Influence of traffic load on the environmental impacts of roads: A1 and A2 highways in Austria

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Professionals should aim to significantly reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by implementing the best road construction technologies to develop low-carbon projects. Although the traffic loads vary over the road length, the environmental impacts are assessed based on the average values of the traffic loads. Consequently, there is a gap between reality and the impacts calculated with fixed traffic load. This paper aims to assess the gap in terms of the environmental impacts of two roads by considering both a constant and a variable traffic load. With the help of a life cycle assessment (LCA), the environmental impacts of the A1 and A2 highways in Austria are calculated. We have calculated the impacts in the first scenario by considering an average traffic load. In the second scenario, based on real measurements, the environmental impacts of both highways are calculated for a variable traffic load. In the end, the results show a gap in the range of 25 %. This difference was because some parts of the roads required frequent repair. Besides, we figured out the optimal thickness of the wearing course, which improves the impact calculation and makes it less likely that the results will be different along the length of the road.
Original languageEnglish
Article number012118
JournalIOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022
EventSustainable Built Environment D-A-CH Conference 2022 - Built environment within Planetary Boundaries: SBE22 berlin - Natural Building Lab constructive design and climate adaptive architecture TU Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Duration: 20 Sept 202223 Sept 2022


  • bituminous pavement
  • flexible and rigid pavement
  • performance related approach
  • sustainable road construction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Fields of Expertise

  • Sustainable Systems

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