Though many studies concern the agro-food sector in the EU and Italy, and its environmental impacts,literature is quite lacking in works regarding LCA application on citrus products. This paper representsone of the first studies on the environmental impacts of citrus products in order to suggest feasiblestrategies and actions to improve their environmental performance. In particular, it is part of a researchaimed to estimate environmental burdens associated with the production of the following citrus-basedproducts: essential oil, natural juice and concentrated juice from oranges and lemons. The life cycleassessment of these products, published in a previous paper, had highlighted significant environmentalissues in terms of energy consumption, associated CO2 emissions, and water consumption. Starting fromsuch results the authors carry out an improvement analysis of the assessed production system, wherebysustainable scenarios for saving water and energy are proposed to reduce environmental burdens of theexamined production system. In addition, a sensitivity analysis to estimate the effects of the chosenmethods will be performed, giving data on the outcome of the study. Uncertainty related to allocationmethods, secondary data sources, and initial assumptions on cultivation, transport modes, and wastemanagement is analysed. The results of the performed analyses allow stating that every assessed ecoprofileis differently influenced by the uncertainty study. Different assumptions on initial data andmethods showed very sensible variations in the energy and environmental performances of the finalproducts. Besides, the results show energy and environmental benefits that clearly state the improvementof the products eco-profile, by reusing purified water use for irrigation, using the railway mode forthe delivery of final products, when possible, and adopting efficient technologies, as the mechanicalvapour recompression, in the pasteurisation and concentration of juice.

Life Cycle Assessment of Italian citrus based products. Sensitivity analysis and improvement scenarios

MISTRETTA, Marina
2010

Abstract

Though many studies concern the agro-food sector in the EU and Italy, and its environmental impacts,literature is quite lacking in works regarding LCA application on citrus products. This paper representsone of the first studies on the environmental impacts of citrus products in order to suggest feasiblestrategies and actions to improve their environmental performance. In particular, it is part of a researchaimed to estimate environmental burdens associated with the production of the following citrus-basedproducts: essential oil, natural juice and concentrated juice from oranges and lemons. The life cycleassessment of these products, published in a previous paper, had highlighted significant environmentalissues in terms of energy consumption, associated CO2 emissions, and water consumption. Starting fromsuch results the authors carry out an improvement analysis of the assessed production system, wherebysustainable scenarios for saving water and energy are proposed to reduce environmental burdens of theexamined production system. In addition, a sensitivity analysis to estimate the effects of the chosenmethods will be performed, giving data on the outcome of the study. Uncertainty related to allocationmethods, secondary data sources, and initial assumptions on cultivation, transport modes, and wastemanagement is analysed. The results of the performed analyses allow stating that every assessed ecoprofileis differently influenced by the uncertainty study. Different assumptions on initial data andmethods showed very sensible variations in the energy and environmental performances of the finalproducts. Besides, the results show energy and environmental benefits that clearly state the improvementof the products eco-profile, by reusing purified water use for irrigation, using the railway mode forthe delivery of final products, when possible, and adopting efficient technologies, as the mechanicalvapour recompression, in the pasteurisation and concentration of juice.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12318/2609
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