therefore, to review the contemporary research most relevant to the topic in question. The outline is as follows. First, the criteria to select and evaluate the approaches is presented. Then, the selected contributions are described and briefly analyzed. A comparative evaluation follows and, finally, the research gap is identified and described.
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Electric mobility is at the forefront of innovation. Cutting down greenhouse gases when low-carbon electricity sources are maintained has answered the concerns of skeptics when switching to electric mobility. This paper presents a life-cycle-based comparative study between the electric and conventional gasoline vehicles with respect to their environmental performance, taking the case of Qatar. A well-to-wheel life cycle assessment is used to understand the carbon footprint associated with the use of alternative mobility when powered by non-renewable energy sources such as natural gas for electricity production. A survey was also conducted to evaluate the economic and practical feasibility of the use of electric vehicles in Qatar. The analysis showed that electric vehicles (EVs) have passed conventional gasoline vehicles with a minimum difference between them of 12,000 gCO2eq/100 km traveled. This difference can roughly accommodate two additional subcom-pact electric vehicles on the roads of Qatar. Even though Qatar is producing all of its electricity from natural gas, EVs are still producing much less carbon footprint into the atmosphere with the results showing that almost identical alternatives produce triple the amount of GHG emissions. The results of the survey showed that, despite promising results shown in switching to carbon-neutral mobility solutions, a lack of willingness prevails within the State of Qatar to incline towards electric mobility among users. This implies that Qatar has to spend a lot of time and resources to achieve its ambitious goal to decarbonize mobility on roads with 10% electric vehicles by 2030. This research highlights the need for more practical incentives and generous subsidies by the government of Qatar on e-mobility solutions to switch the transportation system into an eco-friendly one.
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This paper examines the potential environmental impact of using electric vehicle batteries as storage in relation to an energy system as it moves towards the goal of net-zero emissions in 2050. The electrified transportation sector is an inevitable step towards a more sustainable energy system to meet climate change mitigation. Large-scale deployment of electric vehicles increases electricity demand whilst simultaneously presenting an opportunity to use electric vehicle batteries to shift peak demand through vehicle to grid, battery swapping, and reuse of retired vehicle batteries. The environmental consequence of using electric vehicle batteries as energy storage is analysed in the context of energy scenarios in 2050 in the United Kingdom. The results show that using an electric vehicle battery for energy storage through battery swapping can help decrease investigated environmental impacts; a further reduction can be achieved by using retired electric vehicle batteries. Using an electric vehicle battery for energy storage through a vehicle to grid mechanism has the potential to reduce environmental impacts if the impact of cycle degradation is minimal compared with calendar degradation. This balance is dependent upon the lithium-ion chemistry, temperature and mileage driven.
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Lithium-ion batteries (LIBs) are the ideal energy storage device for electric vehicles, and their environmental, economic, and resource risks assessment are urgent issues. Therefore, the life cycle assessment (LCA) of LIBs in the entire lifespan is becoming a hotspot. This study first reviews the basic framework and types, standards and methods, and technical challenges of LCA. Then, the cradle-to-cradle LCA framework for LIBs is constructed, and the technical route of LCA in the stages of battery production, usage, secondary utilization, and material recycling are analyzed in detail. Finally, the carbon footprint in the battery production and recycling stages is conducted under the current and future energy mixes. The results show that battery production significantly impacts the environment and resources, and battery materials recycling and remanufacturing present considerable environmental and economic values. Moreover, the greening of electricity is critical to reducing carbon emissions during the battery life cycle.
