Development of a method for adapting international LCI data for Brazilian building products

Abstract:

Purpose: there is an increasing demand for environmental evaluations of construction products and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is considered a suitable method. However, there is still no Brazilian life cycle inventory (LCI) database. Adapting existing LCI data is a strategy adopted by many LCA practitioners to overcome this difficulty. The aim of this work is to present the LCI adaptation methodology developed by the authors, applying it in a case study of structural concrete blocks. Methods: Ecoinvent was chosen as the reference database. Primary data were collected in site visits to characterize the production flow for structural concrete blocks in the state of São Paulo, Brazil, considering a cradle-to-gate analysis. Ecoinvent parameters were compared to the Brazilian production process, in order to determine the extent of LCI adaptation. Results and discussion: macro indicators such as energy mix and diesel type were altered in the concrete block production flow and upstream processes. Several modifications were performed in a detailed level, mainly water for curing, electricity consumption of block machines and raw materials proportion. Infrastructure items were not taken into account. Conclusions: adapting existing data was considered viable, important and can be a starting point for developing local databases.


Reference:

SILVA, Fernanda Belizario; ARDUIN, Rachel Horta; BECERE, Osmar Hamilton; CASTRO, Alessandra Lorenzetti de; TEIXEIRA, Cláudia Echevenguá; OLIVEIRA, Luciana Alves de. Developemnt of a method for adapting international LCI data for Brazilian building products. In: INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT, 6., CILCA, 2015, Lima, Peru. Anais… 7 p.

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