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[GreenYes] Re: Informed solid waste management

At 04:15 PM 9/26/2006 -0500, Stephan Pollard <stephan.pollard@no.address> wrote:
>Few would argue that most of us want to do the
>"right thing." Similarly, few would argue that
>fully informed decisions are anything less than
>optimal. However, many decisions involving
>solid waste management are made that are not
>fully informed. The suggestion has been made by
>Barlaz et al., (2003a) that the public is not
>always able to separate that which sounds
>appealing from true resource recovery. It has
>become clear that while there are often positive
>externalities (benefits) to our "do-good"
>actions there are also negative externalities
>(costs) associated with our actions. These
>unaccounted for external costs imply that our
>activities are inefficient. In this
>circumstance society's net welfare is not
>maximized and is therefore suboptimal.

Naa. I don't buy this. It sounds
oh-so-reasonable above but read down and see where it really goes.

Barlaz, Vasuki, etc, are incineration
promoters. When the DSWA (Vasuki) brought them
to Delaware a few months ago as part of a scheme
to promote another burner, they wouldn't provide
the inputs to their "LCA" model. For years, he
has brought in people to argue that we should
shut down (or not start up) recycling programs
and go for the burn. But we know that garbage
incineration is bad news for a whole host of reasons.

This sort of pseudo-rational approach is easily
used to manipulate people in favor of particular
interests, just as, say, elections are easily
used to manipulate rather than empower communities.

We need to stay focused, as Rick Anthony points
out, on developing effective resource management
programs. An increasing proportion of the recent
posts on this list have been about burning or
cooking garbage. This is not a helpful trend
from my point of view. "Integrated waste
management" is not the answer. "zero waste" is the answer.

Alan Muller
Green Delaware

>On September 22, 2006 I sent an email to the
>GreenYes listserv (Is MSW recycling the best
>policy?) soliciting commentary on the following
>assertions by Lave et al. (1999). First, "the
>goal of MSW recycling (presumably that of the
>US) should not be to increase MSW recycling but
>rather to increase environmental quality and the
>sustainability of the economy." Second, "from a
>review of the existing economic experience with
>recycling and an analysis of the environmental
>benefits (including estimation of external
>social costs)... for most communities, curbside
>recycling is only justifiable for some
>postconsumer waste, such as aluminum and other
>metals." Third, "curbside recycling of
>postconsumer metals can save money and improve
>environmental quality if the collection,
>sorting, and recovery processes are
>efficient." Finally, "curbside collection of
>glass and paper is unlikely to help the
>environment and sustainability save in special
>circumstances." What is suggested by Lave et
>al. (1999) is that the diversion of materials in
>a recycling program that increase the cost of
>waste management is not appropriate when the
>added cost of the diversion, including
>environmental discharges, resources, and energy,
>are more than those associated with the
>extraction, transportation, and manufacture of
>virgin materials. Consideration of cost,
>environmental discharges, resources, energy, and
>other externalities (both positive and negative)
>should occur when evaluating any waste management alternative.
>There are tools available that quantify the
>relative benefits of the various alternatives of
>solid waste that indicate the
>appropriateness of integrated solid waste
>management. LCA is an analytical tool that
>examines the often complex environmental impact
>of a product, process, or service. Information
>returned from LCAs can be used as an important
>input to informed solid waste
>decision-making...decision-making that should
>incorporate periodic reassessment. Such
>reassement includes, for example, measurement of
>the efficacy of diversion programs at the
>material/commodity level. Depending on
>ever-changing circumstances, halting the
>diversion of glass bottles and jars in favor of
>spending the saved money on programs targeting
>the diversion or perhaps elimination of
>high-risk products might be an indicated course
>of action. Given the more than appreciable
>expense of curbside collection of recyclables, a
>dollar spent on the collection of glass, paper,
>or PET might be better spent elsewhere, perhaps
>on drop-off or deposit programs or take-back
>schemes as has been suggested (Lave et al.,
>1999; Barlaz et al., 2003a). As Barlaz et al.
>(2003a) point out, saving gasoline has a lot
>more potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions than does PET recycling.
