2023 Environmental Release Notes

INTRODUCTION

IMPLAN’s environmental data come from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and consist of ratios representing physical emissions or inputs per dollar of industry output, with the physical unit depending on the particular pollutant or input under consideration. The total amount of emissions/inputs comes directly from the EPA, while the output used to create ratios comes from IMPLAN. The EPA data has somewhat less sector-specificity than the IMPLAN data, so the total amount of emissions/inputs may be mapped to more than one IMPLAN sector. This means that ratios for each IMPLAN sector should be unique, despite sharing the numerator of total emissions across a few industries. These ratios can be used to gain insight into some of the environmental impacts associated with a given economic impact modeled via the IMPLAN system. They can also be used to compare environmental footprints across geographies or time.

IMPLAN does its very best to provide accurate regional economic models, just as the EPA does its very best to provide accurate industry-specific environmental coefficients. It is upon the analyst to understand the IMPLAN data and input-output modeling framework, including its limitations, and to employ best practices when using the IMPLAN system, in which case the resulting associated environmental impacts and/or footprints can be taken seriously.    

CHANGE IN USEEIO VERSION

This release of IMPLAN’s environmental data is the first which we use the EPA’s United States Environmentally-Extended Input-Output (USEEIO) table version 2.0. The first release of IMPLAN’s data used the first iteration of the USEEIO model (1.0) which contained less current data and varying satellite accounts. For full details on this model, please see USEEIO v2.0, The US Environmentally-Extended Input-Output Model v2.0.

Of note is that environmental ‘tags’ are removed as a result of this shift. The new organizational method employed defines environmental flowables according to their ‘context.

UPDATES TO CATEGORIES OF ENVIRONMENTAL DATA

Changes in the source data for this product resulted in a change in the number and contents of all satellite tables for our environmental data. The below images provide a mapping reference between the tables found in the first and second releases. The years in parentheses indicate the year in which the ratios for each compound were sourced from.

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In addition to the nine tables above, new tables have also been added for Commercial Non-Hazardous Waste From Construction Activities (2014); Commercial RCRA-Defined Hazardous Waste (2017); and Commercial Non-Hazardous Waste Excluding Construction (2015).

Of note, the Water Use and Emissions table also no longer includes estimates for releases back to the water. The ‘emissions’ context found within the data refers solely to water that is removed from the environment due to evaporative loss as a result of industry activity, and thus results for water use can now be summed without having to manually edit out water releases to create a net value.

Below is the list of the 12 broad Categories of Environmental Data we have, listed by table acronym pulled directly from the USEEIO model: 

  • CHAIR (Criteria and Hazardous Air Emissions) 
    • Examples:  
      • Nitrogen Dioxide 
      • Chromium III 
      • Formaldehyde 
      • Styrene 
      • Chlorine 
  • CNHW (Commercial Non-Hazardous Waste From Non-Construction Activities) 
    • Examples: 
      • Tires 
      • Ash 
      • Aluminum Cans 
      • Paper Bags 
  • CNHWC (Commercial Non-Hazardous Waste From Construction Activities) 
    • Examples:  
      • Asphalt Pavement 
      • Bricks 
      • Cardboard 
      • Glass 
      • Drywall 
  • CRHW (Commercial RCRA-Defined Hazardous Waste) 
    • Examples: 
      • Dried Paint 
      • Sodium Azide 
      • Waste Oil 
      • 2-Butanone 
  • GHG (Greenhouse Gasses) 
    • Examples:  
      • CO2 
      • N2O 
      • Sulfur Hexafluoride 
  • GRDREL (Point Source Industrial Releases to Ground) 
    • Examples: 
      • Ammonia 
      • Lead 
      • Zinc compounds 
      • Mercury 
      • Anthracene 
  • LAND (Land Use) 
    • Examples:  
      • Land use by m2*a 
  • MINE (Mineral Extraction) 
    • Examples: 
      • Copper 
      • Lead 
      • Gold 
  • NPAG (Nitrogen and Phosphorus Releases from Agriculture) 
    • Examples: 
      • Nitrogen 
      • Phosphorus 
  • PEST (Pesticide Releases) 
    • Examples: 
      • Pyraclostrobin 
      • Imazamox 
      • Carbaryl 
  • WAT (Water Withdrawals) 
    • Examples: 
      • Water, fresh (emission and resource) 
      • Water, saline  
  • WATREL (Point Source Releases to Water) 
    • Examples:  
      • Formaldehyde 
      • Nitrogen 
      • Zinc 
      • Aluminum

ADDITION OF THE ReCiPe LCIA DATA

IMPLAN Estimates of Land Use and Greenhouse Gasses now also include equivalencies data from the ReCiPe method of Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA).

REFERENCES 

Yang, Y., W.W. Ingwersen, T.R. Hawins, M. Srocka, and D.E. Meyer, 2017. USEEIO: A new and transparent United States environmentally extended input-output model. Journal of Cleaner Production, 158: 308-318. 

Written November 9, 2023