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  • 1. Buss, Wolfram
    et al.
    Jansson, Stina
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Mašek, Ondřej
    Unexplored potential of novel biochar-ash composites for use as organo-mineral fertilizers2019In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 208, p. 960-967Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Application of wood ash on forest and agricultural soils can provide nutrients and increase soil pH, however, it changes the soil chemistry rapidly and temporarily, often resulting in reduced plant growth and potassium leaching. Biochar from woody materials are nutrient poor and need nutrient enhancement prior to soil application. In this study, spruce residues were mixed with spruce/pine ash in different ratios (0–50%) to produce biochar-ash composites at 450 °C. The biochar yield (ash-free basis) increased by 80–90% with the addition of 50% ash due to catalytic biochar formation. Consequently, nearly half the amount of wood is needed to produce the same amount of (ash-free) biochar. Mineral release was moderated in the composites compared to pure ash, demonstrated by a lower electric conductivity and % available K content (a factor of 2.5–4.4 lower than in wood ash). Furthermore, the % available chromium content, which is a key potentially toxic element in wood ash, decreased by a factor of 50–160. Soil application of biochar-ash composites decreases the risk of Cr toxicity, salinity stress and leaching of K in soil substantially compared to ash application. Biochar-ash composites are a novel product with vast unexplored potential for use in forestry and agriculture.

  • 2.
    Heikkurinen, Pasi
    et al.
    MTT Agrifood Research Finland; Aalto Univ, Sch Business Org & Management, Espoo, Finland.
    Bonnedahl, Karl Johan
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Corporate responsibility for sustainable development: A review and conceptual comparison of market- and stakeholder-oriented strategies2013In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 43, p. 191-198Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper reviews and compares two mainstream business theories, namely market and stakeholder orientations, as contending strategies of corporate responsibility for sustainable development. We argue that even though stakeholder orientation offers a broader inclusion of values and expectations than market orientation , they share considerable similarities in terms of sustainability assumptions and how the role of the corporation becomes perceived in the quest for sustainable development. Both strategies leave responsibility outside the firm by emphasising the role of either customers or stakeholders as the basis of strategizing. Both strategies are also based on assumptions consistent with weak sustainability (at best), which is argued to be insufficient in order to achieve sustainability over time and space. Therefore, this article suggests that a new orientation is needed if corporations are to contribute to sustainable development, namely sustainable development orientation. We call for further research in outlining a business strategy that admits corporations’ responsibility for sustainable development and departs from the strong sustainability assumption.

  • 3.
    Helin, Sven
    et al.
    Örebro University School of Business, Örebro University, Sweden.
    Babri, Maira
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Travelling with a Code of Ethics: A Contextual Study of a Swedish MNC Auditing a Chinese Supplier2015In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 107, p. 41-53Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Corporate codes of ethics are integrated into supplier-auditing processes in the hope of ensuring sustainability throughout the supply chain. But little is known about what actually happens when one standardized code of ethics is disseminated and applied in audits on suppliers across the globe. This study builds on the literature on the ‘translation of management ideas’ and examines what happens when a corporate code of ethics travels in a global context. The specific case reports on a Swedish Multinational Corporation (MNC) with a standardized code of ethics applied in the practice of auditing a supplier in Eastern China. The study shows that the code can be translated in different ways in different organizational and geographical contexts. Observations of and interviews about how the code is translated in practice indicate that the code's ethics are negotiable. It is argued that sustainability and ethics are in danger of being negotiated or completely undermined when efficiency and contractual agreements set the agenda for audits, and that the relative buyer–supplier power relation can play a vital role in setting standards and demanding supplier compliance.

  • 4.
    Hervé, Corvellec
    et al.
    Department of Service Studies, Lund University, Sweden.
    Stål, Herman
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Evidencing the waste effect of Product-Service Systems (PSSs)2017In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 145, p. 14-24Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper adopts a waste-centric analysis of Product-Service Systems (PSSs) to demonstrate that they do not automatically contribute to a dematerialization of the economy, a decoupling of production from material and energy consumption, and thus a transition toward sustainability. A qualitative analysis of various Nordic fashion PSSs that uses a combination of Tukker’s (2004) classification of PSSs and the European waste hierarchy model demonstrates that the waste effect of a PSS is independent of its being product-oriented, use-oriented, or result-oriented. Rather, the effect depends on how the business model of the PSS organizes material flows at production, distribution, use, and post-consumption stages in relationship to prevailing waste regimes where the PSS operates.We suggest that if a PSS is to reduce its waste effect and contribute to dematerialization, its business model should design material flows that fit with the prevailing waste regimes within the area it operates and prioritize waste prevention before considering reuse, recycling, energy recovery, and landfilling.

