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Publication type: Article in scientific journal
Type of review: Peer review (publication)
Title: Social life cycle assessment : specific approach and case study for Switzerland
Authors: Lobsiger-Kägi, Evelyn
López, Luis
Kuehn, Tobias
Roth, Raoul
Carabias-Hütter, Vicente
Zipper, Christian
DOI: 10.21256/zhaw-4928
Published in: Sustainability
Volume(Issue): 10
Issue: 12
Page(s): 4382
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher / Ed. Institution: MDPI
ISSN: 2071-1050
Language: English
Subjects: Social life cycle assessment; Sustainability; Relevance analysis; Performance reference point; Renewable energy technologies
Subject (DDC): 333.79: Energy
Abstract: This article proposes a specific social life cycle assessment (S-LCA) approach, to be applied in a case study on energy production in Switzerland. The aim of the present study is to describe the social conditions along the global supply chains and to compare them with the social situation in Switzerland. Therefore, a specific S-LCA methodology was developed that combines a relevance analysis with a performance reference point (PRP) assessment. The relevance analysis is carried out to identify the most relevant unit processes and S-LCA indicators and the Swiss PRPs (SPRPs) are designed to compare the social issues along the value chain to the situation in Switzerland. The methodology was applied to two life cycle stages of the copper supply chain (resource extraction and wire production), relevant for the production of renewable energy technologies, where it was found that the most critical step is mining in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) due to the artisanal way of mining. The proposed methodology offers a comprehensive overview for the analysis of supply chains and the comparison of different life cycle phases. Nevertheless, the methodology can result in a very coarse resolution with low validity. However, if the data and the results are treated transparently, they provide meaningful information about the social conditions along the supply chain.
Fulltext version: Published version
License (according to publishing contract): CC BY 4.0: Attribution 4.0 International
Departement: School of Engineering
Organisational Unit: Institute of Sustainable Development (INE)
Published as part of the ZHAW project: PV2050: Sustainability, market deployment and interaction to the grid – the impacts of advanced PV
Appears in collections:Publikationen School of Engineering

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