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5 Impact Assessment

Section 5 presents the results of the life cycle impact assessment based on the CML 3.2 (2007) method for the following impact categories:

  • depletion of abiotic resources;
  • global warming;
  • stratospheric ozone depletion;
  • human toxicity;
  • freshwater and marine aquatic ecotoxicity;
  • terrestrial ecotoxicity;
  • photo-oxidant formation;
  • acidification; and
  • eutrophication.

Whole Life Impacts

Figure 3 to Figure 8 presents the whole-life impact indicator results for each of the lamps assessed in the LCA for the following scenarios:

  • Baseline performance for 2007: 9% recovery and recycling;
  • Scenario 1: 50% recovery and recycling;
  • Scenario 2: 80% recovery and recycling; and 
  • Scenario 3: 100% landfill.

The results indicate that, across all lamps types, increased recovery and recycling levels significantly reduces the contribution made to the human toxicity and ecotoxicity impact categories.  These benefits are more prominent for domestic lamps (LFL, CFLi and CFLe), ranging from around 2% to 45%, when increasing from 0% to 80% for recycling and recovery.  For industrial lamps the benefits relating to human toxicity and ecotoxicity range from around 2% to 35%, when increasing from 0% to 80% for recycling and recovery. 

For all other impact categories, the benefits achieved through increased recycling for the other, such as global warming potential and resource depletion, are relatively small, in the context of the whole life, due to the significance of the use stage.  The benefits (i.e. reductions in impact) range from around 0% to 3%.

The primary driver for the reductions in ecotoxicity impacts is due to the environmental benefits that arise from avoided production of mercury material and the associated emissions of mercury to air from the raw material production process.

The primary driver for the reductions in human toxicity impacts is due to the environmental benefits that arise from avoided production of nickel material, and associated emissions of heavy metals to air (which are non-mercury) from the raw material production process.

Figure 3 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Linear fluorescent lamps (LFL), 35W, T8 (100,000 hours operation)

 

A bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For human toxicity, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity and marine aquatic ecotoxicity benefits ranged from 2-3% for scenarios 1 and 2, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity the benefits ranged from 4% for the baseline scenario to 45% for the 80% recycling (scenario 2), compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.


Figure 4 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLe) 11W: external ballast (100,000 hours operation)

 

A bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, global warming, ozone layer depletion and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For eutrophication, human toxicity and photochemical oxidation scenario 1 and scenario 2 had benefits of between 0.5 and 4% respectively, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For acidification, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity, marine aquatic ecotoxicity and terrestrial ecotoxicity the benefits for the baseline and scenarios 1 and 2 were between 0.5% and 55%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts. The largest benefit of 45% was for scenario 2: 80% recycling for the terrestrial ecotoxicity category. For the same impact category, scenario 1: 50% recycling the benefits were 28%.


Figure 5 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation)

 

A bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, eutrophication, global warming and ozone layer depletion all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For acidification, human toxicity, marine aquatic ecotoxicity and photochemical oxidation scenarios 1 and 2 had benefits between 1 and 5%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity the baseline and scenarios 1 and 2 had benefits more than 1% with scenario 2 of 80% recycling benefiting by 10%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity the baseline and scenarios 1 and 2 had benefits ranging from 4% to 32% for scenario 2: 80% recycling, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.


Figure 6 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – High pressure sodium (HPS) lamps, 150W (100,000 hours operation)

 

A bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For human toxicity, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity and marine aquatic ecotoxicity benefits ranged from 1-3% for scenarios 1 and 2, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

Terrestrial ecotoxicity benefits for the baseline and scenarios 1 and 2 ranged from 5% to 40% for scenario 2: 80% recycling, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.


Figure 7 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Metal Halide (MH) lamps, 400W (100,000 hours operation)

 

A bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity, marine aquatic ecotoxicity and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

Human toxicity benefits for scenarios 1 and 2 were about 1% each, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

Terrestrial ecotoxicity benefits were 3% for the baseline situation, 16% for scenario 1 and 25% for scenario 2, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.


