Keywords: life cycle assessment, LCA, environmental assessment, wastewater treatment, sequencing batch reactors, SBR, CML methodology, India, municipal wastewater, environmental decision making
Life cycle–based environmental assessment of municipal wastewater treatment plant in India
The environmental footprint of wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) can be assessed using a life cycle assessment (LCA) approach. Life cycle impacts are computed according to the CML 2 baseline 2000 methodology. An LCA study was carried out for WWTP treating municipal wastewater. Results show that the construction phase contributes to nearly 1% for the impacts when compared to overall life cycle impact of the plant and hence can be neglected. This work attempts to achieve significantly transparent results using LCA in limited availability of data. Original data was collected and analysed by the authors as part of this study through visits to wastewater treatment plants and on–site surveys. The lack of national life cycle inventories and computerised databases in India limits the wide application of LCA in the context of environmental decision making.