Life cycle assessment of waste-to-hydrogen systems for fuel cell electric buses in Glasgow, Scotland

Lui, J., Sloan, W. , Paul, M. C. , Flynn, D. and You, S. (2022) Life cycle assessment of waste-to-hydrogen systems for fuel cell electric buses in Glasgow, Scotland. Bioresource Technology, 359, 127464. (doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2022.127464) (PMID:35700893)

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Waste-to-hydrogen (WtH) technologies are proposed as a dual-purpose method for simultaneous non-fossil-fuel based hydrogen production and sustainable waste management. This work applied the life cycle assessment approach to evaluate the carbon saving potential of two main WtH technologies (gasification and fermentation) in comparison to the conventional hydrogen production method of steam methane reforming (SMR) to power fuel cell electric buses in Glasgow. It was shown that WtH technologies could reduce <55% of CO2-eq emissions per kg H2 compared to SMR. Gasification treating municipal solid waste and waste wood had global warming potentials of 4.99 and 4.11 kg CO2-eq/kg H2 respectively, which were lower than dark fermentation treating wet waste at 6.6 kg CO2-eq/kg H2 and combined dark and photo fermentation at 6.4 kg CO2-eq/kg H2. The distance emissions of WtH-based electric fuel cell bus scenarios were 0.33-0.44 kg CO2-eq/km as compared to 0.89 kg CO2-eq/km for the SMR-based scenario.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:The authors would like to acknowledge the financial support from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Studentship (EP/N509668/1) and Programme Grant (EP/V030515/1). Siming You would like to thank the funding support from the Royal Society (RGS\R1\211358) and UK Supergen Bioenergy Hub (RR 2022_10).
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:You, Dr Siming and Paul, Professor Manosh and Lui, Ms Jade and Flynn, Professor David and Sloan, Professor William
Authors: Lui, J., Sloan, W., Paul, M. C., Flynn, D., and You, S.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Infrastructure and Environment
College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Systems Power and Energy
Journal Name:Bioresource Technology
ISSN (Online):1873-2976
Published Online:11 June 2022
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2022 The Authors
First Published:First published in Bioresource Technology 359: 127464
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons licence

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
172865EPSRC DTP 16/17 and 17/18Mary Beth KneafseyEngineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)EP/N509668/1Research and Innovation Services
309846Decentralised water technologiesWilliam SloanEngineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)EP/V030515/1ENG - Infrastructure & Environment
313502Microwave-assisted Integration of Pyrolysis and Anaerobic Digestion for Efficient Biofuel Generation from Organic Waste (MaPAD)Siming YouThe Royal Society (ROYSOC)RGS-R1-211358ENG - Systems Power & Energy