Assessing environmental enhancement scenarios in a petrochemical port: A comprehensive comparison using a hybrid LCA-GRM model

Samaneh Fayyaz, Mazaher Moeinaddini, Sharareh Pourebrahim, Benyamin Khoshnevisan, Ali Kazemi, Seyed Pendar Toufighi, Mias Sommer Schjønberg, Morten Birkved

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This study addresses a critical gap in environmental assessments by focusing on petrochemical port operations, an area traditionally overlooked in life cycle assessments (LCAs) of material supply chains. This study investigates various methods of loading for 22 petrochemical products i.e., gas, liquid, container, tanker, and bulk loading; at the biggest petrochemical port in the world situated in the Persian Gulf with a loading capacity of 35 MMt/yr. Twelve scenarios were developed to enhance environmental efficiency based on hotspots defined in LCAs of port loading operations of petrochemicals in their present state. Scenarios 1 through 5 consider electricity savings of 2%–10%, scenarios 6 through 10 consider renewable photovoltaic energy mix of 10%–50%, and scenarios 11 and 12 consider no flaring and rejection of ash waste from ships.

To prioritize these scenarios based on environmental efficiency gains, a comprehensive LCA-GRM hybrid model has been introduced. This integrated model combines life cycle assessment and gray relational modeling, providing a robust framework for evaluating and ranking the scenarios. The Best Worst Method (BWM) is implemented for weighing multiple environmental criteria, contributing to informed decision-making.

The findings underscore the substantial impact of electricity consumption and gas flaring in petrochemical port operations, prompting the identification of the 'no flaring' scenario (S11) as the most preferred option. Implementing this scenario could lead to significant reductions in climate change impacts (22.14%), ozone formation and human health impacts (16.73%), and photochemical oxidant formation (15.98%).

The study's significance lies in emphasizing the environmental implications of port operations and urging policymakers to integrate port impacts into broader supply chain assessments. We advocate for targeted strategies to enhance electricity efficiency and reduce gas flaring in petrochemical ports, aligning with global sustainability goals. The Comprehensive LCA-GRM hybrid approach offers valuable insights for decision-makers involved in the global transportation of goods through ports.
TidsskriftJournal of Cleaner Production
StatusUdgivet - 15. mar. 2024


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