Background for this tool
Kvadrat Shade makes roller blind solutions with metallized textile, which can significantly reduce the energy consumption of buildings. In summer, the need for cooling is reduced as the metallized textile reflects the sun's rays. In winter, the need for heating is reduced as the metallized textile has a heat-insulating effect. The energy savings can be calculated on the basis of a number of parameters (textile type, location, orientation, window area) and then converted into an avoided climate impact (CO2 eq emissions). This avoided climate impact should be weighted against the climate impact of producing the roller blind solutions, which would allow for calculation of a break-even point for the roller blind solutions.
The climate impact of Kvadrat Shade textiles used in the roller blind solutions have previously been evaluated through a series of life cycle assessments, which were third party verified and registered as environmental product declarations (EPDs).
This CO2 tool evaluates the climate impact of the remaining components in the roller blind solutions, namely, the hardware as well as the transport of components to assembly site and the transport of final products (including textile) to the customer.
The EPDs of Kvadrat Shade textiles are third party verified and fulfill the requirements in EN15804+A1, and the database used for obtaining LCI datasets is ecoinvent v3.4. The general modelling rules of EN15804+A1 have been followed for the screening of hardware climate impact and the same database for obtaining LCI datasets has been used (although a more recent version - v3.7). This was done in order to obtain consistency between the textile and the hardware impacts. EN15804+A1 entails the use of the "Allocation, cut off" system model in ecoinvent. This approach is also known as the "recycled content method", because of the way it models recycled materials. In this approach it is the consumer of recycled materials that gets the benefit of using recycled instead of virgin materials (the climate impact of the recycled material stems only from the recycling process). Accordingly, in this approach the producer of the recyclable waste does not account for the climate impact of recycling the waste material.
There are other approaches to modelling recycled materials in LCA - one where the burdens and benefits of recycling materials are shared between the consumer of recycled materials and the producer of recyclable wastes.
Another approach - the consequential method - looks at the market for recycled materials and aims to reproduce the actual response in the market when the demand for a recycled material increases. For some recycled materials this will mean an increase in the recycling of this material, while for other recycled materials it will mean that another consumer of the recycled material will start consuming virgin material instead. The cut-off approach has been used for the current LCA screening, since it is the approach taken by EN15804+A1.
The datasets were extracted through the LCA software SimaPro. The datasets have been calculated using the "ReCiPe 2016 Midpoint Hierarchist" method. It should be noted that the textile climate impact has been evaluated more elaborately in a full LCA study, which has been third party verified, whereas the hardware climate impact has been screened and not third party verified. The assumptions of the climate impact screening of hardware are outlined in the following.
The hardware for Kvadrat Shade roller blind solutions consists of multiple components made of either aluminium, steel, zamak or ABS.
The climate impact evaluated includes raw material extraction, production of components and transport to assembly site in Eibergen, Netherlands. The transport of the final product to the customer is also included as a worst case scenario (heaviest product configuration transported from Eibergen to Istanbul). The assembly (which is the manufacturing of the hardware product) has been excluded from the screening. This means that the phases A1, A2 and A4 are included in this LCA screening, and the remaining life cycle phases have been excluded.
Raw material extraction and component production
The hardware components made of aluminium consist partly of virgin and party of recycled aluminium. The virgin aluminium (primary aluminium ingot) is assumed obtained from the average global market excluding Europe and North America but including Turkey. This dataset is deemed to best represent the production of the aluminium hardware components for Kvadrat Shade, which takes place in China and Turkey. The dataset does not include any average transportation between the primary aluminium ingot production and the aluminium component production site, since primary aluminium ingot is generally considered to be used at the site. The recycled aluminium is modelled using a global dataset excluding Europe for refining of post-consumer aluminium scraps into cast aluminium billets. The dataset does not include any average transportation between the recycling and the aluminium component production site. The production of aluminium components is represented by a global dataset for general "metal working" for the manufacturing of aluminium products (per kg aluminium product). The CO2 tool allows the user to vary the amount of recycled aluminium used in the components (%).
The remaining components (steel, zamak and ABS) for Kvadrat Shade roller blinds are produced in Taiwan.
The steel material (low alloyed) is assumed obtained from the average global market and includes average market transport distances and transport modes for the raw material to the point of production. It should be noted that these are not specific to the supply chain of Kvadrat Shade. The production of steel components is represented by a global dataset excluding Europe for general "metal working" for the manufacturing of steel products (per kg steel product).
The zamak material is assumed to be 100% zinc in the CO2 tool, which is the main component of zamak. The zinc is assumed obtained from the average global market and includes average market transport distances and transport modes for the raw material to the point of production. It should be noted that these are not specific to the supply chain of Kvadrat Shade. The production of zinc components is represented by a global dataset excluding Europe for general "metal working" for the manufacturing of metal products (per kg metal product).
Transport to assembly and from assembly to customer
For estimating the transport distances and transport modes from component production to the assembly site in Eibergen, Netherlands, and from assembly to the customer, the webpage ecotransit.org has been used. As the production countries for components are known - but the exact adresses are unknown - the default location of ecotransit for each country has been used. This default location is a geographically central location in that country. For all components transport the transportation from production to assembly has three legs: (1) transport within the production country by truck, (2) shipping by container ship to Amsterdam, and (3) transport by truck from Amsterdam to the assembly in Eibergen. These legs have been represented by datasets for (1) global (excluding Europe) freight by 16-32 t EURO 4 lorry, (2) global container ship, and (3) European freight by 16-32 ton EURO 4 lorry.
For aluminium components for Kvadrat Shade roller blind solutions the production can take place either in Turkey or China. The CO2 tool allows the user to choose between three transport scenarios, namely, (1) from Turkey to Eibergen, (2) from China to Eibergen, and (3) average of transportation from China and Turkey.
For the transport from assembly in Eibergen to the customer a worst case scenario has been added for simplicity. The worst case scenario consists of always considering the heaviest configuration of roller blind solution combined with a long distance (Eibergen to Istanbul) European truck transport. The one-legged transport is represented by the dataset for European freight by 16-32 ton EURO 4 lorry.
All results are calculated with a standard Reference Glazing G, Solar control Double Glazing
Insulation and solar heat gain calculations are performed in WIS 3.0.1.SP2 in compliance with EN-ISO 52022-3 algorithms and are based on annual Solar irradiations and thermal heat flow through the fenestration.
Local meteorological data and cost of electricity are based on yearly averages.
Coefficient Of Performance (COP) of the air conditioning/heat pump in these calculations is 3.