Life cycle assessment of a small-scale incinerator combined with heating production

Chaithawat Kaewmueang, Ronnachart Munsin, Nattaporn Chaiyat


This research studies the environmental impacts of a small-scale incinerator combined with heating production (ICH), which has a combustion rate of refuse derived fuel type three (RDF-3) of approximately 2 ton/day, a life span of approximately 20 y, and a functional unit of approximately 1 kgRDF-3. A life cycle assessment (LCA) under the standard of ISO 14040 is used to investigate the 10 impacts by using the SimaPro program under the ReCiPe midpoint and endpoint methods. From the study results, it found that ten LCA impacts of the small-scale ICH under the midpoint level are a climate change of 3.50E-04 kg CO2 eq, an ozone depletion of 1.76E-10 kg CFC-11 eq, a human toxicity of 8.87E-02 kg 1,4 DB eq, a particulate matter formation of 9.40E-06 PM10 eq, a terrestrial acidification of 1.64E-05 kgSO2 eq, an eutrophication of 2.21E-06 P eq, a terrestrial ecotoxicity of 2.54E-06 kg 1,4 DB eq, a freshwater ecotoxicity of 1.43E-04 kg 1,4 DB eq, a metal depletion of 5.84-E04 kg Fe eq, and a fossil depletion of 9.25E-04 kg oil eq. The LCA impacts are found in the construction, operation, and decommissioning phases at approximately 42.52%, 66.50%, and -9.02%, respectively. The main environmental affect are essentially driven by an electricity of 47,580 kWh, and a steel of 3,900 kg. Finally, the LCA single score under the endpoint level is found at approximately 474.34 Pt.

Full Text:



Chaya, W., & Gheewala, H. (2007). Life cycle assessment of MSW-to-energy schemes in Thailand. Journal of Cleaner Production, 15, 1463-1468. Retrieved from

Cherubini, F., Bargigli, S., & Ulgiati, S. (2009). Life cycle assessment (LCA) of waste management strategies: Landfilling, sorting plant and incineration. Energy, 34, 2116-2123. Retrieved from

Gianfilippo, M., Costa, G., Pantini, S., Allegrini, E., Lombardi, F., & Astrup, T. (2016). LCA of management strategies for RDF incineration and gasification bottom ash based on experimental leaching data. Waste Management, 47, 285-298. Retrieved from

Havukainen, J., Zhan, M., Dong, J., Liikanen, M., Deviatkin, I., Li, X., & Horttanainen, M. (2017). Environmental impact assessment of municipal solid waste management incorporating mechanical treatment of waste and incineration in Hangzhou China. Journal of Cleaner Production, 141, 453- 461. Retrieved from

Hong, J.R., Wang, F.G., Guo, Z.R., Cheng, X., Liu, Q., Zhang, J.P., & Qian, R.G. (2006). Life cycle assessment of BMT-based integrated municipal solid waste management: Case study in Pudong China. Resources Conservation & Recycling, 49, 129-146. Retrieved from

Huijbregts, M.A.J., Steinmann, Z.J.N., Elshout, P.M.F., Stam, G., Verones, F., Vieira, M.D.M., Hollander, A., Zijp, M., & Van, R. (2016). ReCiPe 2016: a harmonized life cycle impact assessment method at midpoint and endpoint level Report I: Characterization. Retrieved from

Mendes, M., Aramaki, T., & Hanaki, K. (2004). Comparison of the environmental impact of incineration and landfilling in São Paulo City as determined by LCA. Resources Conservation & Recycling, 41, 47-63. Retrieved from

Ning, S-K., Chang, N., & Hung, M. (2013). Comparative streamlined life cycle assessment for two types of municipal solid waste incinerator. Journal of Cleaner Production, 53, 56-66. Retrieved from

Ondokmai, P., & Chaiyat, N. (2018). Life cycle assessment of organic rankine cycle power plant combined with centralized drying room from geothermal energy. Engineering Journal Chiang Mai University, 26(3), 1-15. Retrieved from

Sengnavong, S. (2018). Study of electricity generation from medical waste by orgarnic rankine cycle case study: Lampang hospital (Master degrees, Renewable Energy Engineering, Maejo University, Thailand).

SimaPro for Education (Version [Computer software]. Chiang Mai, Thailand: Maejo University. Turconi, R., Butera, S., Boldrin, A.,

Grosso, M., Rigamonti, L., & Astrup, T. (2011). Life cycle assessment of waste incineration in Denmark and Italy using two LCA models. Waste Management & Research, 0(0), 1-13. doi: 10.1177/0734242X11417489

Yang, G., Thibaut, G., Zhaozhe, Z., Ruonan, H., Jinping, T., & Lujun, C. (2018). Environmental life-cycle

assessment of municipal solid waste incineration stocks in Chinese industrial parks. Resources Conservation & Recycling, 139, 387-395. Retrieved from

Ziyang, L., Bilitewski, B., Nanwen, Z., Xiaoli, C., Bing, L., & Youcai, Z. (2015). Environmental impacts of a large-scale incinerator with mixed MSW of high water content from a LCA perspective. Journal of Environmental Sciences, 30, 173-179. Retrieved from


  • There are currently no refbacks.