Environmental performance of construction waste: Comparing three scenarios from a case study in Catalonia, Spain.Waste Manag. 2010 Apr; 30(4):646-54.WM
The main objective of this paper is to evaluate environmental impacts of construction wastes in terms of the LIFE 98 ENV/E/351 project. Construction wastes are classified in accordance with the Life Program Environment Directive of the European Commission. Three different scenarios to current waste management from a case study in Catalonia (Spain) have been compared: landfilling, recycling and incineration, and these scenarios were evaluated by means of Life Cycle Assessment. The recommendations of the Catalan Waste Catalogue and the European Waste Catalogue have been taken into account. Also, the influence of transport has been evaluated. Results show that in terms of the Global Warming Potential, the most environmentally friendly treatment was recycling, followed by incineration and lastly landfilling. According to the influence of treatment plants location on the GWP indicator, we observe that incineration and recycling of construction wastes are better than landfilling, even for long distances from the building site to the plants. This is true for most wastes except for the stony types, than should be recycled close to the building site. In summary, data from construction waste of a Catalan case study was evaluated using the well established method of LCA to determine the environmental impacts.