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Life cycle assessment methodology for agriculture: some considerations for best practices

Code: 9781838798680
Seyyed Hassan Pishgar-Komleh, Institute of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation, Poland and Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, Czech Republic; Paria Sefeedpari, Institute of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation, Poland; Nathan Pelletier, University of British Columbia, Canada; and Miguel Brandão, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden

Chapter synopsis: Life cycle assessment (LCA), a method that originates from the manufacturing industry, is increasingly applied to agricultural systems as a more holistic perspective and approach with respect to managing agricultural product life cycles. However, the practice of applying LCA to agricultural systems is far from being standardized. Key methodological issues remain unresolved, resulting in a plethora of ways in which LCA is applied in practice that sometimes provides conflicting results. This chapter discusses issues associated with LCA including delimitation of systems boundaries, defining the functional unit, handling co-production, and the choosing of impact assessment methods. This chapter addresses the methodology of agricultural LCA, supported by detailed case studies. Finally, the chapter looks ahead to future research trends in this area.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2018.0044.01
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Identifying a functional unit 3 Unit processes as the building blocks of LCI 4 Categories of environmental pressures and impacts 5 Conclusion and future trends 6 Abbreviations 7 Where to look for further information 8 References
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