Figure 8 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Mercury Vapour (MV) lamps, 250W (100,000 hours operation)

 

A bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion, human toxicity, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity, marine aquatic ecotoxicity and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

Only terrestrial ecotoxicity showed benefits for the baseline and scenarios 1 and 2 of 3%, 20% and 33% respectively, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.


Impacts of End-of-Life Management

Section 5.2 focuses on end-of-life and the environmental impacts associated with the product stewardship options for end-of-life management. 

The results shown in Figure 9 to Figure 14 indicate that increased levels of recycling and recovery increase the environmental benefits across all impacts indicators.  The negative numbers in the chart indicate an environmental benefit.

The results indicate significant environmental benefits across all impact indicators and all lamps types for increased recovery and recycling levels. 

These benefits, across impact indicators and all lamp types are dominated by the environmental benefits that arise through the avoided production of virgin raw materials, as a result of their displacement by materials recovered for further use by the recycling process.  

As an example the environmental impact results are shown numerically in Table 9 for a CFLi lamp.  These indicate that benefits achieved from changing from 9% to 80% recycling and recovery, over the 100,000 hour operation time, result in savings of approximately 0.8kg CO2 equivalents (which is equivalent to under 0.5% in the context of the whole life cycle).

Table 9 Life Cycle Impact Results – End-of-Life Only – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation)

 

Unit

Baseline: 9% recovery and recycling

Scenario 1: 50% recovery and recycling

Scenario 2: 80% recovery and recycling

Scenario 3: 100% landfill

Abiotic depletion kg Sb eq -0.001 -0.005 -0.009 0.000
Acidification kg SO2 eq -0.005 -0.030 -0.047 0.000
Eutrophication kg PO4 -3 eq 0.000 -0.001 -0.001 0.000
Global warming kg CO2 eq -0.075 -0.538 -0.877 0.027
Ozone layer depletion kg CFC-11 eq 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000
Human toxicity kg 1,4-DB eq -0.111 -0.690 -1.113 0.016
Fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq -0.076 -0.441 -0.708 0.004
Marine aquatic ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq -86.97 -502.16 -805.92 4.16
Terrestrial ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq 0.122 0.018 -0.058 0.145
Photochemical oxidation kg C2H4 -0.0003 -0.0015 -0.0024 0.0000

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Figure 9 Life Cycle Impacts – End-of-Life Only – Linear fluorescent lamps (LFL), 35W, T8 (100,000 hours operation

 

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

In comparison to ‘Scenario 3: 100% landfilling’ which has the highest impact results, the following is evident:

  • The baseline scenario: 9% recycling had an environmental benefit for each of the ten impact categories of between 1% and 9% except for terrestrial ecotoxicity which had an 85% negative impact.
  • Scenario 1: 50% recycling had a benefit of about 60% in each of the ten categories except terrestrial ecotoxicity which had a negative impact of 15%.
  • Scenario 2: 80% recycling had a benefit of 100% for each impact category except terrestrial ecotoxicity which had a benefit of 35%.
  • Scenario 3: 100% landfill had a negative environmental benefit for each of the ten impact categories. For terrestrial ecotoxicity the impact was 100% negative.

Figure 10 Life Cycle Impacts – End-of-Life Only – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLe) 11W: external ballast (100,000 hours operation)

 

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill. 

In comparison to ‘Scenario 3: 100% landfilling’ which has the highest impact results, the following is evident:

  • The baseline scenario: 9% recycling had an environmental benefit for each of the ten impact categories of between 1% and 9% except for terrestrial ecotoxicity which had a 70% negative impact.
  • Scenario 1: 50% recycling had a benefit of about 60% in each of the ten categories except terrestrial ecotoxicity with a 29% environmental benefit.
  • Scenario 2: 80% recycling had a benefit of 100% for each impact category.
  • Scenario 3: 100% landfill had a negligible negative impact in each category except for a 7% negative impact for ozone layer depletion and a 90% negative impact on for terrestrial ecotoxicity.

