A review on the impact of mining and mineral processing industries through life cycle assessment

Shahjadi Hisan Farjana, Nazmul Huda*, M. A. Parvez Mahmud, R. Saidur

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper analysed and summarised the significant research outputs published on the environmental impact assessment of mining and mineral processing industries through life cycle assessment. The paper presents valuable insights in identifying the gaps, where should the focus be in the mining and mineral processing industries for a sustainable future. Mining and mineral processing industries have been the key focus of research in many countries due to its increasing sustainability concerns that affect global warming and climate change. Use of heavy equipment that consumes electrical energy, mechanical energy, and an enormous amount of process heat is a key contributor to the overall impacts in the industry. Due to the use of heavy equipment and associated energy consumption, these industrial sectors contribute notably to global warming, human health, ecosystems, and resources. Among the various environmental impact assessment tools which are widely used to identify sustainability indicators, life cycle assessment (LCA) is a well-justified approach among the practitioners and researchers. Though state of the art technological tools and resources are being used now a days, there is still a research gap in identifying the key mining processes which need to be the focus of attention. Renewable energy integration in the mineral processing sector and process heating from green energy sources is becoming the emergent field of research. The review results reveal, the assessment indicators in human health and ecosystems are key factors that are mostly missing in the previous studies which are crucial for people or community living nearby mining area. This review paper identifies the research gaps to the existing literature that can form the base for future research direction in the field of LCA and sustainable energy integration in mining and mineral processing industries.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1200-1217
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Volume231
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2019

Keywords

  • Mining
  • Mineral processing
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Environmental impact
  • Energy integration
  • Renewable energy
  • Sustainability

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