The Sustainable Process Index SPI as an engineer’s tool for environmental impact assessment of processes: the sugar industry as a case study

The Sustainable Process Index (SPI), a member of the ecological footprint family, is an ISO 14000 compatible tool for the evaluation of environmental impacts of processes. It allows the calculation of the relevant ecological pressures of a process including prechain and product usage. The SPI focuses on aspects of environmental sustainability and is aimed at engineers and the factors they can influence most effectively: material and energy flows that processes exchange with their environments.