Integral environmental impact assessment of milk production in the Netherlands
08 / 2005 - 08 / 2009
[Introduction]: In the Netherlands, a systematic, integrated assessment of the environmental impact of agriculture production systems, such as milk production, is underexposed. In recent years Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) has proved to be a useful tool to assess the integrated environmental impact of agricultural production systems. The aim of this study is to gain insight into the integral environmental impact of milk production using Life Cycle Assessment by; 1. Comparing integral environmental impact of various milk production systems 2. Analysing the effect of choice of allocation on final LCA results 3. Analysing the contribution of milk production on national level [Results]: To reduce the environmental impact of animal production, we need effective indicators. For the impact categories land use, energy use, acidification, eutrophication and climate change, effective indicators have already been formulated and evaluated on their effectiveness. Indicators were derived from three methodologies; Life Cycle Assessment; Ecological Footprint and input-output accounting (Thomassen and de Boer, 2005). To give a good insight into the environmental impact of a dairy production system, besides input-output accounting indicators, LCA indicators are required.