CO2 Intensities and Primary Energy Factors in the Future European Electricity System

Sam Hamels
2021 Energies  
The European Union strives for sharp reductions in both CO2 emissions as well as primary energy use. Electricity consuming technologies are becoming increasingly important in this context, due to the ongoing electrification of transport and heating services. To correctly evaluate these technologies, conversion factors are needed—namely CO2 intensities and primary energy factors (PEFs). However, this evaluation is hindered by the unavailability of a high-quality database of conversion factor
more » ... es. Ideally, such a database has a broad geographical scope, a high temporal resolution and considers cross-country exchanges of electricity as well as future evolutions in the electricity mix. In this paper, a state-of-the-art unit commitment economic dispatch model of the European electricity system is developed and a flow-tracing technique is innovatively applied to future scenarios (2025–2040)—to generate such a database and make it publicly available. Important dynamics are revealed, including an overall decrease in conversion factor values as well as considerable temporal variability at both the seasonal and hourly level. Furthermore, the importance of taking into account imports and carefully considering the calculation methodology for PEFs are both confirmed. Future estimates of the CO2 emissions and primary energy use associated with individual electrical loads can be meaningfully improved by taking into account these dynamics.
doi:10.3390/en14082165 fatcat:lrhgnko7vvg4biuslzvtkfbjii