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Life cycle assessment of hydrotreated vegetable oil from rape, oil palm and Jatropha
Chalmers, SE-41296 Gothenburg, Sweden .
Chalmers, SE-41296 Gothenburg, Sweden .
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering and Sustainable Development.
Chalmers, SE-41296 Gothenburg, Sweden . (Chemical Environmental Science)
2011 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 19, no 2-3, p. 129-137Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A life cycle assessment of hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) biofuel was performed. The study was commissioned by Volvo Technology Corporation and Volvo Penta Corporation as part of an effort to gain a better understanding of the environmental impact of potential future biobased liquid fuels for cars and trucks. The life cycle includes production of vegetable oil from rape, oil palm or Jatropha, transport of the oil to the production site, production of the HVO from the oil, and combustion of the HVO. The functional unit of the study is 1 kWh energy out from the engine of a heavy-duty truck and the environmental impact categories that are considered are global warming potential (GWP), acidification potential (AP), eutrophication potential (EP) and embedded fossil production energy. System expansion was used to take into account byproducts from activities in the systems; this choice was made partly to make this study comparable to results reported by other studies. The results show that HVO produced from palm oil combined with energy production from biogas produced from the palm oil mill effluent has the lowest environmental impact of the feedstocks investigated in this report. HVO has a significantly lower life cycle GWP than conventional diesel oil for all feedstocks investigated, and a GWP that is comparable to results for e.g. rape methyl ester reported in the literature. The results show that emissions from soil caused by microbial activities and leakage are the largest contributors to most environmental impact categories, which is supported also by other studies. Nitrous oxide emissions from soil account for more than half of the GWP of HVO. Nitrogen oxides and ammonia emissions from soil cause almost all of the life cycle EP of HVO and contribute significantly to the AP as well. The embedded fossil production energy was shown to be similar to results for e.g. rape methyl ester from other studies. A sensitivity analysis shows that variations in crop yield and in nitrous oxide emissions from microbial activities in soil can cause significant changes to the results.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 19, no 2-3, p. 129-137
Keywords [en]
Hydrotreatment; Jatropha; LCA; Palm oil; Rapeseed oil
National Category
Other Environmental Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-11695DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2010.02.008ISI: 000285227800004Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-78649316952OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-11695DiVA, id: diva2:324118
Available from: 2010-06-14 Created: 2010-06-14 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved

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Fröling, Morgan

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