1. bookVolume 20 (2017): Issue 1 (November 2017)
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2255-8837
First Published
26 Mar 2010
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
access type Open Access

Assessment of Environmental Impacts of Limestone Quarrying Operations in Thailand

Published Online: 30 Nov 2017
Volume & Issue: Volume 20 (2017) - Issue 1 (November 2017)
Page range: 67 - 83
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2255-8837
First Published
26 Mar 2010
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

Environmental impacts of the mineral extraction have been a public concern. Presently, there is widespread global interest in the area of mining and its sustainability that focused on the need to shift mining industry to a more sustainable framework. The aim of this study was to systematically assess all possible environmental and climate change related impacts of the limestone quarrying operation in Thailand. By considering the life cycle assessment method, the production processes were divided into three phases: raw material extraction, transportation, and comminution. Both IMPACT 2002+ and the Greenhouse Gas Protocol methods were used. Results of IMPACT 2002+ analysis showed that per 1 ton crushed limestone rock production, the total depletion of resource and GHGs emissions were 79.6 MJ and 2.76 kg CO2 eq., respectively. Regarding to the four damage categories, ‘resources’ and ‘climate change’ categories were the two greatest environmental impacts of the limestone rock production. Diesel fuel and electricity consumption in the mining processes were the main causes of those impacts. For climate change, the unit of CO2 eq. was expressed to quantify the total GHGs emissions. Estimated result was about 3.13 kg CO2 eq. per ton limestone rock product. The results obtained by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol were also similar to IMPACT 2002+ method. Electrical energy consumption was considered as the main driver of GHGs, accounting for approximately 46.8 % of total fossil fuel CO2 emissions. A final point should be noted that data uncertainties in environmental assessment over the complete life cycle of limestone quarrying operation have to be carefully considered.

Keywords

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