A review of LCA assessments of forest-based bioeconomy products and processes under an ecosystem services perspective

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D'amato, D, Gaio, M & Semenzin, E 2020, ' A review of LCA assessments of forest-based bioeconomy products and processes under an ecosystem services perspective ', The Science of the Total Environment, vol. 706, 135859 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.135859

Title: A review of LCA assessments of forest-based bioeconomy products and processes under an ecosystem services perspective
Author: D'amato, Dalia; Gaio, Marco; Semenzin, Elena
Contributor organization: Department of Forest Sciences
Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS)
Forest Bioeconomy, Business and Sustainability
Forest Economics, Business and Society
Date: 2020-03-01
Language: eng
Number of pages: 11
Belongs to series: The Science of the Total Environment
ISSN: 0048-9697
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.135859
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/310525
Abstract: The emergence of politically driven bioeconomy strategies worldwide calls for considering the ecological issues associated with bio-based products. Traditionally, life cycle analysis (LCA) approaches are key tools used to assess impacts through product life cycles, but they present limitations regarding the accounting of multiple ecosystem service-related issues, at both the land-use and supply chain levels. Based on a systematic review of empirical articles, this study provides insights on using LCA assessments to account for ecosystem service-related impacts in the context of bioeconomy activities. We address the following research questions: what is the state of the art of the literature performing LCA assessments of forest-based bioeconomy activities, including the temporal distribution, the geographic areas and products/processes at study, and the approaches and methods used? 2. Which impacts and related midpoints are considered by the reviewed studies and what types of ecosystem service- related information do they bear? Out of over 600 articles found through the Scopus search, 155 were deemed relevant for the review. The literature focuses on North-America and Europe. Most of the articles assessed the environmental impact of lower-value biomass uses. Climate change was assessed in over 90% of the studies, while issues related to ozone, eutrophication, human toxicity, resource depletion, acidification, and environmental toxicity were assessed in 40% to 60% of the studies. While the impact categories accounted for in the reviewed LCA studies bear information relevant to certain provisioning and regulating services, several ecosystem services (especially cultural ones) remain unaccounted for. The implications of our study are relevant for professionals working in the ecosystem services, circular bioeconomy, and/or LCA communities. (C) 2019 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Subject: 4112 Forestry
511 Economics
ELCA
LCC
LCSA
SLCA
Natural capital
Sustainability transformations
LIFE-CYCLE ASSESSMENT
IMPACTS
ECONOMY
GREEN
SUSTAINABILITY
CLASSIFICATION
BIODIVERSITY
MANAGEMENT
COMPANIES
PROMISE
Peer reviewed: Yes
Rights: cc_by_nc_nd
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: publishedVersion


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