Frontiers of Engineering Management

, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp 406–415 | Cite as

Environmental and human health impact assessment of major interior wall decorative materials

  • Bingqing Zhang
  • Ruochen Zeng
  • Xiaodong LiEmail author
Research Article


Despite the growing interest in green products in the interior wall decorative material market, knowledge gaps exist because determining which product is more environmental and user friendly than the others is difficult. This work assesses the environmental and human health profiles of interior latex and wallpaper. Two interior latex products of different raw material ratios and one non-woven wallpaper product are considered. The environmental impact assessment follows life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology and applies Building Environmental Performance Analysis System (BEPAS). The human health impact is based on impact-pathway chain and is performed using Building Health Impact Analysis System (BHIAS). The assessment scope, associated emissions, and territorial scope of various emissions are defined to facilitate comparison study of interior wall decorative products. The impacts are classified into 15 categories belonging to three safeguard areas: ecological environment, natural resources, and human health. The impacts of categories are calculated and monetized using willingness to pay (WTP) and disability-adjusted life year (DALY) and summarized as an integrated external cost of environmental and human health impacts. Assessment results reveal that the integrated impact of interior latex is lower than that of non-woven wallpaper, and the interior latex of low quality causes low life cycle integrated impact. The most impacted categories are global warming, respiratory effects, and water consumption. Hotspots of product manufacturing are recognized to promote green product design.


