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close this bookIndustrial Metabolism: Restructuring for Sustainable Development (UNU; 1994; 376 pages)
View the documentNote to the reader from the UNU
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentIntroduction
Open this folder and view contentsPart 1: General implications
close this folderPart 2: Case-studies
Open this folder and view contents6. Industrial metabolism at the national level: A case-study on chromium and lead pollution in Sweden, 1880-1980
Open this folder and view contents7. Industrial metabolism at the regional level: The Rhine Basin
Open this folder and view contents8. Industrial metabolism at the regional and local level: A case-study on a Swiss region
Open this folder and view contents9. A historical reconstruction of carbon monoxide and methane emissions in the United States, 1880-1980
Open this folder and view contents10. Sulphur and nitrogen emission trends for the United States: An application of the materials flow approach
close this folder11. Consumptive uses and losses of toxic heavy metals in the United States, 1880-1980
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentProduction-related heavy metal emissions
View the documentEmissions coefficients for production
View the documentConsumption-related heavy metal emissions
View the documentEmissions coefficient for consumption
View the documentHistorical usage patterns
View the documentConclusions
View the documentReferences
View the documentAppendix
Open this folder and view contentsPart 3: Further implications
View the documentBibliography
View the documentContributors

Production-related heavy metal emissions

Production processes for heavy metals, for our purposes, begin with smelting and refining. We do not include mining per se, or associated ore concentration (beneficiation) processes, which are normally carried out near the mine. While these processes generate enormous quantities of waste material, they are normally carried out in fairly remote locations.

In principle, we also include secondary refining in this category. In addition, trace metals are emitted in significant quantities via fly ash from the combustion of coal, oil (especially residual oil), and possibly wood. Though fuels are utilized for residential heating and transportation, as well as for utility and industrial purposes, we class fuel combustion as part of the production of housing and transport services. Thus, all emissions of heavy metals associated with fly ash from fossil-fuel refining are considered to be production-related. On the other hand, we include lead additives to gasoline and zinc additives to lubricating oil as consumption-related.

It must be pointed out that incineration of refuse and sewage sludge also results in heavy metal emissions. But this is an environmental transfer, not a true source of metallic pollutants. All of the metals emitted by incinerators must have been originally embodied in items of consumption discharged as wastes. Incinerator wastes are therefore consumption-related. Data on incinerator emissions are relevant to the extent that they provide evidence of final disposal routes.


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