Life Cycle Assessment of Arapaha products

Introduction

All our Arapaha products are designed to have a minimum impact on our planet without compromising aesthetics and performance. We carefully select bio-based materials, we use strict creation guide lines and we take responsibility to bring all materials used in our products back again and again.

Teaming Up

An important part of our science based decision making is to calculate the footprint of our products. To do so we have teamed up with TNO, The Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research. The full TNO report can be downloaded below.

Methodology

A life cycle assessment (LCA) is a methodology for assessing environmental impacts associated with all the stages of the life cycle of a commercial product, process, or service. The respective impacts of various end-of-life treatments are calculated based on the ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 standards using Simapro software version 9.3.03. For the LCA ReCiPe 2016 Midpoint (H) impact assessment method is chosen to calculate the environmental impacts of the technologies as well as the European Product Environmental Footprint method.

Key Assumptions

  • The polylactic acid used in our products are supplied by either NatureWorks from the USA or TotalCorbion PLA from Thailand. Once TotalCorbion PLA has opened their announced new plant in France further optimization of the footprint is possible.
  • We have taken into account the actual transport distances from manufacturing and a range of distribution to customers of 200 to 1000 km.
  • Arapaha products are assumed to have similar life spans as the conventional products ranging from 3 years for a bath mat to 10 years for a chair.
  • Because we have a strict closed loop approach we have taken into account that the initial raw materials used to make our products capture CO2 during their growth (called sequestration).
  • To err on the save side for our multicycle analysis we have taken a low collection rate of 50% into account.
  • The current Dutch energy mix is used in the calculations.
  • The benefits of recycling and energy recovery through incineration have been taken into account using the avoided burden method.

Arapaha products

For six Arapaha products TNO compared their carbon footprint with the conventional designs. A massive carbon footprint reduction can be achieved ranging from 33 to up to 97%.

Closed Loop

Enjoy and cherish our products that are part of a clean and closed cycle: use, re-sell, give away or return to us. But how big is the impact of returning your product once you no longer have use for it? We simulated this by varying the collection rate from 35 to 80%. As you can see the effort to run goods after their initial use has a marked impact on reducing the overall carbon footprint.

Molecular Recycling

We have asked ourselves how our molecular recycling technology, which is a vital part of our closed loop, compares in carbon footprint with other options such as mechanical recycling, composting and incineration. Molecular recycling makes it possible to reuse the materials and thereby outperforms almost all other possible technologies.

Multi Cycle

To really reduce the footprint of our consumption we continue to use Arapaha products after their initial use. So how does the carbon footprint develop if you analyse the lifetime of a generation? As you can see below if you use an Arapaha rug for a generation you can have a 5 times lower carbon footprint compared to using a conventional rug!

You can read more about LCA here

Read more here