Integrated assessment of vehicle fuels with lifecycle sustainability assessment : tested for two fossil fuel and two biofuel value chains : report from a project within the collaborative research program Renewable transportation fuels and systems

The production and use of vehicle fuels results in both environmental and socio-economic impacts. In the Renewable Energy Directive (RED) the European Union (EU) implemented mandatory sustainability criteria for biofuels for transport and liquid biofuels. These include demand for reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and restrictions related to land with high biodiversity value. This directive and the vast majority of the available studies enfolding vehicle fuels, focus on environmental impacts, and in many cases primarily on GHG emissions. To move towards sustainable development, a broader scope of sustainability issues needs to be taken into account in future assessment efforts and policy. In order to address a broad range of sustainability aspects a method labelled Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA) can be employed. It combines three different lifecycle methods, corresponding to the three pillars of sustainable development; environmental-LCA (E-LCA), socialLCA (S-LCA) and life cycle cost (LCC). In recognition of these knowledge gaps, the overall aim of this project is to examine the use of LCSA to assess the sustainability performance of transportation fuels. This is achieved by applying it to four selected fossil and renewable vehicle fuel value chains. The principal aim of this work is to develop the methodology of LCSA with focus on a full integration step in the assessment. The integration of different sustainability perspectives is a challenge, as it is inevitably based on value judgements. In this analysis we apply the Multi Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) methodology using different stakeholder profiles for the integration. This approach has the advantage that it increases transparency on these value judgements. Further, as a part of this work, the policy relevance of LCSA results is discussed briefly. The analysis considers four vehicle fuel value chains: Petrol based on crude oil from Nigeria ; petrol based on crud from Russia; Ethanol based on sugarcane grown in Brazil, and ethanol based on corn (maize) grown in the USA. Both biofuels represent first generation biofuels. These vehicle fuels were selected so as to build on an earlier study where an S-LCA was conducted for nine vehicle fuel chains.1 They were also attractive as they have relatively high data availability. These four fuels were also found to have relatively high potential risks of negative social impacts in the previous study.


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: 70
  • Serial:
    • f3 report
    • Issue Number: 2016:12
    • Publisher: f3 the Swedish Knowledge Centre for Renewable Transportation Fuels, Sweden

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01720257
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI)
  • Files: ITRD, VTI
  • Created Date: Oct 23 2019 11:22AM