Figure 11 Life Cycle Impacts – End-of-Life Only – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation)

 

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

In comparison to ‘Scenario 3: 100% landfilling’ which has the highest impact results, the following is evident:

  • The baseline scenario: 9% recycling had an environmental benefit for each of the ten impact categories of between 1% and 10% except for terrestrial ecotoxicity which had an 85% negative impact.
  • Scenario 1: 50% recycling had a benefit of about 60% in each of the ten categories except terrestrial ecotoxicity with a 12% negative impact.
  • Scenario 2: 80% recycling had a benefit of 100% for each impact category except for terrestrial ecology that had a benefit of 40%.
  • Scenario 3: 100% landfill had a negligible to 5% negative impact in each category except for a 10% negative impact for ozone layer depletion and a 100% negative impact on for terrestrial ecotoxicity.

Figure 12 Life Cycle Impacts – End-of-Life Only – High pressure sodium (HPS) lamps, 150W (100,000 hours operation)

 

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, Scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and Scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

In comparison to ‘Scenario 3: 100% landfilling’ which has the highest impact results, the following is evident:

  • The baseline scenario: 9% recycling had an environmental benefit for each of the ten impact categories of between 2% and 10% except for terrestrial ecotoxicity which had an 85% negative impact.
  • Scenario 1: 50% recycling had a benefit of about 60% in each of the ten categories except terrestrial ecotoxicity with a 20% negative impact.
  • Scenario 2: 80% recycling had a benefit of 100% for each impact category except for terrestrial ecology that had a benefit of 25%.
  • Scenario 3: 100% landfill had a negligible to 5% negative impact in each category except for a 10% negative impact for fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity and a 100% negative impact on for terrestrial ecotoxicity.

Figure 13 Life Cycle Impacts – End-of-Life Only – Metal Halide (MH) lamps, 400W (100,000 hours operation)

 

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

In comparison to ‘Scenario 3: 100% landfilling’ which has the highest impact results, the following is evident:

  • The baseline scenario: 9% recycling had an environmental benefit for each of the ten impact categories of between 2% and 10% except for fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity which had a 5% negative impact and terrestrial ecotoxicity which had an 89% negative impact.
  • Scenario 1: 50% recycling had a benefit of about 60% in each of the ten categories except terrestrial ecotoxicity with a 35% negative impact.
  • Scenario 2: 80% recycling had a benefit of 100% for each impact category except for terrestrial ecology that had a benefit of 5%.
  • Scenario 3: 100% landfill had a negligible to 9% negative impact in each category except for a 19% negative impact for fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity and a 100% negative impact on for terrestrial ecotoxicity.

Figure 14 Life Cycle Impacts – End-of-Life Only – Mercury Vapour (MV) lamps, 250W (100,000 hours operation)

 

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, Scenario 1 at 50% recycling, scenario 2 at 80% recycling and Scenario 3 at 100% landfill.

In comparison to ‘Scenario 3: 100% landfilling’ which has the highest impact results, the following is evident:

  • The baseline scenario: 9% recycling had an environmental benefit for each of the ten impact categories of between 2% and 10% except for fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity which had an 80% negative impact and terrestrial ecotoxicity which had an 85% negative impact.
  • Scenario 1: 50% recycling had a benefit of about 60% in each of the ten categories except for fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity that had a 9% benefit and terrestrial ecotoxicity with a 12% negative impact.
  • Scenario 2: 80% recycling had a benefit of 100% for each impact category except for fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity that had about a 73% benefit and terrestrial ecology that had a benefit of 35%.
  • Scenario 3: 100% landfill had a negligible to about 11% negative impact in each category except for fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity and terrestrial ecotoxicity that both had a 100% negative impact.


Impacts of Reduced Mercury Levels in Lamps

Whole Life Results: Reduced Mercury Levels

The whole-life results shown in Figure 15 to Figure 20 indicate that with a 20% reduction in lamp mercury content along with increased levels of recycling and recovery, then marginally reduced impacts arise.  

