Civil Engineering Seminar: Integrated LCCA and LCA of Road and Rail Freight Transport

Civil Engineering Graduate Seminar Thursday – March 19th, 4:00 – 5:00
Room 642 DOW
Presentation by: Sumanth Kalluri
Integrated LCCA and LCA of Road and Rail Freight Transport

Freight transport occurs between nearly any two process steps of a product system and is often of major importance for a product life cycle. The transportation sector accounted for 28% of the total greenhouse gas emission in the US in 2012 and it is forecasted to account for 63 percent of the total growth in global consumption of petroleum and other liquid fuels between 2010 and 2040. For these reasons, it’s essential that the development of new freight transportation lanes and activities takes a holistic approach in the evaluation of alternatives where energy consumption and emissions are minimized throughout the project life cycle. This project takes steps towards that goal by applying the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Life Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA) methodologies for comparing road, rail and road-rail multimodal transportation alternatives for freight shipment.

The main objectives of this study is to analyze all the costs and emissions during phases of construction, operations, maintenance and final salvage or recycling stage of both the infrastructure and the equipment that are used over a variable life time of freight transport process of road and rail modes. The emissions are then converted to cost values (using potential unit costs of emissions) for integration with LCCA for overall assessment.

This presentation will give an introduction to LCA and LCCA and its past applications in transportation sector. The presentation will also talk about a case study for which LCA and LCCA will conducted for movement of ore between a proposed mine and refinery in the Upper Peninsula (Copperwood Mine project) and the movement of refined concentrate between the refinery and Escanaba, MI.