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  • Advanced LCA Research Group

    Advanced LCA Research Group

    Kyoko Ono
    Group Leader:Kyoko Ono

    5 Researchers:
     Keiichiro Sakurai, Mianqiang Xue, Yoon-Young Chun, Naoya Kojima

    4 Contract Employees


    We are conducting risk assessments and life cycle assessments (LCA) of potential problems posed by new technologies with the goal of providing evidence to support better decision-making for building a sustainable society. We are conducting risk trade-off analysis considering product life cycle for chemicals, as well as risk assessment of disasters and accidents. We are developing evaluation methods for analyzing socioeconomic impacts and spillover effects, together with social acceptability. We assess a variety of targets such as carbon neutral and energy-related technologies, nitrogen cycle technologies, and the introduction of marine biodegradable plastics.

    Research Highlights

    Finding pathways for accelerated deployment of energy technologies

    To realize a sustainable society, technologies such as energy-efficient buildings, renewables and electrical vehicles alone are not enough. Strategies for smooth deployment are also required. We research these strategies to maximize the societal benefits of new technologies.

    Figure: A proposed scenario for global deployment of photovoltaics (PV) to achieve 75TW of cumulative capacity by 2050. Historical and projected installation suggest this scenario is achievable.
    (N.M. Haegel et al., Science 380, Issue 6640, pp. 39-42, 6 Apr 2023)


    Understanding Public Acceptance of Energy Harvesting Technology from Radioactive Waste

    Energy harvesting technology from radioactive waste can be an innovative and sustainable energy solution. However, the public’s negative perception and low acceptance of radioactivity and related technologies are barriers to realizing this idea. This study aims to understand and analyze public acceptance, attitudes, and perceptions of energy harvesting technology from radioactive waste.


    Energy harvesting technology acceptance model for Japanese residents

    We develop a model to test if and how underlying factors (perceived risk, perceived benefit, perceived knowledge, social trust, and environmental concern) affect public acceptance of energy harvesting technology from already existing radioactive waste.


    Risk Assessment at Disasters and Accidents

    Assessment of Hazardous Chemicals Released at Disasters and Accidents

    We develop a comprehensive management scheme for rapidly forecasting the impact of accidental release of chemical substances. We establish a method for predicting chemical concentration distributions resulting from diffusion in the atmosphere and water using suitable dispersion models.
    We provide information for advancing the study of countermeasures, such as a reference table of case studies summarizing prediction results.


    Contour map of heavy gas model at an accidental release (Ammonia)

    An example of reference table, showing distance to endpoints (Toluene)


    Quantitative Risk Assessment of Industrial Processes

    We conduct quantitative risk assessments (QRA) for industrial processes, including hydrogen stations and ammonia co-firing power generation, to evaluate whether the risk is below the acceptable risk level.

    Risk acceptance criteria and risk of a hydrogen station


    Integrated Assessment of Risk & Risk Tradeoff

    Integration assessment of multiple risks, criteria and stakeholders

    ・We are developing risk/risk trade-off evaluation methods based on life cycle thinking.
    ・We are developing integrated evaluation methods to accommodate diverse criteria and multiple stakeholders.
    ・Our aim is to apply these methods to nitrogen cycling technology, energy carrier technology, and biomass utilization technology in the energy and environment area, in order to provide insights into scientific decision-making.


    Integration assessment framework