>Any informed waste diversion program would not
>be complete without a review of the literature
>focused on LCA in resource and solid waste
>management including that which discusses the
>limitations of its use. A couple of excellent
>places to get started are EIONET's Web site
>and the US EPA's Web page on Life-Cycle
>Assessment Research
>I've put together a partial list of references
>focusing on life-cycle assessment (LCA) of solid
>waste management. If anyone has other
>references to add I'd like to know about
>them. It is important to note that failure to
>consider that the rarely-static mix of
>techniques/parameters/inputs differ between
>locations could result in suboptimal or
>worse-than-before solutions when applying LCA
>results in a cookie-cutter
>fashion. Additionally, not all LCAs are created
>equal. Some are more accurate and(or) thorough
>in their consideration of input parameters and
>externalities than others. Quantifying tangible
>and intangible social benefits and costs can be
>very difficult. Concerning the input data and
>the quality of the LCA, the old adage (and
>pardon the pun) "Garbage In Garbage Out" certainly applies.
>Barlaz, M.A, Cekander, G.C., Vasuki, N.C.,
>2003a. Integrated solid waste management in the
>United States. Journal of Environmental Engineering 129(7): 583-584.
>Barlaz, M.A., Kaplan, P.O., Ranjithan, S.R.,
>2003. Using life-cycle analysis to compare solid
>waste management alternatives involving
>recycling, composting and landfills. MSW Management 13(3): 42-43.
>Barlaz, M.A., Kaplan, P.O., Ranjithan, S.R.,
>Rynk, R., 2003. Evaluating environmental impacts
>of solid waste management alternatives. BioCycle 44(10): 52-56.
>Camobreco, V., Ham, R., Barlaz, M., Repa, E.,
>Felker, M., Rousseau, C., Rathle, J., 1999.
>Life-Cycle inventory of a modern municipal solid
>waste landfill. Waste Management and Research 17(6): 394-408.
>The Environmental Research and Education
>Foundation (EREF), in conjunction with
>Ecobalance and researchers from the University
>of Wisconsin and North Carolina State, is
>nearing completion of a comprehensive 2-year
>project on the life-cycle inventory (LCI) of a
>modern municipal solid waste (MSW)
>landfill. Data for the model came from both
>primary (over 100 landfills world-wide) and
>secondary data sources. Partners in the project
>included waste management companies from North
>America and Europe (including Waste Management
>Inc., SITA and CREED). In addition to the
>landfill LCI model, the project also includes
>the development of a software tool. The final
>report will provide a sound basis for assessing,
>on a life-cycle basis, the emissions and
>resource consumption associated with a modern
>MSW landfill. The model and report can be used
>to assess the importance of: (1) the various
>stages in the life cycle system; (2) the time
>horizon selected; and (3) the air and water management techniques selected.
>Denison, R.A., 1996. Environmental life-cycle
>comparisons recycling, landfilling, and
>incineration: A review of recent research.
>Annual Review of Energy and the Environment 21(1): 191-237.
>This paper reviews and analyzes the major recent
>North American studies that have compared on an
>environmental basis the major options used to
>manage the materials that comprise municipal
>solid waste (MSW). The reviewed studies provide
>quantitative comparative information on one or
>more of the following environmental parameters:
>solidwaste output, energy use, and releases of
>pollutants to the air and water. The review
>finds that all of the studies support the
>following conclusions: Systems based on recycled
>production plus recycling offer substantial
>system-wide or "life-cycle" environmental
>advantages over systems based on virgin
>production plus either incineration or
>landfilling, across all four parameters
>examined. Only when the material recovery or
>waste management activities are analyzed in
>isolation? (which does not account for the
>system-wide consequences of choosing one system
>option over another?) do the virgin
>material?-based systems appear to offer
>advantages over recycled production plus recycling.
>Eriksson, O., Carlsson-Reich, M., Frostell, B.,
>Bjorklund, A., Assefa, G., Sundqvist, J.-.
>Granath, J., Baky, A., Thyselius, L., 2005.
>Municipal solid waste management from a systems
>perspective. Journal of Cleaner Production 13(3): 241-252.
>Different waste treatment options for municipal
>solid waste have been studied in a systems
>analysis. Different combinations of
>incineration, materials recycling of separated
>plastic and cardboard containers, and biological
>treatment (anaerobic digestion and composting)
>of biodegradable waste, were studied and
>compared to landfilling. The evaluation covered
>use of energy resources, environmental impact
>and financial and environmental costs. In the
>study, a calculation model (Orware) based on
>methodology from life cycle assessment (LCA) was
>used. Case studies were performed in three
>Swedish municipalities: Uppsala, Stockholm, and
>Älvdalen. The study shows that reduced
>landfilling in favour of increased recycling of
>energy and materials lead to lower environmental
>impact, lower consumption of energy resources,
>and lower economic costs. Landfilling of
>energy-rich waste should be avoided as far as
>possible, partly because of the negative
>environmental impacts from landfilling, but
>mainly because of the low recovery of resources
>when landfilling. Differences between materials
>recycling, nutrient recycling and incineration
>are small but in general recycling of plastic is
>somewhat better than incineration and biological
>treatment somewhat worse. When planning waste
>management, it is important to know that the
>choice of waste treatment method affects
>processes outside the waste management system,
>such as generation of district heating,
>electricity, vehicle fuel, plastic, cardboard, and fertiliser.
