Life cycle assessment framework for asphalt pavements: methods to calculate and allocate energy of binder and additives Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • The construction, maintenance and disposal of asphalt pavements may lead to considerable environmental impacts, in terms of energy use and emissions during the life of the pavement. In order to enable quantification of the potential environmental impacts due to construction, maintenance and disposal of roads, an open life cycle assessment (LCA) framework for the asphalt pavements is presented in this paper. Emphasis was placed on the calculation and allocation of energy used for binder and additives at the project level. It was concluded from this study that when progressing from LCA to its corresponding life cycle cost, the feedstock energy of the binder becomes highly relevant as the cost of the binder will be reflected in its alternative value as fuel. Regarding additives like wax, a framework for energy allocation was suggested. The suggested project level LCA framework was demonstrated in a limited case study of a Swedish asphalt pavement. It was concluded that the asphalt production and transporting materials were the two most energy-consuming processes, emitting most greenhouse gases depending on the fuel type and electricity mix. © 2012 Taylor & Francis.

author list (cited authors)

  • Butt, A. A., Mirzadeh, I., Toller, S., & Birgisson, B.

citation count

  • 39

publication date

  • April 2014