Life cycle assessment of railways for application in environmental product declarations

Posted by kanhorikiri
File: 
Type: 
Full LCA available on the web
Comparative: 
no
Publication year: 
2010
Language: 
English
Code: 
Others
Product: 
Bothnia Line (Railway)
Quality and sources
Is the study a: 
Detailed LCA
Is the study compliant with ISO 14044?: 
Yes
Sponsor name(s): 
Botniabanan AB
Sponsor name(s): 
Swedish Rail Administration (Banverket)
Sponsor type: 
Public administration
Practitioner(s): 
IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute Ltd.
Practitioner(s) type: 
Institut/Technical research center
Summary
Functional unit: 
60 years from construction
Goal and scope of the summary: 
Life Cycle Assessment was conducted to analyse the environmental performance of the Bothnia Line and to develop Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for the Bothnia Line. 7 general component models for the LCA on the railway system were adopted: 1. Railway track foundation model. 2. Railway track model. 3. Railway electric power and control system model. 4. Railway tunnel model. 5. Railway bridge model. 6. Railway passenger station and freight station and freight terminal model. 7. Passenger and freight train model including train operation. To treat separately the freight and passenger transports, with the used traffic assumption, 31.5% of the infrastructure has been allocated to the passenger transports and 68.5% has been allocated to the transport of goods.

For the use of primary energy resources, train traffic stands for 56.7% and the infrastructure stands for 43.3%.
For the emissions of greenhouse gases, train traffic stands for 6.7% and the infrastructure stands for 93.3%.
For the emissions of acidifying pollutants, train traffic stands for 9.8% and the infrastructure stands for 90.2%.

The main part of the contributions to all environmental impact categories comes from raw material acquisition and production of materials used for the construction of the infrastructure, like steel and concrete who represent some 85% of the total material related CO2 emissions.

Material impact(s): 
Acidification
Ozone layer depletion
Water consumption
Waste generation
Global warming
Eutrophication
Toxicity / Eco-toxicity
Raw material impact level: 
High
Manufacturing impact(s): 
Acidification
Water consumption
Waste generation
Global warming
Eutrophication
Toxicity / Eco-toxicity
Manufacturing impact level: 
High
Usage impact(s): 
Acidification
Water consumption
Waste generation
Global warming
Eutrophication
Toxicity / Eco-toxicity
Usage impact level: 
Low
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