Design of biobased supply chains on a life cycle basis: A bi-objective optimization model and a case study of biobased polyethylene terephthalate (PET)

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Abstract

Bioplastics are considered a sustainable alternative to (partly) substitute fossil-based plastics. Nevertheless, it is still uncertain if the use of biomass for the production of bioplastics can mitigate the environmental impact of fossil-based plastics and simultaneously provide economic benefits. An optimization model is proposed to design biobased supply chain networks that account for economic (total costs) and environmental (greenhouse gas emissions) criteria. Life cycle costing and life cycle assessment were used to evaluate the economic and environmental costs of the biobased polyethylene terephthalate (PET) production using sugar beet and wheat as feedstock. The 100% biobased PET production evidenced higher economic and environmental costs than the 30% biobased PET production. The feedstock selection played a key role, whereas the use of wheat for both 30% and 100% biobased PET had the highest costs and greenhouse gas emissions. It is highlighted that the economic performance of the biobased terephthalic acid (PTA) production, the feedstock selection (sugar beet), and the carbon tax scenario (>100 €/t CO2) are key parameters for designing a sustainable biobased PET supply chain.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
JournalSustainable Production and Consumption
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jan 2022

Keywords

  • BIOMASS
  • CHALLENGES
  • CHEMICALS
  • COST
  • Carbon pricing policies
  • ETHANOL
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Life cycle costing
  • Mixed-integer programming
  • Sugar beet
  • Wheat

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