The influence of reduced mercury levels of 20% provides an almost negligible reduction in environmental impact compared to typical mercury levels across all impact indicators, with the exception of terrestrial ecotoxicity impacts, as shown in Table 10, which gives a reduction of around 6% of the impact at an 80% recycling level (and 2% reduction at a rate of 9% recycling and recovery).   

The benefits for terrestrial ecotoxicity impacts are almost entirely driven by the reduced need to manufacture as much mercury for the lamp.  This reduction in impact results from a reduction in release of mercury to air that is associated with the mercury raw material manufacturing process.  Also smaller reductions occur at end-of-life landfill disposal which is primarily driven by a reduction in emissions of mercury to soil and to air, which results from reduced levels of mercury entering the landfill. 

Table 10 Life Cycle Impact Results – Whole life – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation)

 

Unit Baseline: 9% recovery and recycling
Typical Mercury Level
Baseline: 9% recovery and recycling
Low Mercury Level
Scenario 2: 80% recovery and recycling
Typical Mercury Level
Scenario 5: 80% recovery and recycling
Low Mercury Level
Abiotic depletion kg Sb eq 4.03 4.03 4.02 4.02
Acidification kg SO2 eq 2.21 2.21 2.17 2.17
Eutrophication kg PO4 -3 eq 0.15 0.15 0.15 0.15
Global warming kg CO2 eq 516.9 516.9 516.1 516.1
Ozone layer depletion kg CFC-11 eq 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Human toxicity kg 1,4-DB eq 68.96 68.95 67.95 67.95
Fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq 7.53 7.53 6.90 6.90
Marine aquatic ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq 15,821 15,819 15,102 15,101
Terrestrial ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq 0.62 0.58 0.44 0.43
Photochemical oxidation kg C2H4 0.19 0.19 0.18 0.18

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

 End-of-Life Results: Reduced Mercury Levels

Section 5.3.2 focuses on end-of-life and the environmental impacts associated with the product stewardship options for end-of-life management. 

Table 11 shows that the influence of reduced mercury levels of 20% provides an almost negligible reduction in environmental impact compared to typical mercury levels across all impact indicators, with the exception of terrestrial ecotoxicity impacts, which gives a reduction of around 20% of total impacts for a recycling and recovery rate of both 9% and 80%.  This reduction in impact results from a direct reduction in emissions of mercury to air and to soil from landfill disposal due to a reduced mass of mercury being disposed per lamp. 

Table 11    Life Cycle Impact Results – End-of-Life Only – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation)

 

Unit Baseline: 9% recovery and recycling
Typical Mercury Level
Baseline: 9% recovery and recycling
Low Mercury Level
Scenario 2: 80% recovery and recycling
Typical Mercury Level
Scenario 5: 80% recovery and recycling
Low Mercury Level
Abiotic depletion kg Sb eq -0.001 -0.001 -0.009 -0.009
Acidification kg SO2 eq -0.005 -0.005 -0.047 -0.047
Eutrophication kg PO4 -3 eq 0.000 0.000 -0.001 -0.001
Global warming kg CO2 eq -0.075 -0.075 -0.877 -0.877
Ozone layer depletion kg CFC-11 eq 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000
Human toxicity kg 1,4-DB eq -0.111 -0.112 -1.113 -1.110
Fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq -0.076 -0.077 -0.708 -0.708
Marine aquatic ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq -87.0 -87.2 -805.9 -805.1
Terrestrial ecotoxicity kg 1,4-DB eq 0.122 0.098 -0.058 -0.047
Photochemical oxidation kg C2H4 0.000 0.000 -0.002 -0.002

Note: a negative number represents an environmental benefit.

