Yearly archive: 2019

Rebound effect – beyond conventional wisdom

October 22, 2019 by David Font Vivanco

Resource efficiency has traditionally been a key pillar of energy and broader environmental policy. This is why more efficient cars, lighting, and irrigation systems, to name a few, have been widely endorsed by both private and public management. Yet this pervasive efficiency narrative is now being challenged by the so-called rebound effect. So what is this rebound effect and how does it affect everyday choices? Let’s assume a case where Mike and Penny want to replace their old car with…

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Social valuation – Questions and answers

September 9, 2019 by Bo Weidema

I recently responded to a questionnaire from Copper8 on “social valuation” and thought that some of the answers might be of general interest, so I share them here: 1. What is your definition of social valuation? We normally speak of social assessment, where assessment is the full study including human activities, their interaction, the externalities and their cause-effect chains (as in ‘Life cycle sustainability assessment’), while valuation is only the last step in the impact assessment where the relative severity…

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Press release on certified palm oil

August 20, 2019 by Jannick Schmidt

Today we have sent out a brief press release on the findings from the Palm Oil Club project which has resulted in a detailed life cycle assessment (LCA) study of palm oil production. The study compares the environmental impact of RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) certified sustainable palm oil with non-certified palm oil in Indonesia and Malaysia. See the press release here: Certification of palm oil

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Global inventory modelling of wastewater discharges

July 24, 2019 by Ivan Muñoz

In May this year we proudly presented the third version of our wastewater inventory model, WW LCI, at SETAC Europe’s 29th Annual Meeting in Helsinki, Finland (see the presentation). This constitutes the 5th consecutive platform presentation about WW LCI in a SETAC conference, which is a good sign of the scientific interest that our model has received so far from the LCA community. We take this milestone as an opportunity to look back at the story behind our model. The…

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Counter-intuitive LCA results

June 27, 2019 by Bo Weidema

Bio-based plastics with larger effect on global warming than their fossil derived counterparts? Certified forest products that unintendedly are more harmful to biodiversity than the corresponding products from plantation forestry? No environmental effect of demanding recycled paper? All these are examples of LCA results that are not immediately intuitive. Does that mean that they are wrong? Not necessarily. We are often met by a demand that our results should be immediately understandable and make intuitive sense. And there is no…

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Improving dairy products for a carbon-net-zero future

March 13, 2019 by Randi Dalgaard

Yesterday marked the release of a new strategy from Arla Foods launching their targets to accelerate the transition to sustainable dairy production. The new strategy has an increased focus on the farms and we are pleased to see how our climate tool has now been applied to 5000 individual farms. The tool calculates climate footprints for the milk from each farm and thus demonstrates to the farmer where the CO2 emissions originate. The numbers are a motivation in themselves, and…

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