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The automobile sector is a promising avenue for enhancing energy security, economic opportunity, and air quality in India. Before penetrating a large number of electric vehicles (EV) into the power grid, a thorough investigation and assessment of significant parameters are required, as additional nonlinear and EV loads are linked to the decentralized market. Many automobile companies have already invested in electric vehicle research; hence, a detailed analysis on range anxiety and grid connectivity concerns are the important factors affecting the future of the electric vehicle industry. In this paper, the initial review is about the decentralized market in India and sustainable aspects of electric mobility based on the Indian context, as it is a developing nation with an enormous resource and scope for EV markets. With recent literature from the last three years, the substantial constraints observed in benefits and challenges are reviewed. The financial stability aspects and the incentives to overcome the barriers to EV adoption are briefly discussed. From the review, it has come to the limelight that infrastructure availability, technology, load demand, and consumer behaviour are all major obstacles in the electric vehicle ecosystem. For the overall design and study of the vehicle to grid (V2G) infrastructure, this paper also provides insight into the representation of electric vehicles in different energy-efficient models and their categorization while connecting to the grid. The methodology adopted for energy-efficient models includes lifecycle emissions, economy, smart charging, real-time optimization, aggregated EV resource modelling, and a support vector machine (SVM)-based method. This paper gives a positive impact on EV fleet integration and electric mobility in general, as it critically reviews the influential parameters and challenges. This classification depends on crucial parameters that are at the frontline of EV grid integration research. This review is a solution to enhance grid stability in regard to new EV models. With the advanced electric motors development and renewed battery technology models, longer-distance automobiles are now available on the market. This paper investigates the constraints of EV grid integration and analyzes different EV models to ease the grid stability for a decentralized market.
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Tracking the environmental impacts of production, use, and disposal of products (e.g., goods, and services) have been an important issue in the global economy. Although Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a widely applied method to track these environmental impacts and support policies, it has certain limitations and an isolated way of evaluating the environmental impacts with no consideration of social and economic impacts and mechanisms. To overcome the limits of current LCA, three mechanisms have been proposed in the literature: (1) broadening the indicators by including social and economic indicators in addition to the environmental impacts; (2) broadening the scope of analysis from product-level assessment to national and global levels; (3) deepening the assessment by inclusion of more mechanisms to account for interrelations among the system elements, uncertainty analysis, stakeholder involvement, etc. With these developments, LCA has been evolving into a new framework called Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA). Practical application of LCSA requires integration of various methods, tools, and disciplines. In this study, a comprehensive literature review is conducted to investigate recent developments, current challenges, and future perspectives in the LCSA literature. According to the review, a high number (40%) of LCSA studies are from the environmental science discipline, while contributions from other disciplines such as economics (3%) and social sciences (9%) are very low. On broadening the scope of analysis, 58% of the studies are product-level works, while 37% quantified the impacts at national level and achieved an economy-wide analysis, and only 5% of the studies were able to quantify the global impacts of products using LCSA framework. Furthermore, current applications of LCSA have not considered the rebound effects, feedback mechanisms, and interrelations of the system of interest sufficiently. To address these challenges, we present a complete discussion about the overarching role of systems thinking to bring tools, methods and disciplines together, and provide practical examples from the earlier studies that have employed various system-based methods. We discuss the importance of integrated system-based methods for advancement of LCSA framework in the following directions: (1) regional and global level LCSA models using multi-region input-output analysis that is capable of quantitatively capturing macro-level social, environmental, and economic impacts; (2) dealing with uncertainties in LCSA during multi-criteria decision-making process and expert judgments in weighting of LCSA indicators; and (3) integration of system dynamics modeling to reveal complex interconnections, dependencies, and causal relationships between sustainability indicators.
