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Trade-offs with longer lifetimes? The case of LED lamps considering product development and energy contexts

Richter, Jessika Luth LU ; Tähkämö, Leena and Dalhammar, Carl LU (2019) In Journal of Cleaner Production 226. p.195-209
Abstract

Longer product lifetimes are promoted by the EU's Circular Economy Action Plan, but incentivising longer lifetimes could also result in trade-offs between different environmental impacts for some product categories. LED lamps are still experiencing improvements in efficacy and material design, which raises questions about whether longer lifetimes are desirable from an overall environmental perspective. Applying a comprehensive life cycle assessment using actual product cases from 2012 to 2017, the research builds on previous product lifetime studies and lighting product research to determine the scenarios in which longer lifetimes are desirable from an overall environmental perspective. The factors explored in the scenarios included... (More)

Longer product lifetimes are promoted by the EU's Circular Economy Action Plan, but incentivising longer lifetimes could also result in trade-offs between different environmental impacts for some product categories. LED lamps are still experiencing improvements in efficacy and material design, which raises questions about whether longer lifetimes are desirable from an overall environmental perspective. Applying a comprehensive life cycle assessment using actual product cases from 2012 to 2017, the research builds on previous product lifetime studies and lighting product research to determine the scenarios in which longer lifetimes are desirable from an overall environmental perspective. The factors explored in the scenarios included improving products in terms of efficiency and dematerialisation as well as decarbonised electricity contexts. The results indicate that product replacement with improved products resulted in environmental benefits compared to keeping longer life products in use, but there are some trade-offs between environmental impacts. However, these trade-offs are minimised in the context of decarbonised electricity mixes and will further decrease as LED lamp technology matures and product development slows. The policy implications of the findings are also discussed.

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Circular economy, Durability, Ecodesign, LED lamps, Life cycle assessment, Product lifetime
in
Journal of Cleaner Production
volume
226
pages
15 pages
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:85064150948
ISSN
0959-6526
DOI
10.1016/j.jclepro.2019.03.331
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
f68525d1-5bd6-41fc-903d-5de75df9ae65
date added to LUP
2019-04-24 12:30:58
date last changed
2019-05-14 04:54:05
@article{f68525d1-5bd6-41fc-903d-5de75df9ae65,
  abstract     = {<p>Longer product lifetimes are promoted by the EU's Circular Economy Action Plan, but incentivising longer lifetimes could also result in trade-offs between different environmental impacts for some product categories. LED lamps are still experiencing improvements in efficacy and material design, which raises questions about whether longer lifetimes are desirable from an overall environmental perspective. Applying a comprehensive life cycle assessment using actual product cases from 2012 to 2017, the research builds on previous product lifetime studies and lighting product research to determine the scenarios in which longer lifetimes are desirable from an overall environmental perspective. The factors explored in the scenarios included improving products in terms of efficiency and dematerialisation as well as decarbonised electricity contexts. The results indicate that product replacement with improved products resulted in environmental benefits compared to keeping longer life products in use, but there are some trade-offs between environmental impacts. However, these trade-offs are minimised in the context of decarbonised electricity mixes and will further decrease as LED lamp technology matures and product development slows. The policy implications of the findings are also discussed.</p>},
  author       = {Richter, Jessika Luth and Tähkämö, Leena and Dalhammar, Carl},
  issn         = {0959-6526},
  keyword      = {Circular economy,Durability,Ecodesign,LED lamps,Life cycle assessment,Product lifetime},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {195--209},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Journal of Cleaner Production},
  title        = {Trade-offs with longer lifetimes? The case of LED lamps considering product development and energy contexts},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2019.03.331},
  volume       = {226},
  year         = {2019},
}