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Impact of bus electrification on carbon emissions: the case of Stockholm
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Energy Technology, Energy and Climate Studies, ECS.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2896-8841
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA).
Maastricht University.
Maastricht University.
Show others and affiliations
(English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
Abstract [en]

This paper focuses on the potential impact of various options for decarbonization of public bus transport in Stockholm, with particular attention to electrification. An optimization model is used for locating electric bus chargers and estimating the associated carbon emissions, using a life cycle perceptive and various implementation scenarios. Emissions associated with fuels and batteries of electric powertrains are considered to be the two main factors affecting carbon emissions. The model is applied to the city of Stockholm, Sweden. The results show that, although higher battery capacities could help electrify more routes of the city’s bus network, this does not necessarily lead to a reduction of the total emissions. The results show the lowest climate change impact occurring when electric buses use batteries with a capacity of 120 kWh. The fuel choices influence significantly the environmental impact of a bus network. For example, the use of electricity is a better choice than first generation biofuels from a carbon emission perspective. However, the use of second generation biofuels, such as Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO), can directly compete with the Nordic electricity mix. Among all fuel options, certified renewable electricity has the lowest impact. The analysis also shows that electrification couldbe beneficial for local pollutant reduction in Stockholm inner city even though the local emissions of publictransport are much lower than emissions from private transport.

National Category
Energy Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-226519OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-226519DiVA, id: diva2:1198829
Funder
Integrated Transport Research Lab (ITRL)Swedish Energy Agency
Note

QC 20180420

Available from: 2018-04-18 Created: 2018-04-18 Last updated: 2018-04-20Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Towards electrified public bus transport: The case of Stockholm
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Towards electrified public bus transport: The case of Stockholm
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis addresses the challenge of road transport electrification using a systems approach for the particular context of Stockholm’s public transport system. The objective is to identify the benefits of large-scale bus electrification on energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions, as well as the cost and planning considerations required for achieving such a shift. Quantitative and qualitative methods are deployed for answering the research questions, including the development and use of an optimisation model, survey research, and interviews. 

The results of the optimisation model developed for this thesis show that an optimal system configuration is obtained with a combination of electricity and biodiesel. The high energy efficiency of electric buses would lead to a significant reduction of energy consumption in Stockholm, even if not all bus routes in the network are electrified. Although larger battery capacities could support the electrification of more bus routes, this does not necessarily lead to lower environmental impact. In any case, electricity from renewable sources should be used to maximise emission reductions. 

The results also show that the annual costs necessary to invest in electric buses can be balanced by lower fuel costs. An effective utilisation of the charging infrastructure is of high priority in order to justify the costs of the required investments. The model results confirm the benefits of creating a dense initial network of charging stations in the inner city’s public transport hubs, which would facilitate the electrification of multiple routes and high infrastructure utilisation at lower costs. 

The survey and interviews with stakeholders indicate that multiple issues affect the choice of charging technology, not just costs. Compatibility, reliability, bus dwell time, as well as weather conditions and visual impact are some of the additional aspects taken into account. The introduction of electricity tax exemption for electric buses, the expansion of the electric bus premium to include private stakeholders, as well as the expansion of infrastructure investment subsidy programmes are among the policy instruments suggested for assisting a faster introduction of electric buses into Stockholm’s public transport system. 

Although the focus is on Stockholm, the conclusions of this work can be applicable to other cities in Sweden and around the world, which also face the challenge of making public transport a more sustainable option.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2018. p. 77
Series
TRITA-ECS Report ; TRITA-ECS Report 18/02
Keywords
electric bus; charging infrastructure; optimisation; public transport; fossil-free; transport planning; Sweden
National Category
Energy Engineering
Research subject
Energy Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-226518 (URN)978-91-7729-742-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-05-16, E2, Lindstedtsvägen 3, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Energy AgencyThe Swedish Knowledge Centre for Renewable Transportation Fuels (f3)Integrated Transport Research Lab (ITRL)
Available from: 2018-04-19 Created: 2018-04-18 Last updated: 2018-05-15Bibliographically approved

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