>Harrison, K.W., Dumas, R.D., Nishtala, S.R.,
>Barlaz, M.A., 2000. A life-cycle inventory of
>municipal solid waste combustion. Journal of the
>Air and Waste Management Association 50(6): 993-1003.
>Evaluation of alternative strategies for
>municipal solid waste (MSW) management requires
>models to calculate environmental emissions as a
>function of both waste quantity and
>composition. A methodology to calculate waste
>component-specific emissions associated with MSW
>combustion is presented here. The methodology
>considers emissions at a combustion facility as
>well as those avoided at an electrical energy
>facility because of energy recovered from waste
>combustion. Emission factors, in units of kg
>pollutant per metric ton MSW entering the
>combustion facility are calculated for
>CO2-biomass, CO2-fossil, SOx, HCI, NOx,
>dioxins/furans, PM, CO, and 11 metals. Water
>emissions associated with electrical energy
>offsets are also considered. Reductions in
>environmental emissions for a
>500-metric-ton-per-day combustion facility that recovers energy are calculated.
>Harrison, K.W., Dumas, R.D., Solano, E., Barlaz,
>M.A., Brill, D.E., Ranjithan, S.R., 2001.
>Decision support tool for life-cycle-based solid
>waste management. Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering 15(1): 44-58.
>Existing solid waste management (SWM) planning
>software provides only limited assistance to
>decision makers struggling to find strategies
>that address their multifarious concerns. The
>combinatorial nature (many waste items and many
>management options) and multiple objectives of
>the SWM problem severely constrain the
>effectiveness of a manual search process using
>these tools. Recognizing this, researchers have
>proposed several optimization-based search
>procedures. These methods, however, enjoy
>limited use due to the substantial expertise
>required for their application. This paper
>presents a new computer-based decision support
>framework that addresses these limitations. The
>new framework integrates process models that
>quantify the lifecycle inventory of a range of
>pollutants and costs for an extensive municipal
>solid waste system, an optimization search
>procedure that identifies strategies that meet
>cost and environmental objectives and
>site-specific restrictions, and a user-friendly
>interface that facilitates utilization of these
>components by practitioners. After describing
>the software design, the use and value of the
>tool in typical waste management scenarios is
>demonstrated through a hypothetical, but
>realistic, case study in which several
>alternative SWM strategies are generated and examined.
>Kaplan, P.O., Solano, E., Dumas, R.D., Harrison,
>K.W., Ranjithan, S.R., Barlaz, M.A., Brill,
>E.D., 2003. Life-cycle-based solid waste
>management. Second International Conference of
>the International Society for Industrial
>Ecology, June 29-July 2, 2003, Ann Arbor, MI.
