Recycling Waste Cooking Oil into Biodiesel: A Life Cycle Assessment
Volume 10, Number 4, June 2014 - Paper 2 - pp. 347-356
M. RIPA, C. BUONAURIO, S. MELLINO, G. FIORENTINO, S. ULGIATIDepartment of Science and Technology, Parthenope University of Naples, ITALY
(Received on Sept.05, 2013, revised on Oct.10 and Oct.18, 2013, and finally on Jan.23, 2014)
Production activities are always accompanied by energy consumption and waste generation; the basic environmental issue in industrial and developing countries worldwide still is how to best identify and manage waste streams while at same time recovering their energy content. In this paper, starting from the evidence that the conventional disposal of waste cooking oil (WCO) causes severe environmental problems, a new way to recover and reuse this oil is explored. Collection of cooking oils and fats from residential and commercial facilities and treatment to biofuel is investigated as a case study in the Campania Region (Italy). There have been recent developments in recycling techniques for conversion of WCO into biodiesel: in such a way, environmental damage can be minimized by also meeting the need for alternative fuels. The aim of this study is dual. Firstly, it assesses the environmental effectiveness of biodiesel production from WCO, secondly, it identifies hotspots throughout the entire biodiesel production chain and suggests future improvements.
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