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Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1693; doi:10.3390/su9101693

Development and Piloting of Sustainability Assessment Metrics for Arctic Process Industry in Finland—The Biorefinery Investment and Slag Processing Service Cases

1
Clean Technologies Research Group, Department of Bioproducts and -systems, School of Chemical Technology, Aalto University, Espoo 00076 AALTO, Finland
2
Digipolis-Kemi Technology Park, Cluster of Arctic Industry and Circular Economy in Lapland, Kemin 94600, Finland
3
VTT Technical Research Center of Finland, Espoo 02150, Finland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 9 August 2017 / Revised: 12 September 2017 / Accepted: 18 September 2017 / Published: 22 September 2017
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Abstract

Regionally, there has been a lot of focus on the advancement of sustainable arctic industry and circular economy activities within process industry in the Finnish Lapland. In this study, collaboration between university and industry was established facilitated by regional development actors to develop and pilot test a sustainability assessment approach taking into account previous work in this field. The industry partners in this study were a biorefinery investment in the first case and a slag processing service in the second case. As a result of the joint efforts, novel sets of environmental and economic sustainability assessment indicators and associated sub-indicators were developed and the existing set of social indicators was updated. Moreover, environmental and social sustainability assessments were implemented in the biorefinery case accompanied by a separate evaluation of regional economic impacts. In the slag processing case, environmental, economic and social sustainability were assessed. The results of the sustainability assessments indicated very good level of overall performance in both cases. However, specific elements that contributed to lower level of performance included lack of specific sustainability management and reporting approaches and need for better performance in supply chain sustainability, monitoring of greenhouse gas emissions, life cycle thinking and circular economy training. The expected effects of the planned investment on the regional economy were very positive based on the results of the evaluation. View Full-Text
Keywords: sustainability; metrics; indicator; industry; arctic; circular economy sustainability; metrics; indicator; industry; arctic; circular economy
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Husgafvel, R.; Poikela, K.; Honkatukia, J.; Dahl, O. Development and Piloting of Sustainability Assessment Metrics for Arctic Process Industry in Finland—The Biorefinery Investment and Slag Processing Service Cases. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1693.

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