  • 5.
    Jansson, Johan
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration. Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography, Transportation Research Unit (TRUM). School of Economics and Management, Lund University, Lund, Sweden.
    Nordlund, Annika
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography, Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Westin, Kerstin
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography, Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Examining drivers of sustainable consumption: the influence of norms and opinion leadership on electric vehicle adoption in Sweden2017In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 154, p. 176-187Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Transportation accounts for a large and growing part of carbon dioxide emissions. With an increasing vehicle fleet worldwide private car use is becoming an acute problem in need of urgent attention and action. Policy interference and cleaner cars are not enough; alternative fuel vehicles such as electric vehicles need to be adopted by consumers as well. Previous research on pro-environmental consumer behavior and sustainable consumption has proven the importance of norms and pro-environmental attitudes. However, little research has focused on understanding interpersonal influence found influential in consumer behavior research relating to innovation adoption. Consumer opinion leading and opinion seeking are two such interpersonal influence attitudinal constructs that have not been empirically analyzed in relation to sustainable consumption and alternative fuel vehicles. The main aim of this study is thus to analyze the influence of a set of attitudinal constructs on electric and flexfuel vehicle adoption: personal norms, social norms, ecological attitudes, opinion leading, and opinion seeking. Data from a questionnaire survey on three groups of electric vehicle adopters and non-adopters is used (N=1,192). The results confirm the importance of personal norms, opinion leading and opinion seeking in the three groups also when controlling for socio-demographic factors. The main contribution of this study is that it shows the importance of both interpersonal influence and attitudinal factors as drivers for eco-innovation adoption. The study also contributes in showing that electric vehicle and flexfuel vehicle adopters differ in relation to non-adopters on several factors.

  • 6. Kocík, Jaroslav
    et al.
    Samikannu, Ajaikumar
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Bourajoini, Hasna
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Pham, Tung Ngoc
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Mikkola, Jyri-Pekka
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry. Faculty of Science and Engineering, Industrial Chemistry & Reaction Engineering, Johan Gadolin Process Chemistry Centre, Åbo Akademi University, Åbo-Turku, Finland.
    Hájek, Martin
    Čapek, Libor
    Screening of active solid catalysts for esterification of tall oil fatty acids with methanol2017In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 155, no 1, p. 34-38Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The paper is focused on the description of the activity/selectivity of mesoporous silica based materials loaded with various types of active species in the esterification of tall oil free fatty acids. The metals such as aluminium, molybdenum, gallium and zinc, including their combinations were impregnated on the mesoporous silica, which was tested in esterification reaction. All these catalysts preserved its tall oil free fatty conversion in the first and the second catalytic cycles. However, while only insignificant amount of gallium or molybdenum was lost from the solid catalyst into the liquid phases, zinc leached from every studied solid catalyst. In contrast to impregnated gallium on mesoporous silica, which exhibited higher acidity and higher tall oil free fatty acids conversion in the first catalytic cycle, but its value was not preserved in the second catalytic test.

  • 7.
    Manzhynski, Siarhei
    et al.
    Belarussian State Technological University.
    Figge, Frank
    Kedge Business School.
    Hassel, Lars G.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE).
    Sustainable value creation of nine countries of the Baltic region: value, changes and drivers2015In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 108, p. 637-646Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Baltic region comprises countries of great diversity. They have in common that they all face the challenge to combine a sound economic development with the stewardship for their environmental, social and economic resources. Using the Sustainable Value approach we first analyse their overall sustainability performance. We then further develop the value drivers of Sustainable Value to enhance the explanatory power of our analysis. We find that there are significant differences between countries. We show both conceptually and using our examples that there is no unambiguous link between economic growth, environmental and social stewardship and the efficient use of resources.

