GONZÁLEZ, P.; VEGA, M.; ZAROR, C.
Towards Life Cycle Sustainability Management (2011) 259-266.
This work reports the life cycle inventory (LCI) of cellulose production in Chile, following a cradle-to-gate approach. Primary data have been used in this study, and cover 100% of pine and eucalyptus cellulose production capacity in Chile. Results show that pine based cellulose presents greater chemical and environmental loads than eucalyptus. Most fossil energy consumption takes place in raw materials transport, chemical manufacturing and limestone kilns in cellulose plants. Effluent discharges are associated with bleaching operations. New forestry practices and pulping and bleaching processes, introduced during the last decade, has led to significant reductions in water consumption, pollutant discharges, and air emissions. However, despite the sharp reduction in chemicals consumption due to process improvements and new technology, greater associated GHG emissions have been recorded as a result of the significant increase in the share of thermoelectric generation experienced during the last decade in Chile.