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Greenhouse Gas Emissions per kWh for Site Fuels

Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 October 2017 12:40





Greenhouse Gas Emissions per kWh for Site Fuels
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Greenhouse Gas Emissions per kWh for Site Fuels

The greenhouse gas emissions per kWh for the main fuels on this site. The values are used in all CO2e calculations throughout.

Green house gas emissions data from burning fossil fuels, like natural gas or heating oil is relatively easy to come but can be confusing. To get the full picture you cannot just report CO2 emissions, since other greenhouse gasses are emitted as fuels are burned or electricity generated. To do this we use the Kg CO2e value, this adds the carbon dioxide equivalent of those other gases to the Kg CO2, take a look here for more on this. In addition the kg CO2e of supplying the fuels and emissions attributed to grid losses need to be included. Fuel supply chain values are sometimes called WTT (Well to Tank values)

We have used the reference documents at the bottom of the page. Government has an irritating habit of archiving old document from previous administrations so we have downloaded the documents and added them to our server so that if this happens we still have the reference, these are also at the bootom of the page

For fuels like wood sensible data is much more tricky as you have the argument that wood and other bio fuels are re-grown acting as carbon sinks and are close to carbon neutral. For the moment this site will avoid these fuels when considering CO2 emissions. The main figures used in the site are in the table.

Source Emissions kg CO2e / kWh used Supply Chain Emissions kg CO2e / kWh Total kg CO2e / kWh
Natural Gas 0.184 0.028 0.21
Heating Oil 0.245 0.05 0.3
LPG 0.215 0.029 0.24
UK Grid N/A N/A 0.367

The table includes the latest emissions data for the UK National Grid, this is updated once a year. The number is an average CO2e emission value for the whole year and it is reducing each year at the moment; the closure of some of the old coal fired power stations in the UK and the move to more renewables plays a part in this. If you scan the internet the values given on all but a few sites are inaccurate and based on emissions often 10 years ago, a lot has changed. As stated above the data also includes supply and transmission losses.

We have taken this data from www.earth.org.uk which is up to date, well researched but is a bit unclear. It is particularly unclear about the units kg CO2e but if you read through the text, they are reporting the effective greenhouse gas emissions not just kg CO2. They also shows how emissions fluctuate throughout the day and illustrates that the time of day you choose to wash your clothes for example can impact on UK CO2 emissions.

Below is the trend for Carbon Dioxide emissions since 2009 from the national Grid, it is very interesting and you can see a clear reduction.

I have found another source of data for this information and I am not sure which to use. This gives a slightly different picture.

Some Useful links

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/553488/2016_methodology_paper_Final_V01-00.pdf
www.earth.org.uk
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/greenhouse-gas-reporting-conversion-factors-2016

Locally Stored Reference Material

2016_methodology_paper_Final_V01-00.pdf
ghg-conversion-factors-2016update_MASTER__links_removed__DECC_Standard_Set.xls

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