BibTex format

author = {Marmiroli, B and Rigamonti, L and Brito-Parada, PR},
doi = {10.1007/s11367-021-02005-w},
journal = {The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment},
pages = {62--81},
title = {Life Cycle Assessment in mineral processing – a review of the role of flotation},
url = {},
volume = {27},
year = {2021}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - PurposeThe aim of this literature review is to investigate the role of the beneficiation stage in the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of metals and minerals with a focus on the flotation process.MethodsThe systematic literature search included LCA studies comprising the beneficiation stage in their system boundaries and resulted in 29 studies that met the criteria requirements and were analysed. First, the system boundaries are investigated, along with the level of detail in the description of the sub-processes (e.g. flotation) and data granularity. Then, the life cycle inventories are scrutinised: data transparency and the relation between system granularity and data availability is commented. Of particular relevance, the way in which the functional unit is dealt with is examined. Finally, studies impact assessments are compared and discussed, and key parameters are highlighted.Results and discussionFor system boundaries, beneficiation is generally embedded into the mining stage. Even when described on its own, important sub-processes (e.g. flotation) are not considered, except for eight cases analysed. Functional unit definition is hindered by the output of the system being an intermediate product. Indeed, most studies use a declared functional unit but fail to provide its relevant characteristics, which is essential for a correct interpretation of results and for comparisons. Most studies rely on secondary data, not always presented transparently, to describe beneficiation. Results on the role of beneficiation in the metal value chain environmental impacts are conflicting, partly because of its site dependency. Site-dependent parameters found to be determining are ore grade, energy mix, mining technique, concentrate grade and ore mineralogy.ConclusionsThe flotation process, and more generally the beneficiation stage, is typically overlooked in LCA studies despite its growing relevance. Beneficiation not being assessed as a standalone stage, detailed in its subprocess
AU - Marmiroli,B
AU - Rigamonti,L
AU - Brito-Parada,PR
DO - 10.1007/s11367-021-02005-w
EP - 81
PY - 2021///
SN - 0948-3349
SP - 62
TI - Life Cycle Assessment in mineral processing – a review of the role of flotation
T2 - The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment
UR -
UR -
UR -
VL - 27
ER -