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FLEXO Magazine : Sustainable Winter 2011
The assessment was conducted in concordance with the principles outlined in ISO 14040 - "Lifecycle assessment- principles and framework," as well as ISO 14044 - "Lifecycle assessment-requirements and guidelines" and the PAS2050 from the British Standards Institute - "Specifications for the measurement of the embodied greenhouse gas emissions in products and services." Analyses considered the GHGs governed by the Kyoto Protocol and addressed by PAS 2050: carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and perfluorocarbons (PFCs). GHG emissions are reported throughout the final docu- ment in metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e). This is the metric used to express the impact of emissions from each individual GHG on a common scale, using each GHG's global warming potential (GWP) value to determine the amount of CO2 emissions that would cause the same amount global warming. Following ISO and PAS 2050 guidelines, the GHG emis- sions associated with manufacturing and delivery of Sun Chemical inks were calculated on a per pound delivered basis. Activity data was supplied by Sun Chemical on its distribution processes as well as obtained from external sources, such as the US Environmental Protection Agency, DEFRA, etc. (Table 1). INK'S CONTRIBUTION PRINT To provide context and direction for printers/converters' sustainability efforts, Sun Chemical completed an evalua- tion of the relative contribution of ink to the overall carbon footprint of various printed products. This review included dozens of GHG LCAs from numerous sources. A variety of print segments were used, including newspapers, corrugated applications, and liquid packaging. The resulting data con- cluded that ink's total contribution to a given printed product's carbon footprint is relatively insignificant, ranging from near negligible to slightly less than 5 percent of the overall impact. FUTURE EXPANSION As mentioned, the gate-to-customer-gate analyses exclude emissions associated with the acquisition and transport of raw materials used in the product manufacturing process. The pilot study on heatset inks clearly demonstrates the sig- nificance of these input materials. As such, Sun Chemical has begun discussions with suppliers to obtain the required data. Sun Chemical customers can request the complete Carbon Footprint Report, which contains specific emissions data, as well as generalized data for products not included in the study by going to www.sunchemical.com/company/ sustainability. Table 1. External data resources. www.flexography.org WINTER 2011 Sustainable FLEXO 9