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In the context of the transformation toward a “green economy,” issues related to natural resource use have rapidly increased in importance in European and international policy debates. The large number of studies applying economy-wide material flow analysis so far mostly produced aggregated national indicators, making the results difficult to connect to policies, which are often designed for single sectors or consumption areas. This paper provides a detailed assessment of the composition of EU’s material footprint in its global context, aiming at identifying the main product groups contributing to overall material consumption and specifying the geographical sources for the raw materials required to satisfy EU’s final demand. Based on multi-regional input–output (MRIO) modeling, we apply production layer decomposition to assess supply chains and their structural changes from 1995 to 2011. The global MRIO database used in this study is EXIOBASE 3, which disaggregates 200 products and 163 industries, of which 33 represent material extraction sectors. By that means, we increase the level of detail to a degree where policies can more easily connect to. We find that the generally growing material footprint of the EU was characterized by a dramatic shift regarding the origin of raw materials, with the share of materials extracted within the EU territory falling from 68 % in 1995 to 35 % in 2011. In 2011, raw materials extracted in China to produce exports to the EU already contributed an equal share to EU’s material footprint as material extraction within the EU itself. Import dependency is most critical for the material group of metal ores, with only 13 % of all metals required as inputs to EU final demand stemming from within the EU. Regarding product composition, construction was confirmed as the most important sector contributing to the material footprint, followed by the group of manufacturing products based on biomass. Materials embodied in service sector activities together contributed a quarter to the total material footprint in 2011, making services an important, but currently disregarded area for European resource policies. We also find that supply chain structures became more complex over time, with a growing part located outside the EU territory.
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Purpose Quantitative life cycle sustainable assessment requires a complex and multidimensional understanding, which cannot be fully covered by the current portfolio of reductionist-oriented tools. Therefore, there is a dire need on a new generation of modeling tools and approaches that can quantitatively assess the economic, social, and environmental dimensions of sustainability in an integrated way. To this end, this research aims to present a practical and novel approach for (1) broadening the existing life cycle sustainability assessment (LCSA) framework by considering macrolevel environmental, economic, and social impacts (termed as the triple bottom line), simultaneously, (2) deepening the existing LCSA framework by capturing the complex dynamic relationships between social, environmental, and economic indicators through causal loop modeling, (3) understanding the dynamic complexity of transportation sustainability for the triple bottom line impacts of alternative vehicles, and finally (4) investigating the impacts of various vehicle-specific scenarios as a novel approach for selection of a macrolevel functional unit considering all of the complex interactions in the environmental, social, and economic aspects. Methods To alleviate these research objectives, we presented a novel methodology to quantify macrolevel social, economic, and environmental impacts of passenger vehicles from an integrated system analysis perspective. An integrated dynamic LCSA model is utilized to analyze the environmental, economic, and social life cycle impact as well as life cycle cost of alternative vehicles in the USA. System dynamics modeling is developed to simulate the US passenger transportation system and its interactions with economy, the environment, and society. Analysis covers manufacturing and operation phase impacts of internal combustion vehicles (ICVs), hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), and battery electric vehicles (BEVs). In total, seven macrolevel indicators are selected; global warming potential, particulate matter formation, photochemical oxidant formation, vehicle ownership cost, contribution to gross domestic product, employment generation, and human health impacts. Additionally, contribution of vehicle choices to global atmospheric temperature rise and public welfare is investigated. Results and discussion BEVs are found to be a better alternative for most of sustainability impact categories. While some of the benefits such as contribution to employment and GDP, CO2 emission reduction potential of BEVs become greater toward 2050, other sustainability indicators including vehicle ownership cost and human health impacts of BEVs are higher than the other vehicle types on 2010s and 2020s. While the impact shares of manufacturing and operation phases are similar in the early years of 2010s, the contribution of manufacturing phase becomes higher as the vehicle performances increase toward 2050. Analysis results revealed that the US transportation sector, alone, cannot reduce the rapidly increasing atmospheric temperature and the negative impacts of the global climate change, even though the entire fleet is replaced with BEVs. Reducing the atmospheric climate change requires much more ambitious targets and international collaborative efforts. The use of different vehicle types has a small impact on public welfare, which is a function of income, education, and life expectancy indexes. Conclusions The authors strongly recommend that the dynamic complex and mutual interactions between sustainability indicators should be considered for the future LCSA framework. This approach will be critical to deepen the existing LCSA framework and to go beyond the current LCSA understanding, which provide a snapshot analysis with an isolated view of all pillars of sustainability. Overall, this research is a first empirical study and an important attempt toward developing integrated and dynamic LCSA framework for sustainable transportation research.
