A lifecycle assessment and economic valuation of recycling

JC Powell, AL Craighill, JP Parfitt, RK Turner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Citations (Scopus)


The financial costs of recycling schemes fail to account for external costs and benefits such as environmental pollution, road congestion and accidents. This paper compares the environmental and social impacts of a kerbside collection scheme for recyclable household waste, with a bring scheme, using lifecycle assessment. Economic valuation is used to assign relative weights to these impacts. A second comparison examines the relative external costs of recycling and landfill disposal of waste. The results show that the kerbside collection scheme has a lower external cost than the bring scheme, but this is of less importance than the benefits to be gained within the manufacturing system by using secondary materials. It is concluded that the combination of lifecycle assessment and economic valuation is an effective means of evaluation to direct the sustainable development of waste management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-112
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Environmental Planning and Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1996

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