FG Technischer Umweltschutz / Sustainable Engineering

63 Items

Recent Submissions
Advancing the water footprint into an instrument to support achieving the SDGs – Recommendations from the “Water as a Global Resources” Research Initiative (GRoW)

Berger, Markus ; Campos, Jazmin ; Carolli, Mauro ; Dantas, Ianna ; Forin, Silvia ; Kosatica, Ervin ; Kramer, Annika ; Mikosch, Natalia ; Nouri, Hamideh ; Schlattmann, Anna ; Schmidt, Falk ; Schomberg, Anna ; Semmling, Elsa (2021-03-04)

The water footprint has developed into a widely-used concept to examine water use and resulting local impacts caused during agricultural and industrial production. Building on recent advancements in the water footprint concept, it can be an effective steering instrument to support, inter alia, achieving sustainable development goals (SDGs) - SDG 6 in particular. Within the research program “Wat...

Life cycle assessment of decarbonization options—towards scientifically robust carbon neutrality

Finkbeiner, Matthias ; Bach, Vanessa (2021-04-01)


The First City Organizational LCA Case Study: Feasibility and Lessons Learned from Vienna

Cremer, Alexander ; Berger, Markus ; Müller, Katrin ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2021-04-30)

Cities are recognized as a major contributor to environmental pressures. Recently, organizational LCA (OLCA) has been found to align well with requirements for city-scale environmental decision support and a novel city-OLCA framework was introduced. City-OLCA combines two relevant aspects: It covers activities beyond public service provision (multi-stakeholder) and emissions beyond greenhouse g...

Water Footprint and Life Cycle Assessment: The Complementary Strengths of Analyzing Global Freshwater Appropriation and Resulting Local Impacts

Gerbens-Leenes, Winnie ; Berger, Markus ; Allan, John Anthony (2021-03-15)


Organizational water footprint: a methodological guidance

Forin, Silvia ; Mikosch, Natalia ; Berger, Markus ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2019-08-28)

Purpose This paper proposes a practical methodological approach to assess the water footprint at the organizational level, in line with the current development of life-cycle based approaches toward the organizational scale on the one hand and footprint metrics on the other hand. This methodological development allows for organizational water footprint applications intended to inform management...

Organizational water footprint: method and application

Forin, Silvia (2021)

The availability and quality of water resources are increasingly endangered. Aware of the environmental and business risks related to water scarcity and pollution, organizational water users face three main challenge in protecting the water resources needed along their chain chains: measuring their water input and discharge quality and quantity, identifying their geographical location and the r...

Addressing water quality in water footprinting: current status, methods and limitations

Mikosch, Natalia ; Berger, Markus ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-11-16)

Purpose: In contrast to water consumption, water pollution has gained less attention in water footprinting so far. Unlike water scarcity impact assessment, on which a consensus has recently been achieved, there is no agreement on how to address water quality deterioration in water footprinting. This paper provides an overview of existing water footprint methods to calculate impacts associated w...

Life Cycle Based Comparison of Textile Ecolabels

Diekel, Felice ; Mikosch, Natalia ; Bach, Vanessa ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2021-02-06)

Environmental impacts of textile production increased over the last decades. This also led to an increasing demand for sustainable textiles and ecolabels, which intend to provide information on environmental aspects of textiles for the consumer. The goal of the paper is to assess selected labels with regard to their strengths and weaknesses, as well as their coverage of relevant environmental a...

Distance-to-target weighting in LCA—A matter of perspective

Muhl, Marco ; Berger, Markus ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-11-19)

Purpose: Weighting can enable valuable support for decision-makers when interpreting life cycle assessment (LCA) results. Distance-to-target (DtT) weighting is based on the distance of policy (desired) targets to current environmental situations, and recent methodological DtT developments are based on a weighting perspective of a single region or country, considering mainly environmental situat...

Mineral resources in life cycle impact assessment: part II – recommendations on application-dependent use of existing methods and on future method development needs

Berger, Markus ; Sonderegger, Thomas ; Alvarenga, Rodrigo ; Bach, Vanessa ; Cimprich, Alexander ; Dewulf, Jo ; Frischknecht, Rolf ; Guinée, Jeroen ; Helbig, Christoph ; Huppertz, Tom ; Jolliet, Olivier ; Motoshita, Masaharu ; Northey, Stephen ; Peña, Claudia A. ; Rugani, Benedetto ; Sahnoune, Abdelhadi ; Schrijvers, Dieuwertje ; Schulze, Rita ; Sonnemann, Guido ; Valero, Alicia ; Weidema, Bo P. ; Young, Steven B. (2020-02-11)

Purpose: Assessing impacts of abiotic resource use has been a topic of persistent debate among life cycle impact assessment (LCIA) method developers and a source of confusion for life cycle assessment (LCA) practitioners considering the different interpretations of the safeguard subject for mineral resources and the resulting variety of LCIA methods to choose from. Based on the review and asses...

