Automating relative and absolute environmental sustainability assessments of bio-based products

Samir Meramo*, Eleonora Pasutto, Sumesh Sukumara

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

Awareness of long-term environmental challenges has motivated society toward a more sustainable future. Biotechnology is expected to contribute to the transition towards sustainability. Automation can play an important role in this transition, enabling faster decision-making at early stages. Therefore, an automated relative and absolute environmental sustainability assessment is presented to boost innovation in biotechnology. The automated calculation methodology uses computer-aided tools (dedicated software and Python codes) for the fast quantification of the environmental sustainability performance of bio-based products including scenario and uncertainty analysis. Two case studies (i) succinic acid (SA) and (ii) poly-lactic acid (PLA) are evaluated to test the capabilities of the automated assessment. The results show a carbon footprint and land use of 5.46 kg CO2 eq and 1.26 m2a crop eq for SA and 3.82 kg CO2 eq and 0.74 m2a crop eq for PLA. Transgression of planetary boundaries was found in both SA and PLA production.
Original languageEnglish
Article number130196
JournalBioresource Technology
Volume394
Number of pages10
ISSN0960-8524
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2024

Keywords

  • Absolute sustainability
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Bioprocesses
  • Planetary boundaries
  • Poly-lactic acid
  • Succinic acid

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