Characterization factors for water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions based on freshwater fish species extinction

Marlia Mohd Hanafiah, Marguerite A. Xenopoulos, Stephan Pfister, Rob S E W Leuven, Mark A J Huijbregts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

60 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Human-induced changes in water consumption and global warming are likely to reduce the species richness of freshwater ecosystems. So far, these impacts have not been addressed in the context of life cycle assessment (LCA). Here, we derived characterization factors for water consumption and global warming based on freshwater fish species loss. Calculation of characterization factors for potential freshwater fish losses from water consumption were estimated using a generic species-river discharge curve for 214 global river basins. We also derived characterization factors for potential freshwater fish species losses per unit of greenhouse gas emission. Based on five global climate scenarios, characterization factors for 63 greenhouse gas emissions were calculated. Depending on the river considered, characterization factors for water consumption can differ up to 3 orders of magnitude. Characterization factors for greenhouse gas emissions can vary up to 5 orders of magnitude, depending on the atmospheric residence time and radiative forcing efficiency of greenhouse gas emissions. An emission of 1 ton of CO2 is expected to cause the same impact on potential fish species disappearance as the water consumption of 10-1000 m3, depending on the river basin considered. Our results make it possible to compare the impact of water consumption with greenhouse gas emissions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5272-5278
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Volume45
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2011

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Gas emissions
Greenhouse gases
Fish
greenhouse gas
extinction
Water
fish
Rivers
Global warming
Catchments
global warming
river basin
freshwater ecosystem
radiative forcing
river discharge
Discharge (fluid mechanics)
Ecosystems
water for consumption
global climate
Life cycle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry

Cite this

Characterization factors for water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions based on freshwater fish species extinction. / Mohd Hanafiah, Marlia; Xenopoulos, Marguerite A.; Pfister, Stephan; Leuven, Rob S E W; Huijbregts, Mark A J.

In: Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 45, No. 12, 15.06.2011, p. 5272-5278.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Mohd Hanafiah, Marlia ; Xenopoulos, Marguerite A. ; Pfister, Stephan ; Leuven, Rob S E W ; Huijbregts, Mark A J. / Characterization factors for water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions based on freshwater fish species extinction. In: Environmental Science and Technology. 2011 ; Vol. 45, No. 12. pp. 5272-5278.
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