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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Renewable Energy, Infrastructure and GHG Implication of Electrified Transportation: Metro Vancouver Case Study

  • Author(s): Taiebat, Morteza;
  • Talebian, Hoda;
  • Sassani, Farrokh;
  • Mérida, Walter
  • et al.

This study is aimed to assess the fleet composition for the new portion of light and medium duty vehicles (LMDV) in Metro Vancouver forecasted for the year 2020. Accordingly, the analysis evaluates the sensitivity of the regional electricity demand on transportation electrification policies. Considering electricity and hydrogen as transportation infrastructures, sixteen scenarios of zero tailpipe emission Electric Vehicle (EV) penetration in the new fleet are investigated. The study assesses the efficiency of EV technologies, quantifies energy demand for the electric transportation, and summarizes the implications of using renewable electricity to power the transportation sector.

The analysis shows that wind energy is the superior resource in terms of life cycle Greenhouse Gases (GHGs). The life cycle GHGs of electricity production via wind turbines ranges from 390-3000 tonnes yr- 1 and for photovoltaic cells from 1300-9900 tonnes yr-1 of CO2eq across the scenarios. Furthermore, it is observed that 92% to 96% of life cycle greenhouse emissions could be reduced by deploying zero emission vehicles, which utilize solar or wind energy as a renewable resource. In this category, battery electric vehicles enable larger energy efficiency. Moreover, the results show that in order to respond to FCEV demand by 2020, the number of on-site hydrogen refueling stations should vary between 3 and 62, across different scenarios. The electricity demand to power these stations ranges from 32 to 248 GWh yr-1 which translates to annual production of 5 to 37 wind turbines with 2.24 MW of rated capacity, or alternatively 0.2 to 1.6 km2 of photovoltaic cell surface.

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