Report: LCA of bioenergy products and projects

Report for the Australian Renewable Energy Agency Method and guidance for undertaking life cycle assistement (LCA) of bioenergy products and projects
October 2016

This method has been developed to support ARENA applicants in undertaking LCA studies of the proposed technologies. The main audience for this document is LCA practitioners. The aim of the LCA method is to:

  • Provide bioenergy proponents with insights into the environmental benefits and risks across the full life cycle of bioenergy products/projects.
  • Guide more effective decision-making by providing a ‘level playing field’ benchmark that enables ARENA to compare projects against conventional generation or fuel options.
  • Support ‘due diligence’ by ensuring the projects supported by ARENA are able to deliver a net benefit in environmental terms e.g. greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint or energy balance.
  • Understand where the innovation gaps/ opportunities/‘‘hot spots’’ lie in terms of the technical maturation of novel pathways and approaches.
  • Enable knowledge sharing, including:
    • Provide a solid basis for communication of project impacts and benefits to the community.
    • Provide analyses with robust comparability to nonbiofuel alternatives that are functionally similar.
    • Provide high quality LCA outputs for independent scrutiny by other LCA experts, academics, nongovernment organisations (NGOs) etc.

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