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Towards better representation of organic agriculture in life cycle assessment

van der Werf, Hayo M.G.; Knudsen, Marie Trydeman and Cederberg, Christel (2020) Towards better representation of organic agriculture in life cycle assessment. Nature Sustainability, 2020, pp. 1-7.

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Document available online at: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41893-020-0489-6


Summary

The environmental effects of agriculture and food are much discussed, with competing claims concerning the impacts of conventional and organic farming. Life cycle assessment (LCA) is the method most widely used to assess environmental impacts of agricultural products. Current LCA methodology and studies tend to favour high-input intensive agricultural systems and misrepresent less intensive agroecological systems such as organic agriculture. LCA assesses agroecological systems inadequately for three reasons: (1) a lack of operational indicators for three key environmental issues; (2) a narrow perspective on functions of agricultural systems; and (3) inconsistent modelling of indirect effects.


EPrint Type:Journal paper
Keywords:organic, conventional, life cycle assessment, LCA, agroecology, intensive, extensive, climate impact, environmental impact, biodiversity, pesticides, soil quality
Agrovoc keywords:
Language
Value
URI
English
organic agriculture
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_15911
English
life cycle analysis
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_9000105
English
environmental impact
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_24420
English
climate change
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_1666
English
agroecology
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_92381
English
intensive agriculture -> intensive farming
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_3906
English
land use change
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_fac4b794
English
conventional farming
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_331393
English
biodiversity
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_33949
English
soil quality
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_a9645d28
English
pesticides
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_5739
Subjects: Soil > Soil quality
Knowledge management > Research methodology and philosophy > Specific methods > Indicators and other value-laden measures
Values, standards and certification > Assessment of impacts and risks
Environmental aspects > Air and water emissions
Environmental aspects > Biodiversity and ecosystem services
Knowledge management > Research methodology and philosophy
Environmental aspects
Research affiliation: Denmark > Organic RDD 4 > ClimOptic
Denmark > Organic RDD 4 > ClimateVeg
Denmark > Organic RDD 4 > SustainOrganic
Denmark > AU - Aarhus University > Faculty of Science and Technology > Department of Agroecology
France > INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique
Sweden > Chalmers University of Technology
DOI:10.1038/s41893-020-0489-6
Deposited By: Knudsen, Researcher Marie Trydeman
ID Code:37787
Deposited On:24 Mar 2020 07:13
Last Modified:24 Mar 2020 07:13
Document Language:English
Status:Published
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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