Figure 15  Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Linear fluorescent lamps (LFL), 35W, T8 (100,000 hours operation) – 20% Reduced Mercury

 

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 4 at 50% recycling, scenario 5 at 80% recycling and scenario 6 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For human toxicity, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity and marine aquatic ecotoxicity benefits ranged from 1-3% for scenarios 4 and 5, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity the benefits ranged from 6% at the baseline 9% recycling, 17% for scenario 4 and 26% for 80% recycling (scenario 5), compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

Figure 16   Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLe) 11W: external ballast (100,000 hours operation) – 20% Reduced Mercury

 

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: Baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 4 at 50% recycling, scenario 5 at 80% recycling and scenario 6 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, global warming and ozone layer depletion all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For acidification, eutrophication, human toxicity and photochemical oxidation the benefits ranged from 1-5% for scenarios 4 and 5, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity, baseline had benefits of 3%, scenario 4 had benefits of 13% and scenario 5 had benefits of 21%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For marine aquatic ecotoxicity, baseline had benefits of 1-2%, scenario 4 had benefits of 7% and scenario 5 had benefits of 11%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity, the baseline had benefits of 5%, scenario 4 had benefits of about 25% and scenario 5 had benefits of 42%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

Figure 17 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation) – 20% Reduced Mercury

 

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, scenario 4 at 50% recycling, scenario 5 at 80% recycling and scenario 6 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, eutrophication, global warming and ozone layer depletion scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For acidification, human toxicity and photochemical oxidation the benefits ranged from 1-3% for scenarios 4 and 5, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity, baseline had benefits of 1%, scenario 4 had benefits of 6% and scenario 5 had benefits of 10%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For marine aquatic ecotoxicity, baseline had benefits of 1%, scenario 4 had benefits of about 4% and scenario 5 had benefits of 5%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity, baseline had benefits of 4%, scenario 4 had benefits of 17% and scenario 5 had benefits of 27%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

Figure 18 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – High pressure sodium (HPS) lamps, 150W (100,000 hours operation) – 20% Reduced Mercury

 

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, Scenario 4 at 50% recycling, scenario 5 at 80% recycling and Scenario 6 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For human toxicity, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity and marine aquatic ecotoxicity the benefits in scenarios 4 and 5 were 1-4%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity, the baseline of 9% recycling had benefits of 4%, scenario 4 22% and scenario 5 had benefits of 35%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

Figure 19 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Metal Halide (MH) lamps, 400W (100,000 hours operation) – 20% Reduced Mercury

 

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, Scenario 4 at 50% recycling, scenario 5 at 80% recycling and Scenario 6 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion, human toxicity, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity, marine aquatic ecotoxicity and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity, the baseline of 9% recycling had benefits of 3%, scenario 4 it had benefits of 14%, and in scenario 5 it had benefits of 22%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

Figure 20 Life Cycle Impacts – Whole life – Mercury Vapour (MV) lamps, 250W (100,000 hours operation) – 20% Reduced Mercury

 

Illustrated as a bar-graph split into 10 impact categories covering four situations: baseline at 9% recycling, Scenario 4 at 50% recycling, scenario 5 at 80% recycling and Scenario 6 at 100% landfill.

For abiotic depletion, acidification, eutrophication, global warming, ozone layer depletion, human toxicity, fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity, marine aquatic ecotoxicity and photochemical oxidation all scenarios had no or negligible benefit when compared to baseline results.

For terrestrial ecotoxicity, the baseline of 9% recycling had benefits of 4%, scenario 4 it had benefits of about 20%, and for scenario 5 it had benefits of 31%, compared to 100% landfilling which has the highest impacts.

5.4 Contribution of Mercury to Human Toxicity Impacts

5.4.1 Whole Life Results: Contribution of Mercury to Human Toxicity Impacts

The results in Table 12 and Table 13 show the contribution of the most significant substances to human toxicity impacts over the complete life cycle for the six lamps assessed.  The results indicate that mercury emissions contribute under 0.5% of the total impacts of human toxicity. 

The results show the most significant contributing substances relate to poly aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) to air (contributing generally around 50% of impacts), non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOC) to air and other (non-mercury) heavy metals that are released to air and to water. 

