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Using Transportation to Assess Optimal Value Chain Configuration for Minimal Environmental Impact
Published: 29 October 2012 by Molecular Diversity Preservation International in The 2nd World Sustainability Forum
Molecular Diversity Preservation International, (registering DOI)
Abstract: Transportation of feedstock, product and energy is key to forming the links in any supply chain. In terms of the overall environmental impact the transportation stages can also be a significant contributor. With a particular focus on energy, water and emissions, this paper examines the use of transportation to minimize environmental impacts of the supply chain, using the example of primary aluminium production from bauxite. A "radius of reduction" methodology is demonstrated using transport distance to balance the potential benefit of relocating production or utilising alternative facilities that may have better energy, emissions or resource usage. This approach is shown to be a useful tool for supply chain planning, purchasing or sales strategy, and in a broader assessment of industry potential. The ability to reduce energy and emissions are shown to be highest, while the water usage and costs associated with a carbon tax are less avoidable through relocation.