System delimitation in life cycle assessment (LCA) of aquaculture: striving for valid and comprehensive environmental assessment using rainbow trout farming as a case study.

Samuel-Fitwi, Biniam, Schroeder, J. P. and Schulz, Carsten (2013) System delimitation in life cycle assessment (LCA) of aquaculture: striving for valid and comprehensive environmental assessment using rainbow trout farming as a case study. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 18 (3). pp. 577-589. DOI 10.1007/s11367-012-0510-z.

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Abstract

Life cycle assessment (LCA) has been in the last one decade used as a standardized and structured method of evaluating the environmental impacts of aquaculture arising throughout the entire life cycle. However, aquaculture system hardly applied system expansion whenever a multifunctional process has more than one functional flow. The objective of this study is to develop a methodological approach for consequential LCA and model the system expansion of the different affected processes of aquaculture. In this study, we have considered the system expansion in two different stages in the life cycle of the fish production: aquacultural stage, with case study of trout aquaculture, and feed manufacturing stage. Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) production was used as a case study to illustrate the method using different scenarios of system expansion. The results of the six different scenarios of system expansion showed considerable variation among the different scenarios towards the environmental impact of trout aquaculture. Regarding global warming potential, the contributions vary by 5-fold; for acidification, variations were up to 32 %, and for land use, the contributions varied from 0.6 to 1.3 m(2)a/kg of trout demanded in Germany. It appeared that eutrophication is similar in all the scenarios considered. This article showed that system expansion can be used to handle the allocation issues of the co-products in the rainbow trout supply chain, thus, can be effectively used when analyzing the environmental consequences of changes in future rainbow trout production. Furthermore, consequential LCA may be important when comparing the impacts of alternative meal choices of aquafeeds. This may increase the incentive for speedy replacement of alternative meals, thus, reducing the dependence on the utilization of the limiting fisheries resources.

Document Type: Article
Additional Information: Times Cited: 0 Samuel-Fitwi, Biniam Schroeder, Jan P. Schulz, Carsten
Keywords: Aquaculture Aquafeed Consequential LCA Life cycle assessment (LCA) Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) System expansion
Research affiliation: Kiel University > Kiel Marine Science
OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence > FO-R04
OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence
Kiel University
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1007/s11367-012-0510-z
ISSN: 0948-3349
Projects: Future Ocean
Date Deposited: 08 Jul 2014 09:41
Last Modified: 29 Jul 2019 14:37
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/25172

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