Primarily, the contributions to human toxicity arise from generation of electricity in the use phase, resulting from combustion of gas and coal which release PAH and NMVOC to air with the use phase contributing around 85% to 95% of the total life cycle.  This is the same across all lamp types, with the slight exception for the integrated CFL.  For CFLi lamps the manufacturing phase results in additional human toxicity impacts resulting from the production of electronics and the use phase contributes around 65% from emissions of PAH and NMVOC to air from electricity generation. 

The results indicate that increased levels of recovery and recycling reduce total human toxicity impacts and also reduce the levels of mercury release to the environment.  The results indicate that benefits achieved from changing from 9% to 80% recycling and recovery result in reduction of around 1.5% for human toxicity impacts over the life cycle.

The Impact 2002+ (2003) assessment method also ranks the mercury contribution at a similar level for human health impacts.

The Impact 2002 method also confirms the use stage as being dominant, around 80% of total impacts.  The generation of electricity is the primary contributory process; with the main substance contributions being nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulphur oxides (SOx) and particulate matter (PM) released to air. 

The TRACI method (Bare, 2003) also indicates similar results; however this is dependent on the impact category selected.  It should be noted that the TRACI method considers mercury for non-carcinogenic impacts and ecotoxicity impacts, but is not characterised in relation to other impact categories.  For respiratory effects, very similar results are shown.  For carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic impacts the TRACI method indicates that heavy metals (but excluding mercury) are the primary contributory substances, from both generation of electricity in the use phase and some from raw material manufacture.  For CFLi lamps, the method also identifies the production of electronics as being a significant contributor (representing around 70% for carcinogenic impacts and around 85% for non- carcinogenic impacts).


Table 12 Human Toxicity Impacts – Whole life – Substance Contributions (100,000 hours operation for baseline scenario of 9% recycling)

Substance Fate Unit 1. Linear fluorescent lamp (LFL) 2. Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) 3. Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) 4. High pressure sodium (HPS) 5. Metal Halide (MH) ) 6. Mercury Vapour (MV) )
Total of all compartments   kg 1,4-DB eq 87.6 28.6 69.0 348.8 903.8 561.3
Remaining substances   kg 1,4-DB eq 0.4 0.1 0.9 1.5 3.8 2.3
PAH Air kg 1,4-DB eq 46.1 14.0 27.9 187.3 499.0 311.7
NMVOC Air kg 1,4-DB eq 13.2 4.2 8.3 55.7 148.5 92.9
Arsenic Air kg 1,4-DB eq 4.4 1.5 11.0 22.0 43.3 24.0
Chromium VI Air kg 1,4-DB eq 4.1 1.4 3.2 12.6 32.0 20.1
Nickel Air kg 1,4-DB eq 3.2 1.4 4.0 13.0 31.3 19.1
Benzene Air kg 1,4-DB eq 3.1 1.0 2.0 12.7 33.9 21.1
Selenium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 2.2 0.7 1.5 9.1 24.1 15.0
Nitrogen oxides Air kg 1,4-DB eq 2.1 0.7 1.3 8.5 22.4 14.1
Selenium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 1.5 0.5 1.1 3.4 8.5 5.4
Vanadium, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq 1.4 0.5 1.1 2.7 6.7 4.3
Hydrogen fluoride Air kg 1,4-DB eq 1.2 0.4 0.7 4.7 12.5 7.8
Thallium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 1.1 0.4 0.7 1.8 4.5 2.9
Vanadium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.1 0.3 0.8 2.1 1.4
PAH Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.1 0.3 1.2 3.3 2.1
Copper Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.1 0.6 1.6 3.8 2.3
Cadmium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.1 1.4 2.2 3.9 2.0
Barium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.1 0.2 1.2 3.2 2.0
Barium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.1 0.3 1.0 2.8 1.7
Barium Soil kg 1,4-DB eq 0.2 0.1 0.1 1.0 2.6 1.6
Molybdenum Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.2 0.1 0.2 0.4 1.0 0.6
Sulfur dioxide Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.2 0.1 0.1 0.8 2.0 1.2
Particulates, < 2.5 um Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.0 0.1 0.5 1.4 0.9
Chromium Soil kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.0 0.1 0.5 1.4 0.9
Beryllium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.0 0.1 0.2 0.5 0.4
Arsenic, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.0 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.2
Dioxins Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.0 0.1 0.5 1.2 0.8
Mercury Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.5 1.0 0.7

