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31.08.2018 | Original Article | Ausgabe 5/2018

Energy, Ecology and Environment 5/2018

Compartive life cycle assessment of mechanized and semi-mechanized methods of potato cultivation

Zeitschrift:
Energy, Ecology and Environment > Ausgabe 5/2018
Autoren:
Alireza Shahmohammadi, Hadi Veisi, Kouros Khoshbakht

Abstract

Evaluating the environmental performance of production systems is necessary for the assessment of ecosystems from the perspective of sustainability. Life cycle assessment is a suitable method of evaluating the environmental impact of a product, process or activity by identifying, quantifying and assessing the resources expended and the emissions and waste released into the environment. The present study used life cycle assessment (LCA) of one ton of potatoes (Solanum tuberosum L.) from the boundary of a farm in Markazi province in Iran. The data were obtained from 120 questionnaires and include input sources from the cities of Arak and Shazand for semi-mechanized and traditional cultivation systems. Investigation of the environmental impact of potato cultivation was done using the LCA method and Simapro 8.0.4 software. It was estimated for abiotic depletion potential, global warming potential and ozone layer depletion potential. The results show that the semi-mechanized farming system has destructive effects on global warming (1.71 kgSbeq) and causes abiotic depletion (227.56 kgco2eq). The traditional cultivation method causes ozone layer depletion (0.00005 kgCFC-11) from diesel fuel consumption by water pumps. The strategies outlined in the alternative framework include replacement by renewable energy, ecological and agronomic pest control and optimization strategies such as development and improvement of machinery in conformity with international standards, training farmers to make optimal use of inputs and education to reduce damaging effects to the environment.

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