Weighting is one of the steps in life cycle impact assessment that integrates various characterized environmental impacts as a single index. Weighting factors should be based on the society's preferences. However, most previous studies consider only the opinion of some people. Thus, this research proposes a new weighting method that determines the weighting factors of environmental impact categories by considering public opinion on environmental impacts using the Internet search volumes for relevant terms. To validate the new weighting method, the weighting factors for six environmental impacts calculated by the new weighting method were compared with the existing weighting factors. The resulting Pearson's correlation coefficient between the new and existing weighting factors was from 0.8743 to 0.9889. It turned out that the new weighting method presents reasonable weighting factors. It also requires less time and lower cost compared to existing methods and likewise meets the main requirements of weighting methods such as simplicity, transparency, and reproducibility. The new weighting method is expected to be a good alternative for determining the weighting factor.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIP; Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning) ( NRF-2015R1A2A1A05001657 ).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law