Table 13 Human Toxicity Impacts – Whole life – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation)

Substance Fate Unit Baseline: 9% recovery and recycling Scenario 1: 50% recovery and recycling Scenario 2: 80% recovery and recycling Scenario 3: 100% landfill
Total of all compartments   kg 1,4-DB eq 69.0 68.4 68.0 69.1
Remaining substances   kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3
PAH Air kg 1,4-DB eq 27.9 27.9 27.9 27.9
Arsenic Air kg 1,4-DB eq 11.0 10.9 10.9 11.0
NMVOC Air kg 1,4-DB eq 8.3 8.2 8.2 8.3
Nickel Air kg 1,4-DB eq 4.0 3.9 3.7 4.1
Chromium VI Air kg 1,4-DB eq 3.2 3.3 3.3 3.2
Benzene Air kg 1,4-DB eq 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0
Selenium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.5
Cadmium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 1.4 1.4 1.4 1.4
Nitrogen oxides Air kg 1,4-DB eq 1.3 1.3 1.3 1.3
Selenium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 1.1 1.1 1.1 1.1
Vanadium, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq 1.1 1.1 1.1 1.1
Hydrogen fluoride Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7
Thallium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.7 0.7 0.7 0.7
Cobalt Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.7 0.5 0.3 0.8
Copper Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.6 0.6 0.5 0.6
Benzene Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5
Vanadium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3
Barium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3
PAH Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3
Nickel, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2
Molybdenum Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2
Barium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.2
Antimony Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Sulfur dioxide Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Barium Soil kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Dioxins Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Ethylene oxide Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Beryllium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Arsenic, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Particulates, < 2.5 um Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Lead Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1
Mercury Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1

5.4.2 End-of-Life Results: Contribution of Mercury to Human Toxicity Impacts

Section 5.4.2 focuses on end-of-life and the environmental impacts associated with the product stewardship options for end-of-life management. 

The results in Table 14 and Table 15 show the contribution of the most significant substances to human toxicity impacts over the complete life cycle for the six lamps assessed. 

When looking at end-of-life only emissions arise from disposal causing both detrimental impacts (e.g. heavy metals emissions to air, water and soil) and also environmental benefits of the avoided emissions that arise through the avoided production of virgin raw materials, as a result of their displacement by materials recovered for further use by the recycling process. 

Considering only the detrimental impacts at end-of-life, the results show that mercury emissions from landfill contribute around 25% for LFLs and CFLs, while for industrial lamp types (HPS, MH and MV) mercury emissions from landfill contribute around 90% of the total impacts for human toxicity.  

The results indicate that increased levels of recovery and recycling reduce total human toxicity impacts that result from mercury emissions from landfill.  However, the primary driver for reducing emissions results from environmental benefits of the avoided emissions that arise through the avoided production of virgin raw materials, as a result of their displacement by materials recovered for further use by the recycling process.  These benefits mainly arise from avoided production from metals (nickel, brass and aluminium) in the lamps. 

Table 14 Human Toxicity Impacts – End-of-Life – Substance Contributions (100,000 hours operation for baseline of 9% recycling)

