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Journal of Environmental Accounting and Management
António Mendes Lopes (editor), Jiazhong Zhang(editor)
António Mendes Lopes (editor)

University of Porto, Portugal


Jiazhong Zhang (editor)

School of Energy and Power Engineering, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an, Shaanxi Province 710049, China

Fax: +86 29 82668723 Email:

Life cycle assessment-based urban energy structure optimization: Model estab-lishment and scenario analysis

Journal of Environmental Accounting and Management 1(2) (2013) 129--145 | DOI:10.5890/JEAM.2013.05.003

Chen Chen; Meirong Su

State Key Joint Laboratory of Environment Simulation and Pollution Control, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China

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Energy structure optimization is vital for urban sustainable development. In this study, a multi-objective model is developed to allocate various energy resources in various urban sectors under various scenarios, aiming to minimize the total system cost, environmental impact, and energy consumption. The environmental impact incurred during the energy lifecycle, including energy production, transportation, and consumption, is evaluated using the lifecycle assessment method. The economic loss of environmental pollution during the energy lifecycle is also incorporated in the economic objective. The model is applied to Beijing, in which four energy resources (coal, oil, natural gas, and electricity) are distributed among six sectors (agriculture, industry, construction, transportation, commerce, and household). Three scenarios are formulated from the base case scenario: i.e., the energy structure adjustment scenario, the energy structure adjustment with low carbon emission scenario, and the energy structure adjustment with low carbon emission and industrial structure adjustment scenario. The results indicate a decline in the proportion of coal to total energy consumption and an increase in the corresponding proportion for the other resources. It is concluded that further increasing the utilization of natural gas and electricity while reducing coal consumption, controlling energy consumption in industry, and strengthening carbon emission restrictions will help achieve more effective and eco-friendly energy use patterns based on a comparison of the environmental impact and economic loss of pollution under all scenarios. The optimization model could provide support for the planning and management of urban energy systems.


Financial support is provided by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 40901269, 41101564), the National Science Foundation for Innovative Research Group (No. 51121003), and the China Postdoctoral Special Foundation (Grant No. 201003063).


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