Authors: Karl R. Haapala; Preedanood Prempreeda
Addresses: School of Mechanical, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, Oregon State University, 204 Rogers Hall, Corvallis, OR, 97331, USA ' School of Mechanical, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, Oregon State University, 204 Rogers Hall, Corvallis, OR, 97331, USA
Abstract: Wind turbines produce energy with virtually no emissions, however, there are environmental impacts associated with their manufacture, installation, and end of life. The work presented examines life cycle environmental impacts of two 2.0 MW wind turbines. Manufacturing, transport, installation, maintenance, and end of life have been considered for both models and are compared using the ReCiPe 2008 impact assessment method. In addition, energy payback analysis was conducted based on the cumulative energy demand and the energy produced by the wind turbines over 20 years. Life cycle assessment revealed that environmental impacts are concentrated in the manufacturing stage, which accounts for 78% of impacts. The energy payback period for the two turbine models are found to be 5.2 and 6.4 months, respectively. Based on the assumptions made, the results of this study can be used to conduct an environmental analysis of a representative wind park to be located in the US Pacific Northwest.
Keywords: life cycle assessment; LCA; wind turbines; wind parks; environmental impact; energy payback; sustainable manufacturing; transport; installation; maintenance; end of life; wind energy; wind power.
International Journal of Sustainable Manufacturing, 2014 Vol.3 No.2, pp.170 - 185
Available online: 09 Jun 2014Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article