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Special Issue "Development and Application of Life Cycle Impact Assessment Methods for a Sustainable Society"

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "A4: Bio-Energy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 July 2021) | Viewed by 1847

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Norihiro Itsubo
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Environmental and Information Studies, Tokyo City University, 3-3-1 Ushikubonishi, Tsuzuki, Yokohama, Kanagawa 224-8551, Japan
Interests: life cycle assessment; life cycle impact assessment; environmental economics; environmental impact assessment

Special Issue Information

Life cycle impact assessment (LCIA), a step of life cycle assessment is one of the key research fields of environmental science, and many methods have been developed and proposed internationally. Rapid progress of data availability and information technology has enabled this research field to grow dramatically. Geographical ranges of assessment have expanded from regional to global scale. The scope of impact categories has also expanded from traditional impact categories to social issues. Many endpoint type methods related to biodiversity and ecosystem services have been proposed, and weighting methods providing single scores have also received attention from international bodies. There are a variety of applications of the LCIA method—global supply chains, organizations and local governments, as well as products and services.

This Special Issue invites research papers and review articles related with the development of the life cycle impact assessment method and applications to case studies. The following are some examples of topics to be covered in this Special Issue:

  • Development of regional and global scale life cycle impact assessment for selected impact categories such as air pollution, water use, climate change, resource consumptions, land use, plastic pollution, and toxicological impacts;
  • Assessment methods based on natural science, including the midpoint and endpoint approach. Development of assessment methods to evaluate impacts on human health, ecological health, natural resources, ecosystem services, and cultural heritages using advanced techniques are also welcome;
  • Assessment methods based on social science including economic assessment, cost–benefit analysis and environmental efficiency;
  • Case studies using LCIA:LCA for product systems using energies, environmental assessment for organizations and industries related with energy, and impact assessment for specific countries and for the entire world.

Prof. Dr. Norihiro Itsubo
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • life cycle impact assessment
  • midpoint modeling
  • endpoint modeling
  • socioeconomic impacts
  • LCA for energy systems

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Life Cycle Assessment of Residential Air Conditioners Considering the Benefits of Their Use: A Case Study in Indonesia
Energies 2021, 14(2), 447; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14020447 - 15 Jan 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1173
The global demand for air conditioners (ACs) has more than tripled since 1990, with 1.6 billion units currently in use. With the rapid economic and population growth of countries located in the hottest parts in the world, this trend is likely to continue [...] Read more.
The global demand for air conditioners (ACs) has more than tripled since 1990, with 1.6 billion units currently in use. With the rapid economic and population growth of countries located in the hottest parts in the world, this trend is likely to continue in the future. The aim of this study was to show the benefits of introducing air conditioners with different materials or different technologies such as inverters with high energy-saving performance on the environment and human health in Indonesia. To evaluate the environmental impacts of the different technologies, a cradle-to-grave life cycle assessment (LCA) of air conditioners was conducted using the life-cycle impact assessment method based on endpoint modeling (LIME3). As expected, the use stage has the largest global warming potential (GWP), representing more than 90% of the impact, whereas copper and nickel have the most important impact in terms of resource consumption (about 50%). We found that the impacts are heavily dependent on the country’s energy mix, but reduction can be achieved by introducing better technologies. The integration factors from LIME3 were then applied to estimate the external cost of each model; the results showed that the use stage also has the most influence. Even though the impact of climate change is important, air pollution impact must be seriously considered as its impact was found to be the highest (about 60% of the total impact). The external cost was finally compared to the possible benefits produced by the introduction of air conditioning technologies during their 10-year life cycle. We found that the impacts are twice that of the benefit for the best model (USD 2003 vs. 1064); however, the novelty of this study is that the benefit was also considered. In the future, developing countries should promote AC models with inverters, refrigerants with low global warming impact such as natural refrigerants, and encourage the recycling of units as soon as possible. The energy mix for electricity production is also a key parameter to consider. Full article
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