Substance Fate Unit 1. Linear fluorescent lamp (LFL) 2. Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) 3. Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) 4. High pressure sodium (HPS) 5. Metal Halide (MH) ) 6. Mercury Vapour (MV) )
Total of all compartments   kg 1,4-DB eq -0.1435 -0.1064 -0.1107 -1.1324 -1.0159 -0.1625
Remaining substances   kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0005 -0.0519 -0.0591 -0.0198 -0.0176 -0.0027
PAH Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.1550 -0.0024 -0.0016 -0.0059 -0.0055 0.0000
Arsenic Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0060 -0.0082 -0.0095 -0.8237 -0.7789 -0.1606
Vanadium, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0055 -0.0002 -0.0001 -0.0003 -0.0002 0.0001
Barite Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0032 -0.0012 -0.0015 -0.0017 -0.0027 -0.0014
Selenium Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0016 -0.0005 -0.0007 -0.0003 -0.0003 -0.0002
Cadmium Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0008 -0.0008 -0.0009 -0.1146 -0.1083 -0.0224
Sodium dichromate Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0006 0.0000 0.0000 -0.0003 -0.0003 -0.0001
Hydrogen fluoride Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0006 -0.0001 -0.0001 -0.0001 -0.0002 -0.0001
Nickel Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0003 -0.0365 -0.0407 -0.1577 -0.1486 -0.0305
NMVOC Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0003 -0.0028 -0.0041 -0.0021 -0.0019 -0.0021
Thallium Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0002 -0.0001 -0.0001 -0.0002 -0.0002 -0.0001
Nitrogen oxides Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0002 -0.0003 -0.0003 -0.0005 -0.0005 -0.0002
Copper Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.0002 -0.0036 -0.0040 -0.0319 -0.0301 -0.0062
Barium Soil kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0002 0.0000 0.0001 0.0000 0.0000 0.0000
Vanadium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0002 -0.0010 -0.0011 -0.0016 -0.0014 -0.0006
Nickel, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0006 -0.0054 -0.0058 -0.0018 -0.0015 -0.0001
Benzene Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0006 0.0000 -0.0001 -0.0004 -0.0002 0.0000
Barium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0010 0.0001 0.0003 -0.0003 -0.0001 -0.0002
PAH Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0012 0.0004 0.0009 0.0003 0.0007 0.0007
Mercury Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0013 0.0006 0.0011 0.0084 0.0134 0.0093
Barium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0023 0.0005 0.0008 0.0006 0.0010 0.0000
Mercury Soil kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0024 0.0011 0.0020 0.0147 0.0236 0.0163
Mercury Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0052 0.0011 0.0043 0.0360 0.0661 0.0359
Chromium VI Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.0165 0.0049 0.0099 -0.0292 -0.0221 0.0025

Table 15 Human Toxicity Impacts – End-of-Life – Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLi) 20W: integral ballast (100,000 hours operation)

Substance Fate Unit Baseline: 9% recovery and recycling Scenario 1: 50% recovery and recycling Scenario 2: 80% recovery and recycling Scenario 3: 100% landfill
Total of all compartments   kg 1,4-DB eq -0.111 -0.690 -1.113 0.016
Remaining substances   kg 1,4-DB eq -0.001 -0.006 -0.009 0.000
Cobalt Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.054 -0.302 -0.483 0.000
Nickel Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.041 -0.227 -0.363 0.000
Arsenic Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.009 -0.053 -0.085 0.000
Nickel, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.006 -0.032 -0.052 0.000
NMVOC Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.004 -0.027 -0.044 0.001
Copper Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.004 -0.023 -0.037 0.000
Antimony Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.003 -0.019 -0.030 0.000
PAH Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.002 -0.019 -0.031 0.002
Barite Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.002 -0.008 -0.013 0.000
Vanadium Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.001 -0.006 -0.010 0.000
Cadmium Air kg 1,4-DB eq -0.001 -0.005 -0.009 0.000
Selenium Water kg 1,4-DB eq -0.001 -0.004 -0.007 0.000
Cobalt Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.000 -0.003 -0.004 0.000
Sulfur dioxide Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.000 -0.002 -0.004 0.000
Nitrogen oxides Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.000 -0.003 -0.005 0.000
Hydrogen fluoride Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.000 -0.001 -0.001 0.000
Vanadium, ion Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.000 -0.001 -0.001 0.000
Barium Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.000 -0.002 -0.003 0.001
Barium Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.001 0.000 0.000 0.001
PAH Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.001 0.003 0.004 0.000
Mercury Water kg 1,4-DB eq 0.001 0.001 0.000 0.001
Mercury Soil kg 1,4-DB eq 0.002 0.001 0.000 0.002
Mercury Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.004 -0.007 -0.016 0.007
Chromium VI Air kg 1,4-DB eq 0.010 0.055 0.088 0.000