>The development of integrated solid waste
>management (ISWM) strategies that are efficient
>with respect to both cost and environmental
>performance is a complex task. There are
>numerous interrelations among the different unit
>operations in the solid waste system; e.g.,
>collection, recycling, combustion, disposal, and
>large numbers of design parameters that affect
>estimates of cost and environmental
>emissions. The objective of this study was to
>develop and demonstrate an ISWM model to assist
>in the identification of alternative SWM
>strategies that meet cost, energy, and
>environmental emissions objectives. The modeled
>system includes over 40 unit processes for
>collection, transfer, separation, treatment
>(e.g., combustion, composting), and disposal of
>waste as well as remanufacturing facilities for
>processing recycled material. Waste composition
>and generation rates are defined for three types
>of sectors: single family, multifamily and
>commercial. The mass flow of each item through
>all possible combinations of unit processes is
>represented in a linear programming model using
>a unique modeling approach. Cost, energy
>consumption and environmental emissions
>associated with waste processing at each unit
>process are computed in a set of specially
>implemented unit process models. A life-cycle
>approach is used to compute energy consumption
>and emissions of numerous pollutants, including
>CO, fossil- and biomass-derived CO2, NOx, SOx,
>particulate matter, and CH4. The model is
>flexible to allow representation of
>site-specific issues, including recycling and
>composting targets, mass flow restrictions, and
>targets for the values of cost, energy and each
>emission. The model was applied in a
>hypothetical case study. Several SWM scenarios
>were studied, including the variation in energy
>and environmental emissions among alternate SWM
>strategies; the effect of mandated waste
>diversion (through recycling and other
>beneficial uses of waste such as combustion to
>recover energy) on environmental releases and
>cost; the tradeoff between cost and the level of
>waste diversion; and the tradeoff between cost
>and greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, the
>flexibility of the model is illustrated by the
>identification of alternate SWM strategies that
>meet approximately the same objectives using
>distinctly different combinations of unit
>processes. Use of the model illustrates the
>potential impact of solid waste management
>policies and regulations on global environmental
>emissions. Recently, the model was extended to
>enable consideration of uncertainty in input
>parameters. Monte Carlo simulation with Latin
>Hypercube Sampling was integrated within the
>ISWM model to estimate the uncertainty in cost
>and emissions for a specific SWM strategy. For
>each realization, the cost and LCI coefficients
>are computed. These are then combined with the
>mass flows of waste items corresponding to an
>SWM strategy to estimate its cost and
>emissions. After repeating this procedure for
>all realizations, the resultant cost and
>emissions values are used to form output
>cumulative distribution functions. The extended
>capability of the ISWM decision support tool
>Komilis, D.P., Ham, R.K., 2004. Life-Cycle
>inventory of municipal solid waste and yard
>waste windrow composting in the United States.
>Journal of Environmental Engineering 130(11): 1390-1400.
>This paper presents a life-cycle inventory (LCI)
>for solid waste composting. Three LCIs were
>developed for two typical municipal solid waste
>(MSW) composting facilities (MSWCFs) and one
>typical yard waste (YW) composting facility
>(YWCF). Municipal solid waste was assumed to
>comprise three organic components, food wastes,
>yard wastes, and mixed paper, as well as various
>inorganic components. Total costs, combined
>precombustion, and combustion energy
>requirements and 29 selected material flows
>(also referred to as LCI coefficients) were
>calculated by accounting for both the processes
>involved in originally producing, refining and
>transporting a material used in the facility as
>well as consumption during normal facility
>operation. Total costs ranged from $15/ t to
>$50/ t and energy requirements from 29 kw h/ t
>to 167 kw h/ t for a YWCF and a high quality MSW
>composting facility, respectively. More than
>90% of the overall CO2 emissions in all
>facilities were due to the biological
>decomposition of the organic substrate, while
>the rest was due to fossil fuel combustion.
>Lave, L.B., Hendrickson, C.T., Conway-Schempf,
>N.M., McMichael, F.C., 1999. Municipal solid
>waste recycling issues. Journal of Environmental Engineering 125(10): 944-949.
>Municipal solid waste (MSW) recycling targets
>have been set nationally and in many states.
>Unfortunately, the definitions of recycling,
>rates of recycling, and the appropriate
>components of MSW vary. MSW recycling has been
>found to be costly for most municipalities
>compared to landfill disposal. MSW recycling
>policy should be determined by the cost to the
>community and to society more generally. In
>particular, recycling is a good policy only if
>environmental impacts and the resources used to
>collect, sort, and recycle a material are less
>than the environmental impacts and resources
>needed to provide equivalent virgin material
>plus the resources needed to dispose of the
>postconsumer material safely. From a review of
>the existing economic experience with recycling
>and an analysis of the environmental benefits
>(including estimation of external social costs),
>we find that, for most communities, curbside
>recycling is only justifiable for some
>postconsumer waste, such as aluminum and other
>metals. We argue that alternatives to curbside
>recycling collection should be explored,
>including product takeback for products with a
>toxic content (such as batteries) or product
>redesign to permit more effective product remanufacture.
>Morris, J., 2005. Comparative LCAs for Curbside
>Recycling Versus Either Landfilling or
>Incineration with Energy Recovery. International
>Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 10(4): 273-284.
>This article describes two projects conducted
>recently by Sound Resource Management (SRMG) -
>one for the San Luis Obispo County Integrated
>Waste Management Authority (SLO IWMA) and the
>other for the Washington State Department of
>Ecology (WA Ecology). For both projects we used
>life cycle assessment (LCA) techniques to
>evaluate the environmental burdens associated
>with collection and management of municipal
>solid waste. Both projects compared
>environmental burdens from curbside collection
>for recycling, processing, and market shipment
>of recyclable materials picked up from
>households and/or businesses against
>environmental burdens from curbside collection
>and disposal of mixed solid waste.
