Refrigeration applications is responsible for approximately 17% of the total electricity and around 8% of greenhouse gas emissions. This study presents a comparative life cycle assessment between two refrigeration systems, the first operating with a traditional fluid and the second with a natural refrigerant. The analysis was performed in accordance with international standards ISO 14040/14044 and adopted the attributional life cycle assessment approach. The functional unit was: ‘the storage of meat products, at the temperature of 0°C for a lifetime of 10 years, in refrigerating cells of a medium city supermarket’. Three different scenarios were analysed to investigate the effect of the energy mix in relation to the use of the machines. Results highlight how the choice of the refrigerating fluid has a higher effect on the environmental performances of the machine with a reduction of approximately 10% in a whole life cycle. Scenario analysis shows how the use of such machines in different countries allows a significant reduction of environmental impacts mostly related to the use phase. Eco-design actions were listed and connected with environmental hot spots specifying the life cycle phases and the environmental indicators involved.

Comparative life cycle assessment of refrigeration systems for food cooling: eco-design actions towards machines with natural refrigerants

Rossi M.
Primo
;
Favi C.;Germani M.;
2021

Abstract

Refrigeration applications is responsible for approximately 17% of the total electricity and around 8% of greenhouse gas emissions. This study presents a comparative life cycle assessment between two refrigeration systems, the first operating with a traditional fluid and the second with a natural refrigerant. The analysis was performed in accordance with international standards ISO 14040/14044 and adopted the attributional life cycle assessment approach. The functional unit was: ‘the storage of meat products, at the temperature of 0°C for a lifetime of 10 years, in refrigerating cells of a medium city supermarket’. Three different scenarios were analysed to investigate the effect of the energy mix in relation to the use of the machines. Results highlight how the choice of the refrigerating fluid has a higher effect on the environmental performances of the machine with a reduction of approximately 10% in a whole life cycle. Scenario analysis shows how the use of such machines in different countries allows a significant reduction of environmental impacts mostly related to the use phase. Eco-design actions were listed and connected with environmental hot spots specifying the life cycle phases and the environmental indicators involved.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11566/292036
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