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The strong economic growth in recent years has led to an intensive use of natural resources, which causes environmental stress as well as restrictions on the availability of resources. Therefore, a more efficient use of resources is necessary as an important contribution to sustainable development. The ESSENZ method presented in this article comprehensively assesses a product’s resource efficiency by going beyond existing approaches and considering the pollution of the environment as well as the physical and socio-economic availability of resources. This paper contains a short description of the ESSENZ methodology as well as a case study of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class (W 205)—comparing the conventional C 250 (petrol engine) with the C 350 e Plug-In Hybrid (electric motor and petrol engine). By applying the ESSENZ method it can be shown that the use of more and different materials for the Plug-In-Hybrid influences the dimensions physical and socio-economic availability significantly. However, for environmental impacts, especially climate change and summer smog, clear advantages of the C 350 e occur due to lower demand of fossil energy carriers. As shown within the case study, the when applying the ESSENZ method a comprehensive evaluation of the used materials and fossil energy carriers can be achieved.
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The concept of tracing the ecologically-based life cycle impacts of agricultural and food industries (AFIs) has become a topic of interest worldwide due to their critical association with the climate change,water and land footprint, and food security. In this study, an in-depth analysis of ecological resource consumption, atmospheric emissions, land and water footprints of 54 agricultural and food industries in the U.S. were examined extensively. Initially, the supply-chain linked ecological life cycle assessment was performed with Ecologically-based Life Cycle Assessment (Eco-LCA) tool. Then, the results of life cycle inventory were used to assess the mid and end-point impacts by using the ReCiPe approach.Thirdly, ecological performance assessment was performed using well-known metrics, including loading and renewability ratios and eco-efficiency analysis. As a novel comprehensive approach, the integrated framework that consists of the Eco-LCA, ReCiPe and linear programming-based ecological performance assessment is of importance to have an overall understanding about the extent of impacts related to agri-cultural and food production activities across the U.S. Results indicated that grain farming, dairy food,and animal production-related sectors were found to have the greatest shares in both environmental and ecological impact categories as well as endpoint impacts on human health, ecosystem and resources.In terms of climate change, animal (except poultry) slaughtering, rendering, and processing (ASRP), cattle ranching and farming (CRF), fertilizer manufacturing (FM), grain farming (GF), fluid milk and butter manufacturing (FMBM) were found to be the top five dominant industries in climate change impacts accounting for about 60% share of the total impact.
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The European Union (EU) has proposed in its Resource-efficiency roadmap a ‘dashboard of indicators’ consisting of four headline indicators for carbon, water, land and materials. The EU recognizes the need to use a consumption-based (or ‘footprint’) perspective to capture the global dimension of resources and their impacts. In this paper, we analyse how the EU’s footprints compare to those of other nations, to what extent the EU and other major economies of the world rely on embodied resource imports, and what the implications are for policy making based on this comparison. This study is the first comprehensive multi-indicator comparison of all four policy relevant indicators, and uses a single consistent global Multi-Regional Input Output (MRIO) database with a unique and high level of product detail across countries. We find that Europe is the only region in the world that relies on net embodied imports for all indicators considered. We further find that the powerful economies of China and others in the Asia-Pacific already dominate global resource consumption from a footprint perspective, while they still haven’t reached the prosperity of developed countries. Competition for resources is hence likely to increase, making Europe even more vulnerable. A hot spot analysis suggests that final consumption of food, transport and housing are priorities for reduction efforts along the life cycle. Further, countries with a similar Human Development Index can have very different footprints, pointing at societal organisation at macro-level as option for improvement. This points at options for countries for lowering their footprint, becoming less dependent on embodied imports, while maintaining a high quality of life.