>The SLO IWMA project compared curbside recycling
>for households and businesses against curbside
>collection of mixed refuse for deposition in a
>landfill where landfill gas is collected and
>used for energy generation. The WA Ecology
>project compared residential curbside recycling
>in three regions of Washington State against the
>collection and deposition of those same
>materials in landfills where landfill gas is
>collected and flared. In the fourth Washington
>region (the urban east encompassing Spokane) the
>WA Ecology project compared curbside recycling
>against collection and deposition in a wasteto-
>energy (WTE) combustion facility used to
>generate electricity for sale on the regional
>energy grid. During the time period covered by
>the SLO study, households and businesses used
>either one or two containers, depending on the
>collection company, to separate and set out
>materials for recycling in San Luis Obispo
>County. During the time of the WA study
>households used either two or three containers
>for the residential curbside recycling programs
>surveyed for that study. Typically participants
>in collection programs requiring separation of
>materials into more than one container used one
>of the containers to separate at least glass
>bottles and jars from other recyclable
>materials. For the WA Ecology project SRMG used
>life cycle inventory (LCI) techniques to
>estimate atmospheric emissions of ten
>pollutants, waterborne emissions of seventeen
>pollutants, and emissions of industrial solid
>waste, as well as total energy consumption,
>associated with curbside recycling and disposal
>methods for managing municipal solid waste.
>Emissions estimates came from the Decision
>Support Tool (DST) developed for assessing the
>cost and environmental burdens of integrated
>solid waste management strategies by North
>Carolina State University (NCSU) in conjunction
>with Research Triangle Institute (RTI) and the
>US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA)1.
>RTI used the DST to estimate environmental
>emissions during the life cycle of products. RTI
>provided those estimates to SRMG for analysis in
>the WA Ecology project2. For the SLO IWMA
>project SRMG also used LCI techniques and data
>from the Municipal Solid Waste Life- Cycle
>Database (Database), prepared by RTI with the
>support of US EPA during DST model development,
>to estimate environmental emissions from solid
>waste management practices3. Once we developed
>the LCI data for each project, SRMG then
>prepared a life cycle environmental impacts
>assessment of the environmental burdens
>associated with these emissions using the
>Environmental Problems approach discussed in the
>methodology section of this article. Finally,
>for the WA study we also developed estimates of
>the economic costs of certain environmental
>impacts in order to assess whether recycling was
>cost effective from a societal point of view.
>Recycling of newspaper, cardboard, mixed paper,
>glass bottles and jars, aluminum cans,
>tin-plated steel cans, plastic bottles, and
>other conventionally recoverable materials found
>in household and business municipal solid wastes
>consumes less energy and imposes lower
>environmental burdens than disposal of solid
>waste materials via landfilling or incineration,
>even after accounting for energy that may be
>recovered from waste materials at either type
>disposal facility. This result holds for a
>variety of environmental impacts, including
>global warming, acidification, eutrophication,
>disability adjusted life year (DALY) losses from
>emission of criteria air pollutants, human
>toxicity and ecological toxicity. The basic
>reason for this conclusion is that energy
>conservation and pollution prevention engendered
>by using recycled rather than virgin materials
>as feedstocks for manufacturing new products
>tends to be an order of magnitude greater than
>the additional energy and environmental burdens
>imposed by curbside collection trucks, recycled
>material processing facilities, and
>transportation of processed recyclables to
>end-use markets. Furthermore, the energy grid
>offsets and associated reductions in
>environmental burdens yielded by generation of
>energy from landfill gas or from waste
>combustion are substantially smaller then the
>upstream energy and pollution offsets attained
>by manufacturing products with processed
>recyclables, even after accounting for energy
>usage and pollutant emissions during collection,
>processing and transportation to end-use markets
>for recycled materials. The analysis that leads
>to this conclusion included a direct comparison
>of the collection for recycling versus
>collection for disposal of the same quantity and
>composition of materials handled through
>existing curbside recycling programs in
>Washington State. This comparison provides a
>better approximation to marginal energy usage
>and environmental burdens of recycling versus
>disposal for recyclable materials in solid waste
>than does a comparison of the energy and
>environmental impacts of recycling versus
>management methods for handling typical mixed
>refuse, where that refuse includes organics and
>non-recyclables in addition to whatever
>recyclable materials may remain in the
>garbage. Finally, the analysis also suggests
>that, under reasonable assumptions regarding the
>economic cost of impacts from pollutant
>emissions, the societal benefits of recycling outweigh its costs.