  • 8. Reckien, Diana
    et al.
    Salvia, Monica
    Heidrich, Oliver
    Church, Jon Marco
    Pietrapertosa, Filomena
    De Gregorio-Hurtado, Sonia
    D'Alonzo, Valentina
    Foley, Aoife
    Simoes, Sofia G.
    Lorencova, Eliska Krkoska
    Orru, Hans
    Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Faculty of Medicine, University of Tartu, Ravila 19, 51007 Tartu, Estonia.
    Orru, Kati
    Wejs, Anja
    Flacke, Johannes
    Olazabal, Marta
    Geneletti, Davide
    Feliu, Efren
    Vasilie, Sergiu
    Nador, Cristiana
    Krook-Riekkola, Anna
    Matosovic, Marko
    Fokaides, Paris A.
    Ioannou, Byron I.
    Flamos, Alexandros
    Spyridaki, Niki-Artemis
    Balzan, Mario V.
    Fulop, Orsolya
    Paspaldzhiev, Ivan
    Grafakos, Stelios
    Dawson, Richard
    How are cities planning to respond to climate change?: Assessment of local climate plans from 885 cities in the EU-282018In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 191, p. 207-219Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Paris Agreement aims to limit global mean temperature rise this century to well below 2 degrees C above pre-industrial levels. This target has wide-ranging implications for Europe and its cities, which are the source of substantial greenhouse gas emissions. This paper reports the state of local planning for climate change by collecting and analysing information about local climate mitigation and adaptation plans across 885 urban areas of the EU-28. A typology and framework for analysis was developed that classifies local climate plans in terms of their alignment with spatial (local, national and international) and other climate related policies. Out of eight types of local climate plans identified in total we document three types of stand-alone local climate plans classified as type Al (autonomously produced plans), A2 (plans produced to comply with national regulations) or A3 (plans developed for international climate networks). There is wide variation among countries in the prevalence of local climate plans, with generally more plans developed by central and northern European cities. Approximately 66% of EU cities have a type Al, A2, or A3 mitigation plan, 26% an adaptation plan, and 17% a joint adaptation and mitigation plan, while about 33% lack any form of stand-alone local climate plan (i.e. what we classify as Al, A2, A3 plans). Mitigation plans are more numerous than adaptation plans, but planning for mitigation does not always precede planning for adaptation. Our analysis reveals that city size, national legislation, and international networks can influence the development of local climate plans. We found that size does matter as about 80% of the cities with above 500,000 inhabitants have a comprehensive and stand-alone mitigation and/or an adaptation plan (Al). Cities in four countries with national climate legislation (A2), i.e. Denmark, France, Slovakia and the United Kingdom, are nearly twice as likely to produce local mitigation plans, and five times more likely to produce local adaptation plans, compared to cities in countries without such legislation. Al and A2 mitigation plans are particularly numerous in Denmark, Poland, Germany, and Finland: while Al and A2 adaptation plans are prevalent in Denmark, Finland, UK and France. The integration of adaptation and mitigation is country-specific and can mainly be observed in two countries where local climate plans are compulsory, i.e. France and the UK. Finally, local climate plans produced for international climate networks (A3) are mostly found in the many countries where autonomous (type Al) plans are less common. This is the most comprehensive analysis of local climate planning to date. The findings are of international importance as they will inform and support decision making towards climate planning and policy development at national, EU and global level being based on the most comprehensive and up-to-date knowledge of local climate planning available to date. 

  • 9.
    Røyne, Frida
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry. SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, Department of Energy Technology, Eklandagatan 86, SE-412 61 Gothenburg, Sweden.
    Berlin, Johanna
    Ringström, Emma
    Life cycle perspective in environmental strategy development on the industry cluster level: a case study of five chemical companies2015In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 86, p. 125-131Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The scale of industry clusters and their significant environmental impact make addressing environmental strategies on the cluster level an intriguing task. Although several studies indicate that upstream processes contribute significantly to the total environmental impact of the system, few studies assess how environmental strategy development can be approached from a life cycle perspective. The aim of this paper was to investigate the practical significance of life cycle-based environmental strategy development using a chemical industry cluster in Sweden as the case study. To assess the environmental impact, a cradle-to-gate life cycle assessment (LCA) was chosen as the method, with the total annual production of the cluster in 2011 as the functional unit. To cover the whole value chain, the global warming potential for downstream processes was also estimated. The findings were linked to the cluster vision, which aims to reduce environmental impact by 2030. The results indicate that the cluster must focus on the whole value chain when pursuing the aim of producing sustainable products as environmental impact both upstream and downstream of the cluster accounts for a larger share than on-site processes. The assessment also enables distribution of environmental impact among incoming material streams, thus providing the cluster with decision support when introducing renewable and recycled materials. Additionally, the assessment supports strategy comparison and serves as a base case against which strategy opportunities can be evaluated. This study demonstrates that the life cycle approach has interesting potential to support industry cluster companies in their mutual effort to improve environmental performance.

