Dolganova, I.; Rödl, A.; Bach, V.; Kaltschmitt, M.; Finkbeiner, M., A Review of Life Cycle Assessment Studies of Electric Vehicles with a Focus on Resource Use. Resources 2020, 9, 32 (26 p.) [formato PDF, 877 kB]. Open Access. "Changes in the mobility patterns have evoked concerns about the future availability of certain raw materials necessary to produce alternative drivetrains and related batteries. The goal of this article is to determine if resource use aspects are adequately reflected within life cycle assessment (LCA) case studies of electric vehicles (EV). Overall, 103 LCA studies on electric vehicles from 2009 to 2018 are evaluated regarding their objective, scope, considered impact categories, and assessment methods - with a focus on resource depletion and criticality. The performed analysis shows that only 24 out of 76 EV LCA and 10 out of 27 battery LCA address the issue of resources. The majority of the studies apply one of these methods: CML-IA, ReCiPe, or Eco-Indicator 99. In most studies, EV show higher results for mineral and metal resource depletion than internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEV). The batteries analysis shows that lithium, manganese, copper, and nickel are responsible for the highest burdens. Only few publications approach resource criticality. Although this topic is a serious concern for future mobility, it is currently not comprehensively and consistently considered within LCA studies of electric vehicles. Criticality should be included in the analyses in order to derive results on the potential risks associated with certain resources."

Valuation of plug-in vehicle life-cycle air emissions and oil displacement benefits. PNAS October 4, 2011, vol. 108 no. 40, 16554-16558 (5 p.) [formato PDF, 462 kB]. "We assess the economic value of life-cycle air emissions and oil consumption from conventional vehicles, hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles (PHEVs), and battery electric vehicles in the US. We find that plug-in vehicles may reduce or increase externality costs relative to grid-independent HEVs, depending largely on greenhouse gas and SO2 emissions produced during vehicle charging and battery manufacturing. However, even if future marginal damages from emissions of battery and electricity production drop dramatically, the damage reduction potential of plug-in vehicles remains small compared to ownership cost. As such, to offer a socially efficient approach to emissions and oil consumption reduction, lifetime cost of plug-in vehicles must be competitive with HEVs. Current subsidies intended to encourage sales of plug-in vehicles with large capacity battery packs exceed our externality estimates considerably, and taxes that optimally correct for externality damages would not close the gap in ownership cost. In contrast, HEVs and PHEVs with small battery packs reduce externality damages at low (or no) additional cost over their lifetime. Although large battery packs allow vehicles to travel longer distances using electricity instead of gasoline, large packs are more expensive, heavier, and more emissions intensive to produce, with lower utilization factors, greater charging infrastructure requirements, and life-cycle implications that are more sensitive to uncertain, time-sensitive, and location-specific factors. To reduce air emission and oil dependency impacts from passenger vehicles, strategies to promote adoption of HEVs and PHEVs with small battery packs offer more social benefits per dollar spent." Articolo a pagamento, accesso gratuito dopo 6 mesi dalla data di pubblicazione.

Mikhail Chester and Arpad Horvath (Univ. of California), Life-cycle assessment of high-speed rail: the case of California. Environ. Res. Lett. 5 (2010) 014003, 9 p. [formato PDF, 801 kB]. "The state of California is expected to have significant population growth in the next half-century resulting in additional passenger transportation demand. Planning for a high-speed rail system connecting San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Sacramento as well as many population centers between is now underway. The considerable investment in California high-speed rail has been debated for some time and now includes the energy and environmental tradeoffs. The per-trip energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and other emissions are often compared against the alternatives (automobiles, heavy rail, and aircraft), but typically only considering vehicle operation. An environmental life-cycle assessment of the four modes was created to compare both direct effects of vehicle operation and indirect effects from vehicle, infrastructure, and fuel components. Energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and SO2, CO, NOX, VOC, and PM10 emissions were evaluated. The energy and emission intensities of each mode were normalized per passenger kilometer traveled by using high and low occupancies to illustrate the range in modal environmental performance at potential ridership levels. While high-speed rail has the potential to be the lowest energy consumer and greenhouse gas emitter, appropriate planning and continued investment would be needed to ensure sustained high occupancy. The time to environmental payback is discussed highlighting the ridership conditions where high-speed rail will or will not produce fewer environmental burdens than existing modes. Furthermore, environmental tradeoffs may occur. High-speed rail may lower energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions per trip but can create more SO2 emissions (given the current electricity mix) leading to environmental acidification and human health issues. The significance of life-cycle inventorying is discussed as well as the potential of increasing occupancy on mass transit modes."

