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20.07.2020 | ORIGINAL ARTICLE | Ausgabe 6/2020

Journal of Material Cycles and Waste Management 6/2020

Life cycle assessment of lightweight aggregates produced with ashes from municipal solid waste incineration

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Material Cycles and Waste Management > Ausgabe 6/2020
Autoren:
Margarida J. Quina, Rita Garcia, Ana S. Simões, Rosa M. Quinta-Ferreira
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Abstract

Air pollution control residues (APCr) from municipal solid waste (MSW) incineration are hazardous waste, and their management requires holistic approaches within technical, economical, legislative, and environmental constraints. This work deals with the recycling of APCr for producing lightweight aggregates (LWA) commonly manufactured by firing natural clay. The main objectives are to evaluate the environmental impacts of LWA with and without incorporating APCr and assess whether APCr recycling in LWA is beneficial, based on the life-cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. The system boundary included raw material extraction, grinding, mixture, firing, cooling, and packing (cradle-to-gate). Results were analysed following the impact assessment methods recommended by the International Reference Life Cycle Data System. Results pointed out a reduction of impacts in all categories when 3% of natural clay are replaced by APCr. The highest gains occurred for toxicity categories (HTc, HTnc) and resulted mainly from avoiding landfill of APCr. For non-toxicity categories, impacts were dominated by the emissions from the kiln firing process, which were similar for both LWA; therefore, impact reductions from APCr use in LWA in these categories were modest. LCA results show that the valorisation of APCr in LWA may be an environmentally sound solution to avoid landfill disposal practices.

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