  • 10.
    Røyne, Frida
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry. SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, Department of Energy and Bioeconomy, Eklandagatan 86, SE-412 61 Gothenburg, Sweden.
    Penaloza, Diego
    Sandin, Gustav
    Berlin, Johanna
    Svanström, Magdalena
    Climate impact assessment in life cycle assessments of forest products: implications of method choice for results and decision making2016In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 116, p. 90-99Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    As life cycle assessments are often conducted to provide decision support, it is important that impact assessment methodology is consistent with the intended decision context. The currently most used climate impact assessment metric, the global warming potential, and how it is applied in life cycle assessments, has for example been criticised for insufficiently accounting for carbon sequestration, carbon stored in long-lived products and timing of emission. The aim of this study is to evaluate how practitioners assess the climate impact of forest products and the implications of method choice for results and decision-making. To identify current common practices, we reviewed climate impact assessment practices in 101 life cycle assessments of forest products. We then applied identified common practices in case studies comparing the climate impact of a forest-based and a non-forest-based fuel and building, respectively, and compared the outcomes with outcomes of applying alternative, non-established practices. Results indicate that current common practices exclude most of the dynamic features of carbon uptake and storage as well as the climate impact from indirect land use change, aerosols and changed albedo. The case studies demonstrate that the inclusion of such aspects could influence results considerably, both positively and negatively. Ignoring aspects could thus have important implications for the decision support. The product life cycle stages with greatest climate impact reduction potential might not be identified, product comparisons might favour the less preferable product and policy instruments might support the development and use of inefficient climate impact reduction strategies.

  • 11. Sandin, Gustav
    et al.
    Røyne, Frida
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry. SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, Brinellgatan 4, Box 857, SE-50105 Borås, Sweden.
    Berlin, Johanna
    Peters, Greg M.
    Svanström, Magdalena
    Allocation in LCAs of biorefinery products: implications for results and decision-making2015In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 93, p. 213-221Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract In Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs) of biorefinery products, a common challenge is the choice of method for allocating environmental burdens of multifunctional processes (feedstock cultivation and biorefinery processes), a choice which can substantially influence LCA results and hence decision-making. The aim of this paper is to explore how this choice influences results and in which decision contexts the choice is particularly important. To do this, we tested six allocation methods in a case study of a biorefinery using pulpwood as feedstock. Tested methods included: main product bears all burden, substitution, traditional partitioning methods (based on economic value and exergy), a hybrid method combining elements of substitution and partitioning, and an alternative hybrid method developed by us, which allocates less environmental burden to co-products with a high potential to mitigate environmental burdens. The methods were tested in relation to decision contexts and LCA questions of relevance for biorefineries. The results indicate that the choice of allocation method deserves careful attention, particularly in consequential studies and in studies focussed on co-products representing relatively small flows. Furthermore, the alternative hybrid allocation method is based on a logical rationale – favouring products with higher substitution potential – and has some other potential benefits. However, in cases where the scales of co-product flows are of different orders of magnitude, the method yields extreme results that could be difficult to interpret. Results also show that it can be important with consistent allocation for both cultivation and biorefinery processes, particularly when substitution is applied.

  • 12.
    Stål, Herman
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Inertia and change related to sustainability: an institutional approach2015In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 99, p. 354-365Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Despite increased awareness of environmental crisis and social inequity the world is becoming more, not less, unsustainable. Obviously there is great inertia, a disinclination to enact change, in for instance environmentally detrimental practices. While there is much in the literature to explain inertia at the individual, organizational and societal level, there is a gap concerning approaches that focus upon the industrial level. This paper addresses this gap by developing an analytical approach based upon insti- tutional theory brought together with the ontological principles of strong sustainability. Two interrelated case studies, concerning greenhouse gas reduction in the Swedish agrifield, are used to develop the approach. The empirical results show that greenhouse gas reduction is used in support for convergent changes within the industry, for instance to motivate increased efficiency and yields. Hence, the paper contributes to the sustainable development-literature by providing an analytical approach that can be utilized to increase the understanding of change processes at the industrial level. This approach is then discussed and further developed to accommodate for the case results.

  • 13.
    Stål, Herman
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Hervé, Corvellec
    Lunds Universitet.
    A decoupling perspective on circular business model implementation: illustrations from Swedish apparel2018In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 171, p. 630-643Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Drawing on the concept of decoupling, from institutional theory in organizational studies, this paperexplains how organizations mitigate demands for circularity. Seven Swedish apparel companies thathave started collecting used clothes as a form of engagement with circular business models serve as casestudies. The paper shows how outsourcing and internal separation allow these companies to buffer theirbusiness model and core way of creating value from emerging demands. It also shows how companiespro-actively work at influencing institutional demands for circularity by making these demandscompatible with their own interests. The concept of decoupling thereby provides key insights into thedevelopment and implementation, or absence thereof, of circular business models.

