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Potential for greenhouse gas emission reductions using surplus electricity in hydrogen, methane and methanol production via electrolysis
- Uusitalo, Ville, Väisänen, Sanni, Inkeri, Eero, Soukka, Risto
- Energy conversion and management 2017 v.134 pp. 125-134
- electricity, electricity costs, electrolysis, energy, fossil fuels, gas engines, greenhouse gas emissions, hydrogen, life cycle assessment, methane, methane production, methanol, steam, transportation
- Using a life cycle perspective, potentials for greenhouse gas emission reductions using various power-to-x processes via electrolysis have been compared. Because of increasing renewable electricity production, occasionally surplus renewable electricity is produced, which leads to situations where the price of electricity approach zero. This surplus electricity can be used in hydrogen, methane and methanol production via electrolysis and other additional processes. Life cycle assessments have been utilized to compare these options in terms of greenhouse gas emission reductions. All of the power-to-x options studied lead to greenhouse gas emission reductions as compared to conventional production processes based on fossil fuels. The highest greenhouse gas emission reductions can be gained when hydrogen from steam reforming is replaced by hydrogen from the power-to-x process. High greenhouse gas emission reductions can also be achieved when power-to-x products are utilized as an energy source for transportation, replacing fossil transportation fuels. A third option with high greenhouse gas emission reduction potential is methane production, storing and electricity conversion in gas engines during peak consumption hours. It is concluded that the power-to-x processes provide a good potential solution for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in various sectors.