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Life Cycle Environmental Impact Assessment of Circular Agriculture: A Case Study in Fuqing, China

  • Dong, X.
  • Wu, F.
  • Chen, Z.
  • Weng, B.
  • Wang, X.
  • Lu, N.
  • Wei, H.
  • Xu, Z.
  • Zhang, P.
  • Fan, W.

The process for reasonably evaluating the potential impacts of circular agriculture on the environment has become a key issue in the sustainable development of circular agriculture. Based on this consideration, by using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and focusing on the circular agriculture industry company of Xingyuan, Fuqing, this paper evaluates the potential impacts of the pig farming industry-dragon fruit planting-forage planting-fishery industry-mushroom planting-biogas generating-organic fertilizer production circular agriculture model compared to a main agriculture industrial model, the pig farming industry, from environmental and environmental-economic perspectives. Moreover, this paper determines key elements that restrict the development of circular agriculture through a sensitivity analysis. The results show that if we simply consider the potential environmental impacts, circular agriculture does not produce better results than those of the main agricultural production model. In addition, if we consider reducing the potential environmental impact as well as improving the economic benefits from the perspective of a "reduction ring", we should consider removing mushroom planting and organic fertilizer from the circular agriculture framework. Moreover, if we want to reduce the potential environmental impact without changing the current recycling model, we should focus on the premix components, especially the three main components of corn, soybean meal, and whey protein concentrate. © 2018 by the authors.

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