In developed countries, contractors often provide farms with much of their mechanisation needs. Compared to farmers. They can more promptly write-off their capital investment and help reduce farmer costs. This can help reduce the environmental impact of mechanisation and therefore the aim of this study was to assess the environmental impact of scenarios involving different levels of tractor utilisation from updated data from tractors used by agricultural contracting companies. A survey was carried out in a group of contracting companies located in the Po valley, Northern Italy. Overall, 249 tractors were involved in the data collection. A life cycle assessment (LCA) approach was applied to three scenarios considering different annual working times and different estimated service life. Two scenarios were representative of farmers characterised by a low annual working time (400 h yr−1) and different replacement times (10- and 30-year), whilst the third was representative of agricultural contractors involving a high annual working time (1200 h yr−1) and a 10-year replacement time. The LCA showed that unlike farmers, who try to counteract the low average annual working time of tractors by the extending their use beyond the threshold of their technical obsolescence rather than replacing them, agricultural contractors who fully exploit tractors before their technical obsolescence, have a rapid turnover of machines and consequently emission of pollutants is reduced achieving improved environmental results.

How does annual utilisation can affect the environmental impact of tractors? A life-cycle assessment comparing hypothetical scenarios for farmers and agricultural contractors in Northern Italy / J. Bacenetti. - In: BIOSYSTEMS ENGINEERING. - ISSN 1537-5110. - 213:(2022 Feb), pp. 63-75. [10.1016/j.biosystemseng.2021.11.024]

How does annual utilisation can affect the environmental impact of tractors? A life-cycle assessment comparing hypothetical scenarios for farmers and agricultural contractors in Northern Italy

J. Bacenetti
Primo
2022-02

Abstract

In developed countries, contractors often provide farms with much of their mechanisation needs. Compared to farmers. They can more promptly write-off their capital investment and help reduce farmer costs. This can help reduce the environmental impact of mechanisation and therefore the aim of this study was to assess the environmental impact of scenarios involving different levels of tractor utilisation from updated data from tractors used by agricultural contracting companies. A survey was carried out in a group of contracting companies located in the Po valley, Northern Italy. Overall, 249 tractors were involved in the data collection. A life cycle assessment (LCA) approach was applied to three scenarios considering different annual working times and different estimated service life. Two scenarios were representative of farmers characterised by a low annual working time (400 h yr−1) and different replacement times (10- and 30-year), whilst the third was representative of agricultural contractors involving a high annual working time (1200 h yr−1) and a 10-year replacement time. The LCA showed that unlike farmers, who try to counteract the low average annual working time of tractors by the extending their use beyond the threshold of their technical obsolescence rather than replacing them, agricultural contractors who fully exploit tractors before their technical obsolescence, have a rapid turnover of machines and consequently emission of pollutants is reduced achieving improved environmental results.
Environmental impact; Life cycle assessment; Tractor operating time; Tractor use
Settore AGR/09 - Meccanica Agraria
Article (author)
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/889135
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