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Economic Aspects of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction by Utilisation of Wind and Solar Energies to Produce Electricity and hydrogen

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3 Author(s)
Granovskii, M. ; Inst. of Technol., Univ. of Ontario, Oshawa, ON ; Dincer, I. ; Rosen, M.A.

Implementation of renewable wind and solar energy sources instead of fossil fuels to produce such energy carriers as electricity and hydrogen facilitates reductions in gaseous emissions. Unlike for traditional fossil fuel technologies, greenhouse gas emissions from renewable technologies are associated mainly with the construction of a power plant. With present costs of wind and solar electricity, it is shown that, when electricity from renewable sources replaces electricity from natural gas, the cost of greenhouse gas emissions abatement is about four times less than the cost if hydrogen from renewable sources replaces hydrogen produced from natural gas. When renewable-based hydrogen is used instead of gasoline in a fuel cell vehicle, the cost of greenhouse gas emissions reduction approaches the same value as for renewable-based electricity only if the fuel cell vehicle efficiency exceeds significantly (i.e., by about two times) that of an internal combustion vehicle. It is also shown that when 6000 turbines (Kenetech KVS-33) with a capacity 350 kW and a capacity factor of 24% replace a 500-MW gas-fired power generation plant with an efficiency of 40%, annual greenhouse gas emissions are reduced by 2.3 megatons. The incremental additional annual cost is about $280 million (US). The results provide a useful approach to an optimal strategy for greenhouse gas emissions mitigation.

Published in:

EIC Climate Change Technology, 2006 IEEE

Date of Conference:

10-12 May 2006