Keywords: life cycle assessment, LCA, energy systems, environmental burdens, greenhouse gases, electricity supply, energy policy, China, air pollution, public health, coal, renewable energy, nuclear energy, greehouse gas emissions
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of Chinese energy chains for Shandong electricity scenarios
The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) performed for the China Energy Technology Program (CETP) has established streamlined environmental inventories of coal, nuclear, natural gas, and wind energy systems for supply of electricity to Shandong province with a 20 years time horizon. This paper deals with selected results for air pollutants obtained for the current coal technology and the comparison of current and future Chinese energy chains. The environmental performance of all coal systems is the worst among the considered energy chains. However, with improved or advanced coal technologies, the harm from SO2, NOx, and particle emissions to human health corresponding to the unit of electric service may reduce meaningfully. Also greenhouse gas emission rates reduce due to efficiency improvements and use of nuclear, but total emissions for expected scenarios may significantly increase due to the forecasted dramatic electricity demand growth.