Ecological Footprint Comparison of Biobased PHA Production from Animal Residues
Kettl, K.-H.
Shahzad, K.
Eder, M.
Narodoslawsky, M.
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Kettl K.-H., Shahzad K., Eder M., Narodoslawsky M., 2012, Ecological Footprint Comparison of Biobased PHA Production from Animal Residues, Chemical Engineering Transactions, 29, 439-444.
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Utilization of waste streams is gaining more and more importance to reduce costs at the input side of a process. This affects not only costs, as environmental impacts can be minimized due to utilization of recovered waste streams too. ANIMPOL is an EU funded research project which is focused on the production of biopolymers from animal residues. This report compares conventional plastic production against fermentation of animal residues to polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) which constitutes a group of biobased and biodegradable polyesters. Beside PHA high quality biodiesel and meat and bone meal are produced which improves the economic feasibility of the whole process design. Through hydrolysis of specific residues the substitution of inorganic nitrogen can be achieved (Kettl et al., 2011a).
For comparison of different production scenarios Ecological Footprint evaluation, according to the Sustainable Process Index methodology (Sandholzer et. al., 2005; Narodoslawsky and Krotscheck, 1995) was applied. Sub-process sharp information is available to figure out ecological hotspots within every process step. Ecological optimization potentials as well as production cost reduction are pointed out to address cleaner production already in the process designing phase.
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