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Selected Development Project
Project Title

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Life Cycle Cost (LCC) Analysis of Food Waste Management Options in the Perspective of Global Warming in Hong Kong

Principal Investigator Dr DENG Wenjing
Area of Research Project
Social Studies
Project Period
From 01/2013 To 12/2015
  • To identify the key stages in each food waste management option and collect data on each stage of management systems in Hong Kong;
  • To obtain real data on air, water and soil emissions from four different management facilities in local or national greenhouse gases inventories;
  • To investigate and compare which stage(s) contribute to significant environmental impact to global warming (positive and negative) by the LCA-EASEWASTE method; 
  • To assess and compare the economic costs by the LCC method.
Methods Used
  • Data collection of each scenario, which are generation and collection, transfer and transport, and treatment and disposal.
  • The data collected, including the input (energy and materials) and output (environmental emissions, commercial production of compost, electricity, and steam) will be evaluated by the model, EASEWASTE. Four management options will be compared in terms of global warming potential (GWP) (kg of CO2-eq from 1 ton of food waste).
  • The costs and benefits of four scenarios will be analyzed by LCC.
Summary of Findings
  • The environmental impacts of four different strategies of food waste management were investigated in terms of greenhouse gases emissions.
  • The life cycle costs of four options were analyzed and option of the lowest life cost will found.
  • These results provide quantitative evidence for food waste management in Hong Kong.
  • Theoretically, this study combines the environmental LCA plus LCC analysis application on food waste management options.
  • Practically, the present research will identify the most environmentally and economically friendly options in Hong Kong.
  1. Xing, W., Lu, W.J., Zhao, Y., Zhang, X., Deng, W. J., & Christensen, T. H. (2013). Environmental impact assessment of leachate recirculation in landfill of municipal solid waste by comparing with evaporation and discharge (EASEWASTE). Waste Management, 33(2): 382-389.
  2. Zhao, Y., & Deng, W.J.* (2014). Environmental impacts of different food waste resource technologies and the effects of energy mix. Resources, Conservation & Recycling 92: 214-221.
  3. Deng, W.J.*, Zhao, Y. & So, W.W.M (2015). Life cycle cost of food waste management options in Hong Kong from the perspective of Global Warming. Environmental and Resource Economics. (Manuscript, under review).
  4. Deng, W.J. (2016). Turning food wastes into fuels. In “Biodegradation and Bioconversion of Hydrocarbons”, Obulisamy. P. Karthikeyan (Ed). Springer, Berlin Germany. (Under publishing)
Biography of Principal Investigator

Dr Deng took up the position of Assistant Professor on September 1, 2011 in the Department of Science and Environmental Studies at The Hong Kong Institute of Education following four years of teaching at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Dr Deng has demonstrated high level of competence and effectiveness in teaching and curriculum development in both undergraduate and postgraduate level. Being the program leader of Master of Social Science in Community Education for Environmental Management,  Dr Deng has involved in design of the master program as well as integrating aspects of environmental education into it.

Dr Deng has successfully secured both external and internal grants/funding. She has contributed as the Principal Investigator of an external competitive research grant funded by the Early Career Scheme under the Research Grants Council (2012-2013). Regarding research output, Dr Deng has published more than 20 peer-reviewed SCI journal articles which most of them were with high impact factors, such is Environmental International (IF=5.559), Atmospheric Environment (IF=3.281), etc.

Dr Deng has taken up different types of services in the Institute as well as in the profession and Community. Dr Deng has collaborated with other colleagues to work with tender projects. As the PI, her projects titled ‘ Provision of Services for Developing Teaching Resources on Indoor Air Quality for Primary and Secondary Schools’ (2012-2013) has developed a first-ever teaching kit which included Chinese and English videos and teaching materials on indoor air quality for all primary and secondary schools in Hong Kong, which has a great impact to the community.

Dr Deng’s works have been recognized in her field of Environmental Sciences. She has been invited to be academic advisor for NGOs ‘Ever Green Association’ and ‘Tai Po Environmental Association’, and be the consultant on waste management for the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department. She has also served as reviewer for several journals, namely, ‘Waste Environment Research’, ‘Journal of Environmental Geochemistry and Health’, ‘Frontiers of Environmental Science and Engineering’ and ‘Asia-pacific Forum on Science Learning and Teaching’.

Funding Source

Early Career Scheme