life cycle assessment human health impact integrated assessment interior wall decorative material green product 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Acharya B K, Cao C, Xu M, Khanal L, Naeem S, Pandit S (2018). Present and future of dengue fever in Nepal: mapping climatic suitability by ecological niche model. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 15(2): 187–201CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Azuma K, Uchiyama I, Uchiyama S, Kunugita N (2016). Assessment of inhalation exposure to indoor air pollutants: screening for health risks of multiple pollutants in Japanese dwellings. Environmental Research, 145: 39–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barberio G, Scalbi S, Buttol P, Masoni P, Righi S (2014). Combining life cycle assessment and qualitative risk assessment: the case study of alumina nanofluid production. The Science of the Total Environment, 496: 122–131CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Brandt J, Silver J D, Christensen J H, Andersen M S, Bonlokke J H, Sigsgaard T, Geels C, Gross A, Hansen A B, Hansen K M, Hedegaard G B, Kaas E, Frohn L M (2013a). Assessment of past, present and future health-cost externalities of air pollution in Europe and the contribution from international ship traffic using the EVA model system. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 13(15): 7747–7764CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Brandt J, Silver J D, Christensen J H, Andersen M S, Bonlokke J H, Sigsgaard T, Geels C, Gross A, Hansen A B, Hansen K M, Hedegaard G B, Kaas E, Frohn L M (2013b). Contribution from the ten major emission sectors in Europe and Denmark to the health-cost externalities of air pollution using the EVA model system - An integrated modelling approach. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 13(15): 7725–7746CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brasche S, Bischof W (2005). Daily time spent indoors in German homes - Baseline data for the assessment of indoor exposure of German occupants. International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health, 208(4): 247–253CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bueno C, Hauschild M Z, Rossignolo J A, Ometto A R, Mendes N C (2016). Sensitivity analysis of the use of life cycle impact assessment methods: a case study on building materials. Journal of Cleaner Production, 112: 2208–2220CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Burnett R T, Pope C A, Ezzati M, Olives C, Lim S S, Mehta S, Shin H H, Singh G, Hubbell B, Brauer M, Anderson H R, Smith K R, Balmes J R, Bruce N G, Kan H, Laden F, Prüss-Ustün A, Turner M C, Gapstur S M, Diver W R, Cohen A (2014). An integrated risk function for estimating the global burden of disease attributable to ambient fine particulate matter exposure. Environmental Health Perspectives, 122 (4): 397–403CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. EPLCA (2010). European platform on life cycle assessment, list of toolsGoogle Scholar
  10. Ferrao J L, Niquisse S, Mendes J M, Painho M (2018). Mapping and modelling malaria risk areas using climate, socio-demographic and clinical variables in Chimoio, Mozambique. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 15(4): 795–809CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Furberg A, Arvidsson R, Molander S (2018). Live and let die? Life cycle human health impacts from the use of tire studs. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 15(8): 1774–1786CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Im U, Brandt J, Geels C, Hansen K M, Christensen J H, Andersen M S, Solazzo E, Kioutsioukis I, Alyuz U, Balzarini A, Baro R, Bellasio R, Bianconi R, Bieser J, Colette A, Curci G, Farrow A, Flemming J, Fraser A, Jimenez-Guerrero P, Kitwiroon N, Liang C K, Nopmongcol U, Pirovano G, Pozzoli L, Prank M, Rose R, Sokhi R, Tuccella P, Unal A, Vivanco M G, West J, Yarwood G, Hogrefe C, Galmarini S (2018). Assessment and economic valuation of air pollution impacts on human health over Europe and the United States as calculated by a multi-model ensemble in the framework of AQMEII3. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 18(8): 5967–5989CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. ISO (2006a). Environmental Management-Life Cycle Assessment- Principles and Framework. London: British Standards InstitutionGoogle Scholar
  14. ISO (2006b). Environmental Management-Life Cycle Assessment- Requirements and Guidelines. Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for StandardizationGoogle Scholar
  15. Kong X Q (2010). Research on the health damage assessment model of building during the life cycle. Thesis for the Master’s Degree. Beijing: Tsinghua UniversityGoogle Scholar
  16. Li X D, Su S, Zhang Z H, Kong X Q (2017). An integrated environmental and health performance quantification model for pre-occupancy phase of buildings in China. Environmental Impact Assessment Review, 63: 1–11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Li X D, Zhu Y M, Zhang Z H (2010). An LCA-based environmental impact assessment model for construction processes. Building and Environment, 45(3): 766–775CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Liu R J, Zhang Z H, Zhou L (2011). A comparative study of waterproof material’s life cycle environmental impact. Environmental Pollution & Control, 33(12): 103–106Google Scholar
  19. Ma Y, Cao L, Zhou C H (2011). Environmental impact assessment of typical chemical product using life cycle assessment-based on waterbased paint. Environmental Science & Technology, 34: 189–193Google Scholar
  20. National Bureau of Statistics of China (2016). China Statistical Yearbook. Beijing: China Statitics Press (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  21. National Bureau of Statistics of China (2017). China Statistical Yearbook. Beijing: China Statitics Press (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  22. Sexton K, Adgate J L, Ramachandran G, Pratt G C, Mongin S J, Stock T H, Morandi M T (2004). Comparison of personal, indoor, and outdoor exposures to hazardous air pollutants in three urban communities. Environmental Science & Technology, 38(2): 423–430CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Shanghai Bureau of Statistics (2017). Shanghai Statistical Yearbook. Beijing: China Statitics PressGoogle Scholar
  24. Skaar C, Jorgensen R B (2013). Integrating human health impact from indoor emissions into an LCA: a case study evaluating the significance of the use stage. International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 18(3): 636–646CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Steen B (2000). A systematic approach to environmental priority strategies in product development (EPS): Version 2000-General System Characteristics. Centre for Environmental Assessment of Products and Material Systems, GothenburgGoogle Scholar
  26. The Danish Environmental Protection Agency (2004). The product, functional unit and reference flows in LCA. Environmental News No. 70Google Scholar
  27. Tian L W, Zhang G Q, Lin Y L, Yu J H, Zhou J, Zhang Q (2009). Mathematical model of particle penetration through smooth/rough building envelop leakages. Building and Environment, 44(6): 1144–1149CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. US EPA (2008). Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS). Office of Health and Environmental AssessmentGoogle Scholar
  29. Weldu Y W, Assefa G, Jolliet O (2017). Life cycle human health and ecotoxicological impacts assessment of electricity production from wood biomass compared to coal fuel. Applied Energy, 187: 564–574CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. WHO (2010). WHO Guidelines for Indoor Air Quality: Selected Pollutants. Bonn: World Health OrganizationGoogle Scholar
  31. Yang J X, Wang R S, Liu J R (2001). Methodology of life cycle impact assessment for Chinese products. Acta Scientiae Circumstantiae, 21 (2): 234–237Google Scholar
  32. Zhang Y Z, Luo X F, Buis J J, Sutherland J W (2015). LCA-oriented semantic representation for the product life cycle. Journal of Cleaner Production, 86: 146–162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Zhang Z H, Wu X, Yang X M, Zhu Y M (2006). BEPAS - A life cycle building environmental performance assessment model. Building and Environment, 41(5): 669–675CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Higher Education Press 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Construction Management, School of Civil EngineeringTsinghua UniversityBeijingChina
  2. 2.School of Construction ManagementUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA

Personalised recommendations