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Intuitionistic Fuzzy Set theory can be used in conjunction with environmentally extended input-output based life cycle assessment (EE-IO-LCA) models to help decision makers address the inherent vagueness and uncertainties in certain sustainable energy planning problems. In this regard, the EE-IO-LCA model can be combined with an intuitionistic fuzzy set theory for a multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) application with a set of environmental and socio-economic indicators. To achieve this goal, this study proposes the use of the Technique for Order of Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution method to select the best wind energy alternative for a double layer MCDM problem, which requires expert judgments to simultaneously apply appropriate weighting to each life cycle phase and sustainability indicator to be considered. The novelty of this research is to propose a generic 9-step fuzzy MCDM method to solve sustainable energy decision-making problems using a combination of three different techniques: (1) an intuitionistic fuzzy entropy method to identify the individual importance of phases and criteria; (2) an IFWGA operator to establish a sub-decision matrix with the weights applied to all relevant attributes; and (2) an IFWAA operator to build a super-decision matrix with the weights applied to all of the life-cycle phases considered. This proposed method is then applied as a case study for sustainable energy planning, specifically for the selection of V80 and V90 onshore and offshore wind turbines to be installed in the United States. It is strongly believed that this methodology will provide a vital guidance for LCA practitioners in the future for selecting the best possible energy alternative under an uncertain decision-making scenario.
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Effective implementation of resource policies requires consistent and robust indicators. An increasing number of national and international strategies focussing on resource efficiency as a means for reaching a “green economy” call for such indicators. As supply chains of goods and services are increasingly organised on the global level, comprehensive indica-tors taking into account upstream material flows associated with internationally traded products need to be compiled. Particularly in the last few years, the development of con-sumption-based indicators of material use – also termed “material footprints” – has made considerable progress. This paper presents a comprehensive review of existing methodol-ogies to calculate material footprint-type indicators. The three prevailing approaches, i.e. environmentally extended input-output analysis (EE-IOA), coefficient approaches based on process analysis data, and hybrid approaches combing elements of EE-IOA and process analysis are presented, existing models using the different approaches discussed, and advantages and disadvantages of each approach identified. We argue that there is still a strong need for improvement of the specific approaches as well as comparability of re-sults, in order to reduce uncertainties. The paper concludes with recommendations for further development covering methodological, data and institutional aspects.
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The uncertainty in the results of inputeoutput-based life cycle assessment models makes the sustainability performance assessment and ranking a challenging task. Therefore, introducing a new approach, fuzzy data envelopment analysis, is critical; since such a method could make it possible to integrate the uncertainty in the results of the life cycle assessment models into the decision-making for sustainability benchmarking and ranking. In this paper, a fuzzy data envelopment analysis model was coupled with an inputeoutput-based life cycle assessment approach to perform the sustainability performance assessment of the 33 food manufacturing sectors in the United States. Seven environmental impact categories were considered the inputs and the total production amounts were identified as the output category, where each food manufacturing sector was considered a decision-making unit. To apply the proposed approach, the life cycle assessment results were formulated as fuzzy crisp valued-intervals and integrated with fuzzy data envelopment analysis model, thus, sustainability performance indices were quantified. Results indicated that majority (31 out of 33) of the food manufacturing sectors were not found to be efficient, where the overall sustainability performance scores ranged between 0.21 and 1.00 (efficient), and the average sustainability performance was found to be 0.66. To validate the current study's findings, a comparative analysis with the results of a previous work was also performed. The major contribution of the proposed framework is that the effects of uncertainty associated with input eoutput-based life cycle assessment approaches can be successfully tackled with the proposed Fuzzy DEA framework which can have a great area of application in research and business organizations that use with eco-efficiency as a sustainability performance metric.