Comparison of Different Monetization Methods in LCA: A Review

Arendt, Rosalie ; Bachmann, Till M. ; Motoshita, Masaharu ; Bach, Vanessa ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-12-15)

Different LCA methods based on monetization of environmental impacts are available. Therefore, relevant monetization methods, namely Ecovalue12, Stepwise2006, LIME3, Ecotax, EVR, EPS, the Environmental Prices Handbook, Trucost and the MMG-Method were compared quantitatively and qualitatively, yielding results for 18 impact categories. Monetary factors for the same impact category range mostly b...

Hydrogen and hydrogen-derived fuels through methane decomposition of natural gas – GHG emissions and costs

Timmerberg, Sebastian ; Kaltschmitt, Martin ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-05-04)

Hydrogen can be produced from the decomposition of methane (also called pyrolysis). Many studies assume that this process emits few greenhouse gas (GHG) because the reaction from methane to hydrogen yields only solid carbon and no CO2. This paper assesses the life-cycle GHG emissions and the levelized costs for hydrogen provision from methane decomposition in three configurations (plasma, molte...

Renewable electricity targets in selected MENA countries – Assessment of available resources, generation costs and GHG emissions

Timmerberg, Sebastian ; Sanna, Anas ; Kaltschmitt, Martin ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2019-10-25)

MENA countries published national policy targets for the implementation of electricity from renewable energy (RE). These targets are important as they serve as framework for stakeholders in the energy sector like businesses and administration, while also showing governmental ambitions to the public. This paper investigates the impact on resources, generation cost and GHG emissions if the target...

Hydrogen supply from North Africa to the EU

Timmerberg, Sebastian (2020)

The research objective of this thesis is to investigate the potential role of hydrogen production in North Africa for an energy supply of the EU under a climate change mitigation perspective. It is divided into three research questions. These questions are related to the energy resources in North Africa, hydrogen production technologies and a potential transport of hydrogen to the EU. Assessmen...

Fabrication of a Robust PEM Water Electrolyzer Based on Non‐Noble Metal Cathode Catalyst: [Mo3S13]2− Clusters Anchored to N‐Doped Carbon Nanotubes

Holzapfel, Peter K. R. ; Bühler, Melanie ; Escalera‐López, Daniel ; Bierling, Markus ; Speck, Florian D. ; Mayrhofer, Karl J. J. ; Cherevko, Serhiy ; Pham, Chuyen V. ; Thiele, Simon (2020-08-16)

High investment costs and a dependence on noble metal catalysts currently obstruct the large‐scale implementation of proton exchange membrane water electrolyzers (PEMWEs) for converting fluctuating green electricity into chemical energy via water splitting. In this context, this work presents a high‐performing and stable non‐noble metal catalyst for the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER), consis...

Organizational Life Cycle Assessment of a Service Providing SME for Renewable Energy Projects (PV and Wind) in the United Kingdom

Marx, Hendrik ; Forin, Silvia ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-06-01)

Companies are increasingly interested in reducing their environmental footprint. Thereby, they face the challenge of identifying and mitigating their specific impacts and hotspots and simultaneously avoid burden shifting. The organizational life cycle assessment (OLCA) method was conceived and successfully tested for the assessment if companies’ potential environmental impacts. Still, the metho...

Sustainability Assessment of a Single-Use Plastics Ban

Herberz, Timo ; Barlow, Claire Y. ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-05-05)

Governments around the world are introducing single-use plastics bans to alleviate plastic marine pollution. This paper investigates whether banning single-use plastic items is an appropriate strategy to protect the environment. Product life cycle assessment was conducted for single-use plastic and single-use non-plastic alternatives. The life cycle impacts of the two product categories were co...

Criteria-Based Approach to Select Relevant Environmental SDG Indicators for the Automobile Industry

Lisowski, Sergej ; Berger, Markus ; Caspers, Justus ; Mayr-Rauch, Klaus ; Bäuml, Georg ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-10-23)

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) cannot be met without the private sector. In order to contribute to the fulfillment of the SDGs, companies have to identify their influence and select relevant SDGs. However, so far no research has been conducted on the influence of companies or industries at the most concrete level in the SDG framework—the 247 SDG indicators. In this pape...

Environmental Impacts of a Pet Dog: An LCA Case Study

Yavor, Kim Maya ; Lehmann, Annekatrin ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-04-22)

The number of pet animals in the European Union is increasing over the last decades. Few studies with a limited focus in terms of impacts and life cycle stages exist that assess the environmental impacts of dogs. This paper addresses the entire life cycle of a dog. An LCA study on an average dog was conducted considering the pet food and dog excrements, i.e., urine and feces. Fifteen impact cat...

A Review of Life Cycle Assessment Studies of Electric Vehicles with a Focus on Resource Use

Dolganova, Iulia ; Rödl, Anne ; Bach, Vanessa ; Kaltschmitt, Martin ; Finkbeiner, Matthias (2020-03-13)

Changes in the mobility patterns have evoked concerns about the future availability of certain raw materials necessary to produce alternative drivetrains and related batteries. The goal of this article is to determine if resource use aspects are adequately reflected within life cycle assessment (LCA) case studies of electric vehicles (EV). Overall, 103 LCA studies on electric vehicles from 2009...