• Kasper Smetana Christensen
  • Sebastian Moeslund Wael
  • Laura Hilligsø Munk
Recent research has emphasised that there is a need
for more systematic and thorough assessments of
greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in environmental
assessments. Therefore, this thesis aims to explore
potentials for improving the Danish practice of assessing
GHG emissions in environmental assessments
by applying life cycle thinking (LCT). Firstly, this
entails looking at how GHG emissions are assessed
i current Danish EA practice. A text analysis of
102 EA reports revealed that several shortcomings
exist in this regard, including a prevalent use of insufficient
references in determining significance, and
a lack of inclusion of life cycle phases. Due to its
capabilities, e.g. systems perspectives, hotspot analysis,
and so on, this thesis supports application of
LCT and Life cycle assessment (LCA). Based on a
survey with EA practitioners, it can be deduced that
the knowledge and experience regarding LCA application
may be a challenge. This is also apparent
from existing EA reports, as very few include LCT
in the assessments. In order to demonstrate how
the assessment of GHG emissions can benefit from
LCT, the approach is applied to two existing EIA reports.
Based on the results of this experiment, LCT
can contribute with a systems perspective thereby
reducing the risk of overlooking relevant activities
in the assessment. Furthermore, it can contribute
to more well-founded assessments, thus supporting
more accurate significance determinations. However,
it is clear that LCT is not a stand-alone solution to
improving significance determination, and therefore
it is recommended that threshold values for GHG
emissions should be established. Finally, the thesis
includes a discussion which seeks to explore the institutional
setting of GHG emission assessment practice.
It is concluded that elements within the pillars
contribute to both restraining current practice, and
to driving practice forward.
SpecialisationEnvironmental Management and Sustainability Science
Publication date3 Jun 2022
Number of pages129
ID: 471975287