Ecoinnovation in garden irrigation tools and carbon footprint assessment
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This article describes the eco-innovative characteristics implemented in electronic devices for irrigation with smart-gardening solutions, such as internet connection for weather forecast and sensors of soil moisture contents, as well as a database with different plants necessities. The main function of these products is to collect and analyse the information related to plants needs, thus reducing water and fertiliser consumption. In addition to quantify the environmental impact of savings in these two resource flows (40% water and 20% fertilizers savings) compared with conventional irrigation systems, an ISO 14067 compliant life cycle based Carbon Footprint evaluation has been performed to quantify environmental impact of the product itself. The main methodological issue is finding a means on how to proceed when the main environmental benefit of the product under study is, in fact, the service it provides to other systems and when this service cannot be included directly in the product's carbon footprint calculation due to lack of defined standard-use conditions (such as meteorology or soil composition). Implementation of smart irrigation tools in gardening and agriculture can lead the transition towards more sustainable production systems worldwide, as well as being an example of business transformation towards resource efficiency improvements through the use of information technology systems to contribute to circular economy.