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This research involves two novel elements to advance the body of knowledge in existing sustainability assessment frameworks for alternative vehicle technologies. First, we developed an input–output based hybrid life cycle sustainability assessment model using several macro-level social, economic, and environmental indicators, taking into consideration the manufacturing of vehicles and batteries, operation, and end-of-life phases. Second, the results of a hybrid life cycle sustainability assessment for different conventional and alternative vehicles technologies (internal combustion electric vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles, plug-in-hybrid electric vehicles, and battery electric vehicles) are incorporated into the Technique for Order-Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution and Intuitionistic Fuzzy Sets. Two policy scenarios are considered in this analysis, with Scenario 1 being based on existing electric power infrastructure in the U.S. with no additional infrastructure requirements, while Scenario 2 is an extreme scenario in which the electricity to power electric vehicles is generated exclusively via solar charging stations. The Intuitionistic Fuzzy Multi-Criteria Decision Making and Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution methods are then utilized to rank the life cycle sustainability performance of alternative passenger vehicles. Furthermore, since expert judgments play an important role in determining the relative performance of alternative vehicle technologies, a sustainability triangle analysis is also presented to show how the weighting applied to each dimension affects the selection of different alternatives. The results indicate that hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are the best alternatives for both Scenarios 1 and 2 when all of the indicators are considered. On the other hand, the ranking of vehicles changes significantly when each of the environmental, economic, and social indicators are evaluated individually. This proposed method can be a useful decision making platform for decision-makers to develop more effective policies and guide the offering of incentives to the right domains for sustainable transportation.
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Consumption-based material footprints calculated with multi-regional input–output (mrIO) analysis are influenced by the sectoral, spatial and material aggregations used in the mrIO tables, and lack of disaggregation can be a source of uncertainty. This study investigated the effect of the resolution of mrIO databases on consumption-based material footprints. The effect of aggregation was investigated by constructing input–output tables with different spatial, product and material category resolutions and comparing the calculated material footprints. Our results indicate that the material footprints of countries calculated using the different spatial and product aggregations are in general in the order of a few percent, with outliers in the order of 25% difference. The use of IO models with a low product category resolution (e.g. 60 product categories) to calculate the embodied material use of individual products will likely result in inaccurate estimations of the total embodied material for some product categories. Aggregating the original 46 material categories into 16 categories changes the calculated material footprint of countries by about 30%. This result strongly suggests that the material data used to create the extensions for the IO framework should be collected at the highest resolution that is practically feasible.
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Material flow-based indicators play an important role in measuring green and resource-efficient growth. This article examines the global flows of materials and the amounts of materials directly and indirectly necessary to satisfy domestic final demand in different countries world-wide. We calculate the indicator Raw Material Consumption (RMC), also referred to as material footprint (MF), by applying a global, multiregional input-output model based on the Global Trade Analysis Project (GTAP) database and extended by material extraction data. We examine world-wide patterns of material extraction and materials embodied in trade and consumption, investigating changes between 1997 and 2007. We find that flows of materials related to international trade have increased by almost 60% between 1997 and 2007. We show that the differences in MFs per capita are huge, ranging from up to 100 tonnes in the rich, oil-exporting countries to values as low as 1.5 to 2.0 tonnes in some developing countries. We also quantify the differences between the indicators Domestic Material Consumption (DMC) and RMC, illustrating that net material exporters generally have a DMC larger than RMC, whereas the reverse is observed for net importers. Finally, we confirm the fact that most countries with stable or declining DMCs actually show increasing RMCs, indicating the occurrence of leakage effects, which are not fully captured by DMC. This challenges the world-wide use of DMC as a headline indicator for national material consumption and calls for the consideration of upstream material requirements of international trade flows.
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This paper presents a physical input-output table (PIOT) that shows the complete wood and paper flow through the economic system of Germany. The PIOT illustrates the wood and paper flow between different sectors and to different types of final use. It can be used both as a monitoring instrument and for scenario analysis. The hypothetical extraction method is applied in order to assess inter-industry linkages and single out key industries. Despite the wide variety of wood-based products and the versatile use of wood, it turns out that there is a surprisingly linear organization of the production system when it comes to the flow of wood and paper through Germany (“throughput economy”).
