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Title: Comparative environmental evaluation of construction waste management through different waste sorting systems in Hong Kong
Authors: Hossain, MU 
Wu, Z 
Poon, CS 
Keywords: Building construction waste
Environmental evaluation
Life cycle assessment
Waste sorting systems
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: Pergamon Press
Source: Waste management, 2017, v. 69, p. 325-335 How to cite?
Journal: Waste management 
Abstract: This study aimed to compare the environmental performance of building construction waste management (CWM) systems in Hong Kong. Life cycle assessment (LCA) approach was applied to evaluate the performance of CWM systems holistically based on primary data collected from two real building construction sites and secondary data obtained from the literature. Different waste recovery rates were applied based on compositions and material flow to assess the influence on the environmental performance of CWM systems. The system boundary includes all stages of the life cycle of building construction waste (including transportation, sorting, public fill or landfill disposal, recovery and reuse, and transformation and valorization into secondary products). A substitutional LCA approach was applied for capturing the environmental gains due to the utilizations of recovered materials. The results showed that the CWM system by using off-site sorting and direct landfilling resulted in significant environmental impacts. However, a considerable net environmental benefit was observed through an on-site sorting system. For example, about 18-30kg CO2 eq. greenhouse gases (GHGs) emission were induced for managing 1 t of construction waste through off-site sorting and direct landfilling, whereas significant GHGs emission could be potentially avoided (considered as a credit -126 to -182kg CO2 eq.) for an on-site sorting system due to the higher recycling potential. Although the environmental benefits mainly depend on the waste compositions and their sortability, the analysis conducted in this study can serve as guidelines to design an effective and resource-efficient building CWM system.
ISSN: 0956-053X
DOI: 10.1016/j.wasman.2017.07.043
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