Main Article Content
A comparative assessment of environmental impacts associated with the use of energy in palm kernel oil production and cashew nut processing industries was carried out using life cycle assessment. One Kg of products from both industries was chosen as the functional unit. The gate – to – gate life cycle assessment results indicated that the total contribution per functional unit to global warming potential (GWP), abiotic depletion potential (ADP) and acidification potential (AP) were 50.2809 g of CO2 equivalents, 0.1524 g antimony equivalents and 0.1280 g of SO2 equivalents respectively for palm kernel oil production and 39.8350 g of CO2 equivalents, 0.1209 g antimony equivalents and 0.0957 g of SO2 equivalents respectively for cashew nut processing. The scenario-based results indicated substantial reductions for all the considered impact categories; approximately 18, 28 and 94% reductions were achieved for ADP, GWP and AP respectively for both industries when public power supply from the natural grid was the main energy source for agricultural production. Increasing the thermal efficiency of the nation’s existing power architecture resulted into 62 and 56% reductions for GWP and ADP respectively for the two industries, while additional 6 and 7% reductions were achieved for both impact categories when the transmission and distribution loss was maintained at 5%. The widespread adoption of clean and renewable energy sources, instead of over-reliance on electricity supply from diesel-powered generator, has been identified as a feasible alternative towards achieving sustainability in the agro-processing industry.