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Sustainability of Lubricants


API TR 1533 Lubricants Life Cycle Assessment and Carbon Footprinting—Methodology and Best Practice

The purpose of this Technical Report is to define terminology and to identify and capture industry practices for life LCA and CFP of lubricants. Life cycle assessment (LCA) and carbon footprints of products (CFP) are established methodologies used to quantify the environmental performance of products, processes, or services, and are increasingly being used as a basis for environmental decision-making along the supply chain. While LCA includes multiple impact categories, CFP focuses specifically on the impact category of “climate change,” which is associated with greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions/removals.


API TR 1533, Lubricants Life Cycle Assessment and Carbon Footprinting—Methodology and Best Practice


Publicly available data sources that could aid in the application of the guidance provided by this Technical Report can be found in Annex A of API TR 1533. This list may be modified over the lifetime of API TR 1533 to include new and/or eliminate outdated or obsolete publicly available data sources.

The table below should be considered as the most current listing of publicly available data sources made known to API and does not purport to contain all publicly available data. A future version of API TR 1533 will reference this table directly through website reference.

Annex A - Publicly Available Data Sources

Source LCA Stage Description Link
API End-of-life Life Cycle Assessment of Used Oil Management (2017)
ATIEL Avoived emissions Lubricants’ contribution to fuel economy; aka “Ricardo Energy & Environment”
CalRecycle Loss in use California used oil LCA; losses during use phase by lubricant type; Kline and Company
CIMAC General resource Internal Council on Combustion Engines
DEFRA (U.K.) Loss in use/ end-of-life Emmision factor for combustion, 2021 reporting-conversion-factors-2021
DOE End-of-life Waste fate material flows; U.S. market; Used Oil Management and Beneficial Reuse Options to Address Section 1: Energy Savings from Lubricating Oil
Ecoinvent Packaging Emission factors for raw materials (e.g. plastics, metal)
Ecoinvent, general End-of-life General introduction; waste material compositions; municipal waste collection
EPA End-of-life Emission factors for used oil factors-hub
EPA, AP-42 General resource Fuel oil combustion
EPA, eGRID General resource Grid factors
EPA Facts and Figures End-of-life Looks at generation, recycling, composting, combustion with energy recovery, landfilling for a variety of materials and products, and other pathways for food waste-and-recycling/guide-facts-and-figures-report- about#Materials_and_Products
EPA GHG Calculator Conversion reference This calculator may be useful in communicating a greenhouse gas reduction strategy, reduction targets, or other initiatives aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions
EPA, NEPIS General resource Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) Data Treatment Chemicals, Construction Materials, Transportation, On-site Equipment, and Other Processes for Use in Spreadsheets for Environmental Footprint Analysis (SEFA)
EPA, Scope 3 General resource Scope 3 emissions are the result of activities from assets not owned or controlled by the reporting organization, but that the organization indirectly impacts in its value chain.
EPA, Vermont Used Oil Study End-of-life Vermont Used Oil Analysis and Waste Oil Furnace Emissions Study
ERASM General resource Environment and health; risk assessment and management
Eurostat End-of-life Waste fate material flows; E.U.;EuroStat Data Browser; waste category: used oil; data can be split by waste management operation WASTRT custom_429516/default/table?lang=en
GaBi General Databases; cross-sector calculation tool
GHG Protocol—CHP Allocation Allocation of GHG Emissions from a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Plant
GLEC Logistics Emission factors by transport type
GREET General resource Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Technologies Model; Argonne National Laboratory

PEF General resource Multi-criteria measure of the environmental performance of a good or service throughout its life cycle
Springer Link General resource LCA of petroleum-based lubricants: state of art and inclusion of additives
Springer Link Uncertainty How to treat uncertainties in life cycle assessment studies?
Wiley Biolubricant A sustainability Assessment of a Biolubricant
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