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Chemical or Natural? Including LCA in Social CBA to Compare Remediation Alternatives for a Dry-Cleaning Facility

Centre for Economics and Corporate Sustainability (CEDON), KU Leuven, 1000 Brussels, Belgium
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Sustainability 2019, 11(7), 1975; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11071975
Received: 1 March 2019 / Revised: 26 March 2019 / Accepted: 1 April 2019 / Published: 3 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green and Sustainable Remediation of Contaminated Site)
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Abstract

The choice between remediation alternatives for contaminated sites is complicated by different elements, e.g., the occurrence of multiple contaminants, the extent of the contamination, or the urban location, complicate the choice between remediation alternatives. This paper addresses this challenging choice by analyzing a case study of an extensive soil and groundwater contamination by a dry-cleaning company. For remediating this site, two alternatives were proposed. The first remediation alternative combines several techniques with in-situ chemical oxidization being the most important one. Due to the potential negative impact of this alternative on local residents a second remediation alternative was drawn up, in which the focus lies on the use of stimulated biological degradation. A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) was performed on both alternatives and showed that the second alternative had a lower environmental impact. The inclusion of monetized LCA results in the calculation of a social Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBA) provided a more extensive view of the secondary environmental costs and benefits of the remediation alternatives. The results of the social CBA allow to conclude that both alternatives are not socially desirable, the chemical alternative however is socially less disadvantageous than the more natural remediation alternative. View Full-Text
Keywords: Life Cycle Assessment; social Cost-Benefit Analysis; dry cleaning; soil remediation; groundwater remediation; monetization Life Cycle Assessment; social Cost-Benefit Analysis; dry cleaning; soil remediation; groundwater remediation; monetization
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Huysegoms, L.; Rousseau, S.; Cappuyns, V. Chemical or Natural? Including LCA in Social CBA to Compare Remediation Alternatives for a Dry-Cleaning Facility. Sustainability 2019, 11, 1975.

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