Comparative Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of the Roadside Noise barriers
Examensarbete för masterexamen
Design and construction project management (MPDCM), MSc
The transport sector has a significant contribution to the global warming potential and road infrastructure is accounted for up to 40 percent of it. Therefore, there is a growing interest among policymakers in investigating sustainable development in these areas. Among road infrastructure, this thesis chooses noise barriers to conduct a comparative life cycle assessment (LCA). The LCA methodology follows ISO 14040 standard, consisting of goal and scope definitions, inventory analysis, impact assessment, and interpretation. Ecoinvent 3.8 is used as a database and environmental impact is assessed through OpenLCA 1.11.0. Besides comparing the results of various noise barriers, this project also aims to compare the difference between two end-of-life scenarios. In one scenario, all material will be disposed of at the end of life while in the second one, the recyclable amount of each material will be treated to be used in the latter cycles. The results indicate that raw materials processing has the highest impact in the whole life cycle of barriers. Therefore, decreasing primary raw materials consumption can contribute significantly to diminishing environmental impacts. Additionally, the findings through dominance analysis and discussion can be helpful for decision-makers to detect the potential areas to improve.
Life cycle assessment (LCA), Roadside noise barriers, Environmental impact, Global warming potential, Circular transition.