>Solano, E., Ranjithan, S.R., Barlaz, M.A.,
>Brill, E.D., 2002. Life-cycle based solid waste
>management I: Model development. Journal of
>Environmental Engineering 128(10): 981-992.
>This paper describes an integrated solid waste
>management ~ISWM! model to assist in identifying
>alternative SWM strategies that meet cost,
>energy, and environmental emissions
>objectives. An SWM system consisting of over 40
>unit processes for collection, transfer,
>separation, treatment ~e.g., combustion,
>composting!, and disposal of waste as well as
>remanufacturing facilities for processing
>recycled material is defined. Waste is
>categorized into 48 items and their generation
>rates are defined for three types of sectors:
>single-family dwelling, multifamily dwelling,
>and commercial. The mass flow of each item
>through all possible combinations of unit
>processes is represented in a linear programming
>model using a unique modeling approach. Cost,
>energy consumption, and environmental emissions
>associated with waste processing at each unit
>process are computed in a set of specially
>implemented unit process models. A life-cycle
>approach is used to compute energy consumption
>and emissions of CO, fossil- and biomass-derived
>CO2 ,NOx ,SOx , particulate matter, PM10 and
>greenhouse gases. The model is flexible to
>allow representation of site-specific issues,
>including waste diversion targets, mass flow
>restrictions and requirements, and targets for
>the values of cost, energy, and each
>emission. A companion paper describes the
>application of this model to examine several SWM
>scenarios for a hypothetical, but realistic, case study.
>Solano, E., Dumas, R.D., Harrison, K.W.,
>Ranjithan, S.R., Barlaz, M.A., Brill, E.D.,
>2002. Life-cycle based solid waste management
>II: Illustrative applications. Journal of
>Environmental Engineering 128(10): 993-1005.
>A companion paper described the development of
>the integrated solid waste management ~ISWM!
>model that considers cost, energy, and
>environmental releases associated with
>management of municipal solid waste. This paper
>demonstrates the application of the ISWM model
>to a hypothetical, but realistic, case study.
>Several solid waste management ~SWM! scenarios
>are studied, including the variation in energy
>and environmental emissions among alternate SWM
>strategies; the effect of mandated waste
>diversion ~through recycling and other
>beneficial uses of waste such as combustion to
>recover energy! on environmental releases and
>cost; the tradeoff between cost and the level of
>waste diversion; and the tradeoff between cost
>and greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, the
>flexibility of the model is illustrated by the
>identification of alternate SWM strategies that
>meet approximately the same objectives using
>distinctly different combinations of unit
>processes. This flexibility may be of
>importance to local solid waste management
>planners who must implement new SWM
>programs. Use of the model illustrates the
>potential impact of solid waste management
>policies and regulations on global environmental emissions.
>US EPA, 2002. Solid Waste Management and
>Greenhouse Gases: A Life-Cycle Assessment of
>Emissions and Sinks. EPA530-R-02-006.
>Washington, DC,
>Weitz, K., Barlaz, M.A., Ranjithan, S.R., Brill,
>D.E., Thorneloe, S., Ham, R., 1999. Life cycle
>management of municipal solid waste.
>International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 4(4): 195-201.
>Life-cycle assessment concepts and methods are
>currently being applied to evaluate integrated
>municipal solid waste management strategies
>throughout the world. The Research Triangle
>Institute and the U.S. Environmental Protection
>Agency are working to develop a computer-based
>decision support tool to evaluate integrated
>municipal solid waste management strategies in
>the United States. The waste management unit
>processes included in this tool are waste
>collection, transfer stations, recovery,
>compost, combustion, and landfill. Additional
>unit processes included are electrical energy
>production, transportation, and
>remanufacturing. The process models include
>methodologies for environmental and cost
>analysis. the environmental methodology
>calculates life cycle inventory type data for
>the different unit processes. The cost
>methodology calculates annualized construction
>and equipment capital costs, and operating costs
>per ton processed at the facility. The
>resulting environmental and cost parameters are
>allocated to individual components of the waste
>stream by process specific allocation
>methodologies. All of this information is
>implemented into the decision support support
>tool to provide a life-cycle management
>evaluation of integrated municipal solid waste management strategies.

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