Advanced

The need for robust, consistent methods in societal exergy accounting

Sousa, Tânia; Brockway, Paul; Cullen, Jonathan M.; Henriques, Sofia LU ; Miller, Jack ; Serrenho, Andre Cabrera and Domingos, Tiago (2017) In Ecological Economics 141. p.11-21
Abstract
Studies of societal exergy use have the common aim of tracing the flow of exergy along society, and are used to gain insights into the efficiency of energy use and linkages to economic growth. However, their methodological approaches vary greatly, with significant impacts on results. Therefore, we make a review of past studies to identify, synthesize and discuss methodological differences, to contribute to a more consistent and robust approach to societal exergy accounting. Issues that should be taken into account when making methodological options are discussed and key insights are presented: (1) For mapping of primary inputs and useful exergy categories, the inclusion of all natural resources is more consistent but it has the cost of not... (More)
Studies of societal exergy use have the common aim of tracing the flow of exergy along society, and are used to gain insights into the efficiency of energy use and linkages to economic growth. However, their methodological approaches vary greatly, with significant impacts on results. Therefore, we make a review of past studies to identify, synthesize and discuss methodological differences, to contribute to a more consistent and robust approach to societal exergy accounting. Issues that should be taken into account when making methodological options are discussed and key insights are presented: (1) For mapping of primary inputs and useful exergy categories, the inclusion of all natural resources is more consistent but it has the cost of not being able to distinguish the various energy end-uses in the production of materials. (2) To estimate primary electricity, none of the methods currently used is able to capture simultaneously the efficiency of the renewable energy sector, the environmental impact and the efficiency of energy use in society. (3) To estimate final-to-useful exergy conversion efficiencies, standard thermodynamic definitions should be used because the use of proxies fails to distinguish between increases in exergy efficiency and increases in the efficiency of providing energy services. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
energy efficiency, exergy accounting, energy end-uses, societal exergy metabolism
in
Ecological Economics
volume
141
pages
11 - 21
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:85019568068
  • wos:000410013200002
ISSN
0921-8009
DOI
10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.05.020
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
145b8676-91fb-4439-aaeb-8d89ad52f821
date added to LUP
2017-05-15 00:06:50
date last changed
2018-07-08 04:23:36
@article{145b8676-91fb-4439-aaeb-8d89ad52f821,
  abstract     = {Studies of societal exergy use have the common aim of tracing the flow of exergy along society, and are used to gain insights into the efficiency of energy use and linkages to economic growth. However, their methodological approaches vary greatly, with significant impacts on results. Therefore, we make a review of past studies to identify, synthesize and discuss methodological differences, to contribute to a more consistent and robust approach to societal exergy accounting. Issues that should be taken into account when making methodological options are discussed and key insights are presented: (1) For mapping of primary inputs and useful exergy categories, the inclusion of all natural resources is more consistent but it has the cost of not being able to distinguish the various energy end-uses in the production of materials. (2) To estimate primary electricity, none of the methods currently used is able to capture simultaneously the efficiency of the renewable energy sector, the environmental impact and the efficiency of energy use in society. (3) To estimate final-to-useful exergy conversion efficiencies, standard thermodynamic definitions should be used because the use of proxies fails to distinguish between increases in exergy efficiency and increases in the efficiency of providing energy services.},
  author       = {Sousa, Tânia and Brockway, Paul and Cullen, Jonathan M. and Henriques, Sofia and Miller, Jack  and Serrenho, Andre Cabrera and Domingos, Tiago},
  issn         = {0921-8009},
  keyword      = {energy efficiency,exergy accounting,energy end-uses,societal exergy metabolism},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {11--21},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Ecological Economics},
  title        = {The need for robust, consistent methods in societal exergy accounting},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.05.020},
  volume       = {141},
  year         = {2017},
}