Sergio Ulgiati, Riccardo Basosi, High-Speed rail: misleading assessments and false solutions. Life Cycle Assessment and Energy Analysis / Alta Velocità ferroviaria: le valutazioni fuorvianti e false soluzioni. Valutazione del ciclo di vita e analisi energetica. September 2010, 6 p. [formato PDF, 68 kB].

Mikhail Chester and Arpad Horvath (Univ. of California), Life-cycle Energy and Emissions Inventories for Motorcycles, Diesel Automobiles, School Buses, Electric Buses, Chicago Rail, and New York City Rail. (Working Paper UCB-ITS-VWP-2009-2). UC Berkeley Center for Future Urban Transport, Institute of Transportation Studies, 2009, 109 p. [formato PDF, 3,98 MB]. "The development of life-cycle energy and emissions factors for passenger transportation modes is critical for understanding the total environmental costs of travel. Previous life-cycle studies have focused on the automobile given its dominating share of passenger travel and have included only few life-cycle components, typically related to the vehicle (i.e., manufacturing, maintenance, end-of-life) or fuel (i.e., extraction, refining, transport). Chester (2009) provides the first comprehensive environmental life-cycle assessment of not only vehicle and fuel components but also infrastructure components for automobiles, buses, commuter rail systems, and aircraft. Many processes were included for vehicles (manufacturing, active operation, inactive operation, maintenance, insurance), infrastructure (construction, operation, maintenance, parking, insurance), and fuels (production, distribution). The vehicles inventoried were sedans, pickups, SUVs, urban diesel buses, light rail (San Francisco’s Muni Metro and Boston’s Green Line, both electric), heavy rail (San Francisco Bay Area’s BART and Caltrain), and aircraft (small, medium, and large-sized planes are disaggregated). Given the methodological framework in Chester (2009), the question of applicability of these systems to other U.S. modes, and the data availability of other modes, is extended in this study to motorcycles, light duty diesel vehicles, school buses, electric buses, Chicago commuter rail modes, and New York City commuter rail modes."

Kimmo Klemola (Lappeenranta Univ. of Technology), Life-cycle energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions of world cars. February 2006, 5 p. [formato PDF, 138 kB] + database of Energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions data for various car models (Unites States, EU-15, Finland, Sweden)

Ben Lane, Ecolane Transport Consultancy, Life cycle assessment of vehicle fuels and technologies. Final Report, London Borough of Camden, March 2006, 69 p. [formato PDF, 1,01 MB]. (necessaria registrazione gratuita).

Ben Lane, Ecolane Transport Consultancy, Life cycle assessment of vehicle fuels and technologies. Appendices to Final Report, London Borough of Camden, March 2006, 27 p. [formato PDF, 271 KB]. (necessaria registrazione gratuita).

Mark A. Delucchi (University of California, Davis), A multi-country analysis of lifecycle emissions from transportation fuels and motor vehicles. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, May 30, 2005, 205 p. [formato PDF, 875 KB]. (an application of the LEM (Lifecycle Emissions Model).


Malcolm Fergusson (IEEP), End of Life Vehicles (ELV) Directive. An assessment of the current state of implementation by Member States. (IP/A/ENVI/FWC/2006-29), European Parliament, 2007, 69 p. [formato PDF, 4,45 MB].

Studio APAT/ARPA sul fluff di frantumazione degli autoveicoli. (Manuali e linee guida 38/2006), APAT, Roma, 2006, 112 p. [formato PDF, 1,28 MB].

Alessandro Levizzari (Centro Ricerche FIAT), Il fine vita dell'automobile: prospettive tecnologiche e ambientali . Consorzio per l'Area di Ricerca Scientifica e Tecnologica, Trieste, 2001, 112 p. [formato PDF, 1,46 MB].

G. Simeone, G. Tantussi, A. Rosa, An analysis of vehicles recycling. Dipartimento di Ingegneria Meccanica, Nucleare e della Produzione, Facoltà di Ingegneria, Università di Pisa, 2000, 22 p. [formato PDF, 180 KB].

Alison Altschuller, Automobile recycling alternatives: why not? "A look at the possibilities for greener car recycling". Neighborhood Planning for Community Revitalization, Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, University of Minnesota. Minneapolis, May 1997, 34 p. [formato PDF, 201 KB].


Environmental Life-cycle Assessment of Passenger Transportation. An Evaluation of Automobles, Buses, Trains, Aircraft, and High Speed Rail. Mikhail Chester has been developing environmental life-cycle inventories of passenger transportation modes. These analyses are the first comprehensive environmental life-cycle assessments of automobiles, buses, trains, and aircraft. The studies inventory energy consumption and emissions (greenhouse gases and conventional air pollutants) for vehicle, infrastructure, and energy productions components, from material extraction and processing through use and maintenance (well-to-wheel).