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Purpose With the increasing concerns related to integration of social and economic dimensions of the sustainability into life cycle assessment (LCA), traditional LCA approach has been transformed into a new concept, which is called as life cycle sustainability assessment (LCSA). This study aims to contribute the existing LCSA framework by integrating several social and economic indicators to demonstrate the usefulness of input–output modeling on quantifying sustainability impacts. Additionally, inclusion of all indirect supply chain-related impacts provides an economy-wide analysis and a macro-level LCSA. Current research also aims to identify and outline economic, social, and environmental impacts, termed as triple bottom line (TBL), of the US residential and commercial buildings encompassing building construction, operation, and disposal phases. Methods To achieve this goal, TBL economic input–output based hybrid LCA model is utilized for assessing building sustainability of the US residential and commercial buildings. Residential buildings include single and multi-family structures, while medical buildings, hospitals, special care buildings, office buildings, including financial buildings, multi-merchandise shopping, beverage and food establishments, warehouses, and other commercial structures are classified as commercial buildings according to the US Department of Commerce. In this analysis, 16 macro-level sustainability assessment indicators were chosen and divided into three main categories, namely environmental, social, and economic indicators. Results and discussion Analysis results revealed that construction phase, electricity use, and commuting played a crucial role in much of the sustainability impact categories. The electricity use was the most dominant component of the environmental impacts with more than 50 % of greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption through all life cycle stages of the US buildings. In addition, construction phase has the largest share in income category with 60 % of the total income generated through residential building’s life cycle. Residential buildings have higher shares in all of the sustainability impact categories due to their relatively higher economic activity and different supply chain characteristics. Conclusions This paper is an important attempt toward integrating the TBL perspective into LCSA framework. Policymakers can benefit from such approach and quantify macro-level environmental, economic, and social impacts of their policy implications simultaneously. Another important outcome of this study is that focusing only environmental impacts may misguide decision-makers and compromise social and economic benefits while trying to reduce environmental impacts. Hence, instead of focusing on environmental impacts only, this study filled the gap about analyzing sustainability impacts of buildings from a holistic perspective.
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Following the debate on the implications of international trade for global climate policy, this paper introduces the topic of the economic benefits from trade obtained by exporting countries in relation to the emissions generated in the production of exports. In 2008, 24% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and 20% of the employment around the world were linked to international trade. China “exported” 30% of emissions and hosted 37.5% of the jobs generated by trade worldwide. The European Union and the United States of America were the destination of 25% and 18.4% of the GHG emissions embodied in trade. The imports of these two regions contributed to the creation of 45% of the employment generated by international trade. This paper proposes the idea of including trade issues in international climate negotiations, taking into account not only the environmental burden generated by developed countries when displacing emissions to developing countries through their imports, but also the economic benefits of developing countries producing the goods exported to developed countries.
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The mass of material consumed by a population has become a useful proxy for measuring environmental pressure. The "raw material equivalent" (RME) metric of material consumption addresses the issue of including the full supply chain (including imports) when calculating national or product level material impacts. The RME calculation suffers from data availability; however, as quantitative data on production practices along the full supply chain (in different regions) is required. Hence RME is currently being estimated by three main approaches 1) assuming domestic technology in foreign economies 2) utilizing of region-specific life-cycle inventories (in a hybrid framework); 3) utilizing multi-regional input-output (MRIO) analysis to explicitly cover all regions of the supply chain. Whilst the first approach has been shown to give in-accurate results, this paper focuses on the benefits and costs of the latter two approaches. We analyze results from two key (MRIO and hybrid) projects modeling raw material equivalents, adjusting the models in a stepwise manner in order to quantify the effects of individual conceptual elements. We attempt to isolate the MRIO effect, which denotes the quantitative impact of calculating RME of imports by an MRIO approach instead of the hybrid model, focusing on the RME of EU external trade imports. Whilst, the models give quantitatively similar results, differences become more pronounced when tracking more detailed material flows. We assess the advantages and disadvantages of the two approaches, and look forward to ways to further harmonize data and approaches.