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Environmental assessment of waste to energy processes specifically incineration and anaerobic digestion using life cycle assessment

Environmental assessment of waste to energy processes specifically incineration and anaerobic digestion using life cycle assessment
Environmental assessment of waste to energy processes specifically incineration and anaerobic digestion using life cycle assessment
Municipal solid waste is an issue every community in the world has to be concerned with. Without any management, municipal solid waste poses environmental and health risks to the community such as from water and air pollution. In selecting methods to deal with the waste, environmental impacts considerations are important to reduce these risks. Environmentally sustainable waste management processes should also decrease greenhouse gases contributing to global warming and climate change. Waste to energy (WtE) processes lessens and replaces the use of fossil fuels reducing greenhouse gases. The research aims to assess the environmental impacts and energy recovery of WtE processes, specifically incineration or energy recovery facilities (ERF) and anaerobic digestion (AD) to select suitable options or any combinations thereof as part of an integrated waste management system for different locations and conditions by using life cycle assessment (LCA) methods. WRATE (Waste and Resources Assessment Tool for the Environment) an LCA model is used to assess scenarios designed systematically with different combinations of incineration/ERF and AD. The study also varies other factors such as different recycling schemes and recycling rate, household waste composition and population density to determine the suitable combinations for different local conditions. Results for both UK and Thailand confirm the need to reduce disposal of waste into landfills. The scenario with Incineration/ERF for heat recovery and a post collection recycling scheme and the combination scenario with Incineration/ERF for heat recovery and Anaerobic Digestion for vehicle fuel a post collection recycling scheme lead the ranking for most energy recovery and less environmental impacts. The parameter exerting the greatest influence on LCIA of these set of scenarios is WtE technology. Second is recycling scheme with recycling rate as a subset. Third is energy recovery type. Population density also affects the outcome slightly by the magnitude of the values.
Tawatsin, Anuda
f758100e-0bf9-4e65-8636-1b163b667dd7
Tawatsin, Anuda
f758100e-0bf9-4e65-8636-1b163b667dd7
Heaven, Sonia
f25f74b6-97bd-4a18-b33b-a63084718571

Tawatsin, Anuda (2014) Environmental assessment of waste to energy processes specifically incineration and anaerobic digestion using life cycle assessment. University of Southampton, Engineering and the Environment, Doctoral Thesis, 423pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Municipal solid waste is an issue every community in the world has to be concerned with. Without any management, municipal solid waste poses environmental and health risks to the community such as from water and air pollution. In selecting methods to deal with the waste, environmental impacts considerations are important to reduce these risks. Environmentally sustainable waste management processes should also decrease greenhouse gases contributing to global warming and climate change. Waste to energy (WtE) processes lessens and replaces the use of fossil fuels reducing greenhouse gases. The research aims to assess the environmental impacts and energy recovery of WtE processes, specifically incineration or energy recovery facilities (ERF) and anaerobic digestion (AD) to select suitable options or any combinations thereof as part of an integrated waste management system for different locations and conditions by using life cycle assessment (LCA) methods. WRATE (Waste and Resources Assessment Tool for the Environment) an LCA model is used to assess scenarios designed systematically with different combinations of incineration/ERF and AD. The study also varies other factors such as different recycling schemes and recycling rate, household waste composition and population density to determine the suitable combinations for different local conditions. Results for both UK and Thailand confirm the need to reduce disposal of waste into landfills. The scenario with Incineration/ERF for heat recovery and a post collection recycling scheme and the combination scenario with Incineration/ERF for heat recovery and Anaerobic Digestion for vehicle fuel a post collection recycling scheme lead the ranking for most energy recovery and less environmental impacts. The parameter exerting the greatest influence on LCIA of these set of scenarios is WtE technology. Second is recycling scheme with recycling rate as a subset. Third is energy recovery type. Population density also affects the outcome slightly by the magnitude of the values.

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More information

Published date: March 2014
Organisations: University of Southampton, Water & Environmental Engineering Group

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 366530
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/366530
PURE UUID: f90d9aa2-532e-424c-8ef6-0ce51b8b4dda
ORCID for Sonia Heaven: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7798-4683

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 15 Oct 2014 12:25
Last modified: 17 Mar 2020 01:25

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