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Renewable vs. traditional energy management solutions - A Finnish hospital facility case

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)539-545
Number of pages7
JournalRenewable Energy
Volume57
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2013
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Abstract

This article discusses the current price situation in the Finnish energy market. The aim of the study was to calculate the life-cycle costs (LCC) of 12 energy management systems and compare the prices. Surprisingly, the most polluting and commonly used solution, combination of district heating and grid electricity, was also the most expensive solution. The main reason for this is the increase in energy prices in Finland in the twenty-first century. According to the calculations, when considering a facility the size of the Espoo Hospital, the most affordable solutions were biogas energy, wood chip heating and ground source heating. The differences were relatively small between all solutions other than biogas. Biogas energy is by far the most affordable solution. However, it is only suitable for large-scale projects and some uncertainty risk has to be added because the system is not yet commonly used. Regarding the other unorthodox systems, solar electricity was the most expensive method; similar to the situation with snow storage cooling, which needs to entail certain societal benefits for it to be cost-effective. A sensitivity analysis was also conducted using four variations; however, significant differences to the original calculations were not discovered.

Keywords

  • Economical comparison, Energy management, Life-cycle cost, Renewable energy