Life cycle assessment of ocean energy technologies: A systematic review

María Guadalupe Paredes, Alejandro Padilla-Rivera, Leonor Patricia Güereca

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

The increase of greenhouse gases (GHG) generated by the burning of fossil fuels has been recognized as one of the main causes of climate change (CC). Different countries of the world have developed new policies on national energy security directed to the use of renewable energies mainly, ocean energy being one of them. The implementation of ocean energy is increasing worldwide. However, the use of these technologies is not exempt from the generation of potential environmental impacts throughout their life cycle. In this context, life cycle assessment (LCA) is a holistic approach used to evaluate the environmental impacts of a product or system throughout its entire life cycle. LCA studies need to be conducted to foster the development of ocean energy technologies (OET) in sustainable management. In this paper, a systematic review was conducted and 18 LCA studies of OET were analyzed. Most of the LCA studies are focused on wave and tidal energy. CC is the most relevant impact category evaluated, which is generated mostly by raw material extraction, manufacturing stage and shipping operations. Finally, the critical stages of the systems evaluated were identified, together with, the opportunity areas to promote an environmental management for ocean energy developers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number322
JournalJournal of Marine Science and Engineering
Volume7
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2019

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Life cycle
life cycle
ocean
energy
Climate change
Environmental impact
environmental impact
Energy security
climate change
Environmental management
holistic approach
Freight transportation
shipping
Fossil fuels
Greenhouse gases
environmental management
fossil fuel
energy technology
Raw materials
greenhouse gas

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ocean Engineering

Cite this

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abstract = "The increase of greenhouse gases (GHG) generated by the burning of fossil fuels has been recognized as one of the main causes of climate change (CC). Different countries of the world have developed new policies on national energy security directed to the use of renewable energies mainly, ocean energy being one of them. The implementation of ocean energy is increasing worldwide. However, the use of these technologies is not exempt from the generation of potential environmental impacts throughout their life cycle. In this context, life cycle assessment (LCA) is a holistic approach used to evaluate the environmental impacts of a product or system throughout its entire life cycle. LCA studies need to be conducted to foster the development of ocean energy technologies (OET) in sustainable management. In this paper, a systematic review was conducted and 18 LCA studies of OET were analyzed. Most of the LCA studies are focused on wave and tidal energy. CC is the most relevant impact category evaluated, which is generated mostly by raw material extraction, manufacturing stage and shipping operations. Finally, the critical stages of the systems evaluated were identified, together with, the opportunity areas to promote an environmental management for ocean energy developers.",
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Life cycle assessment of ocean energy technologies : A systematic review. / Paredes, María Guadalupe; Padilla-Rivera, Alejandro; Güereca, Leonor Patricia.

In: Journal of Marine Science and Engineering, Vol. 7, No. 9, 322, 01.09.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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AU - Güereca, Leonor Patricia

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