Life cycle assessment of bioplastic production from whey protein obtained from dairy residues

Bushra Chalermthai, Adewale Giwa, Jens Ejbye Schmidt, Hanifa Al Blooshi Taher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

With rising environmental concerns on the use of conventional, non-renewably sourced plastics, alternatives such as bioplastics and their impacts on the environment have been studied to replace the use of conventional plastics. In this study, life-cycle-assessment (LCA) was performed on a novel plastic, namely, whey plastic, i.e. plastic produced from whey protein, which is a residue of cheese-making process. Cradle-to-gate analysis was performed using the CML Baseline Method in SimaPro software. The results showed that for each 1000 kg of whey plastic produced, 2900 MJ of energy was consumed, 115.3 kg CO2 was emitted, 82.5 kg NOx was emitted, and it had the lowest global warming potential, freshwater, and marine aquatic toxicities, compared to other conventional plastics. Sensitivity analyses include transportation and land use changes were considered. Copolymer PEGMA was found to be a major contributor of environmental damages, hence replacement or modification of the chemical was suggested for future studies.

Original languageBritish English
Article number100695
JournalBioresource Technology Reports
Volume15
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2021

Keywords

  • Bioplastic
  • Environmental impacts
  • LCA
  • Polymer
  • Whey

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