  • 14.
    Stål, Herman I.
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Bonnedahl, Karl J.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Eriksson, Jessica
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
    Micro-level translation of greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction – policy meets industry in the Swedish agricultural sector2015In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 103, p. 629-639Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is an urgent challenge for mankind. However, as aggregate emissions continue to rise, necessary changes in industrial practices are lagging behind. The article addresses this discrepancy by exploring how the issue of GHG reduction is channeled from policy to industry, in one of the more GHG intensive sectors, agriculture. We adopt the translation perspective to analyze and discuss how the climate issue travels between contexts. Our study explores the activities involved as advisors, functioning as translating agents within Swedish agri-policy, inform producers about the issue of GHG reduction. The study sheds new light on the effectiveness of mitigation policy in promoting practice change and illustrates how translation is an analytical framework suitable for studying this within different industries.

  • 15. Söderholm, Kristina
    et al.
    Bergquist, Ann-Kristin
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.
    Söderholm, Patrik
    The transition to chlorine free pulp revisited: Nordic heterogeneity in environmental regulation and R&D collaboration2017In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 165, p. 1328-1339Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The purpose of this paper is to analyze the development paths leading to the transition to cleaner bleaching technologies in the pulp industry. It devotes particular attention to the key features of the Swedish transition, but also compares this to the Finnish experiences. The empirical investigation builds on an analytical framework highlighting the conditions under which pollution regulations can provide efficient incentives for deep emission reductions at industrial plants. Existing and new archive material, including not least comprehensive license trial acts for Swedish pulp mills over an extended time period, are studied. Based on this historical analysis our findings contradict previous literature, the latter emphasizing that pressures from consumers and the public were the most significant driving forces behind the adoption ofeand innovation inealternative bleaching technologies during the late 1980s. Instead, this paper asserts, the green pulp transition was characterized by regulation-induced technological change and was made possible by long history of industry-wide cooperation in environmental R&D. Furthermore, while previous research has emphasized the leading role of the Nordic countries in green pulp innovation, we identify a number of profound differences between Finland and Sweden. These emerge from various national contexts in terms of, for instance, industry structures and strategies, political cultures, and regulatory styles. Finally, at a more general level the paper provides a few policy implications for supporting the ongoing transition towards a forest-based bioeconomy.

  • 16.
    Upadhyayula, Venkata K.K.
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Parvatker, Abhijeet G.
    Baroth, Anju
    Shanmugam, Kavitha
    Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry.
    Lightweighting and electrification strategies for improving environmental performante of passenger cars in India by 2030: A critical perspective based on life cycle assessment2019In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 209, p. 1604-1613Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Indian automotive industry is faced with an unenviable challenge of achieving a sustainable growth in one of the largest markets. Adapting to increasingly strict environmental norms by the government committed to reducing the national greenhouse gas emissions, growing concerns amongst the citizens over the deteriorating air quality in the cities are the major environmental sustainability challenges for the auto industry in next decade. In this study, we analyze the potential benefits of vehicle light weighting and introduction of electric vehicles through a cradle-to-grave life cycle assessment (LCA) of a standard sedan passenger vehicle. Based on the LCA results, five different scenarios are envisioned with different composition of the passenger vehicle fleet in 2030. These scenarios are used to analyze three key enviro-economical goals for India; (1) dependency on crude oil imports, (2) GHG emission reduction targets and (3) improvement in urban air quality. The results indicate that global warming potential (GWP) and fossil depletion impacts of ICEs can be reduced by 17%, while metal depletion reduces by 34% per vehicle with lightweighting. However, increase in freshwater ecotoxicity impact by 57% is one of the trade-offs. The GWP of a compact BEV powered with current (2014) and 2030 electricity grid mixes is 36% and 16% higher than petrol car. The GWP of a sub-compact BEV powered with current grid mix is 9% higher with current grid mix but 14% lower than petrol cars when powered with 2030 electricity grid mix. Crude oil consumption and GHG emissions are reduced by 20% with lightweight ICE fleet. Whereas, up to 45% reduction in crude oil consumption and 65% improvement in urban air quality can be achieved with BEV penetration scenarios. (C) 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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