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  • www.fpinnovations.ca

    Life Cycle Analysis of Hardwood Products from Lumber to Floor Coverings

    September 21st 2010

    Fredericton, NB

    Patrick Lavoie

    Researcher Markets and

    Economics Group

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    Presentation content

    What is Life Cycle

    Analysis (LCA)?

    Example of previous

    work

    Progress on

    hardwood initiative

    Results for hardwood

    lumber and flooring

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    What is Lifecycle Analysis (LCA)?

    Source: OConnor.

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    How is LCA done?

    Source: OConnor. 2009.

    Cradle Gate Grave

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    Typical Steps in LCA

    Establish goal and scope.

    Identify participating manufacturing

    facilities according to ISO 14040.

    Develop questionnaire

    Data collection (LCI)

    Create LCA model

    Assess impacts using LCI data

    Perform sensitivity analysis

    Interpret results, make recommendations

    and draw conclusions

    Write report and submit to peers for review

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    Information needed to perform LCA

    Production and residues

    Consumption

    Species

    Volumes

    Distances

    Energy

    Water

    Nails / screws

    Other inputs (fluids, greases, plastics,

    etc.)

    Emissions

    Air

    Water

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    What does Lifecycle Analysis (LCA) do?

    Differentiation from

    competing products on

    an environmental

    standpoint

    Objective picture of

    manufacturing

    operations and overall

    efficiency

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    Greenhouse gas emissions due to manufacturing

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    LCA limitations

    Quantifies the impact of a product / process across a number of dimensions

    Embodied energy

    Waste

    Air pollution

    Water pollution / Eutrophication / Acidification

    GHG emissions

    Resource use

    Water use

    No global number, weighting and interpretation is necessary

    Does not cover IEQ, toxicology and site specific extraction effects

    Expensive exercise

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    Woods Negative Carbon Footprint A Positive!

    Using LCA, we can calculate carbon balances for wood products.

    CO2 removal

    The C is used to

    make wood

    The C balance here

    is negative

    C is captured /

    sequestered in

    products

    CO2 emissions due

    to harvesting,

    manufacturing,

    transportation

    More C is in the product than was

    emitted to atmosphere in making the

    product - negative Net C

    -

    -

    +

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    OSBs carbon balance

    1,000 ft OSB:

    Stored: - 912 kg

    CO2

    Emissions: + 154

    kg CO2

    Net GHG = -758 kg

    CO2

    = emissions from 1.8

    barrels of oil

    Not included: Emissions avoided by not using some other product.

    This number is even larger.

    Harvesting

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    Environmental footprint for various walls

    This data was generated using the simplified LCA software tool, the Athena EcoCalculator.

    Available for free at www.athenasmi.org

    Ben

    chm

    ark

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    LCA: Wood vs. steel across 7 sample measures

    Source: Calculated using the Athena Impact Estimator

    For a post-and-beam building, wood is the benchmark and shown against typical

    steel (25% recycled content) and a hypothetical steel at 100% recycled content.

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    Embodied energy, typical house

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    FPInnovations involvement in LCA

    Eastern hardwood initiative

    funded by most provincial and

    federal governments

    Numerous projects within

    initiative

    LCA of floor covering (hardwood)

    Hardwood harvesting and

    sawmilling

    Next year: cabinets, mouldings,

    furniture and pallets

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    Progress of LCA project

    Lumber manufacturing

    cradle-to-gate LCA

    Hardwood

    flooring cradle-to-

    grave LCA

    Harvesting

    LCA

    Various floorings,

    comparative cradle-

    to-grave LCA

    Alternate floorings

    cradle-to-grave

    LCAs

    Hardwood

    flooring gate-to-

    gate LCA

    Cabinet

    cradle-to-

    grave LCA

    Furniture

    cradle-to-

    grave LCA

    Millwork

    cradle-to-

    grave LCA

    Pallets

    cradle-to-

    grave LCACompleted

    Aug. 31 2010

    Completed

    Completed for March 2011

  • Cradle-to-Grave Flooring the Product System

    Forestry

    Manufacturing

    End of life

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    Method

    A multi-product system:

    Lumber manufacturing

    Main product: lumber

    Co-products: pulp chips, sawdust, bark

    Flooring manufacturing

    Main product: flooring

    Co-product: hog fuel

    Allocation of environmental burden to products and co-products was done according to ISO standards for LCA (socio-economic option)

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    Method

    Environmental impact indicators were chosen

    according to the ISO standards for building material

    EPDs (ISO 14025 and 21930)

    Chosen impact indicators

    Global warming: greenhouse gas emissions in CO2equivalent

    Acidification: sulphate and nitrate emissions to air and water

    Eutrophication: phosphate, nitrate and sulphate emissions

    to water

    Ozone depletion: ozone depleting substances

    Smog formation: ground level ozone formation due to VOCs

    and NOx emissions

    Non-renewable resource depletion, e.g. fossil fuel

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    Method

    Required minimum sample size: An LCA needs a representative sample with at

    least three companies and at least 5% of total industry production.

    Harvesting 3 harvesting companies from QC, ON and NB

    Sample size: 20% of industry production in 2008.

    Lumber Manufacturing 4 mills from QC and NB.

    Sample size: 10% of industry production in 2007.

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    Green hardwood lumber (cradle gate)

    0%

    10%

    20%

    30%

    40%

    50%

    60%

    70%

    80%

    90%

    100%

    Cl i mat e Aci di f i ca t i on Eut r ophi cat i on Ozone Smog T ot a l ener gy Fossi l non-

    r enewabl e

    Nucl ear non-

    r enewabl e

    Bi omass

    r enewabl e

    Other r enewabl e

    Sawmilling Harvesting

    Note: 76% environmental impacts allocated to green lumber manufacturing. Benchmark graph

    presenting normalized results based on highest score.

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    Hardwood flooring(gate to gate)

    *Note: 95% environmental impacts allocated to pre-finished flooring

    **Impact evaluation method: TRACI 2 and CED for presentation V3.03 / Characterization /

    Excludes infrastructures linked to processes..

    -100%

    -80%

    -60%

    -40%

    -20%

    0%

    20%

    40%

    60%

    80%

    100%

    Climate Acidification Eutrophication Ozone Smog Fossil fuel non-

    renew.

    Flooring (gategate) Moulding Drying Finishing

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    Conclusions

    Wood, in general, is well positionedfrom an environmental standpoint

    LCA is the best tool available to quantify environmental performance of products

    LCA can force companies to re-examine products, processes, inputs, etc. (continuous improvements)

    Initiative underway in 2010/11

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    Questions / comments?

    Pat

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