Choice of method or choice of results?

One of the first projects to publish results from the first phase of the Swedish Energy Agency and f3 collaborative research program Renewable transportation fuels and systems (samverkansprogrammet F√∂rnybara drivmedel och system) was The method’s influence on climate impact assessment of biofuels and other uses of forest biomass. The project report was published already in 2016 and the results have been presented at a number of events.

In July 2018, an article prepared by participants in the project was published in The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment. It is titled The influence of system boundaries and baseline in climate impact assessment of forest products, and aims to show the potential outcomes of different methodological choices in climate impact assessments of forest products using life cycle assessment (LCA). It also analyses the way the outcomes are influenced by the characteristics of the product under study. 

The authors conclude that different assumptions about system boundaries and setting of baselines for forest growth affect the outcome of these climate impact assessments in regards of their potential for climate impact mitigation from replacing non-forest benchmarks. The influence of methodological choices on the results decreases for longer time horizons.