The role of biomass to replace fossil fuels in a regional energy system - the case of West Sweden
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2016

This paper analyses and discusses the potential role of biomass in the energy supply for two counties in the West of Sweden. More specifically this work analysis the role of biomass for a scenario that meets the CO2 emission reduction targets up to year 2050, i.e. the role of biomass is estimated as part of an overall emission reduction portfolio (other renewables, less energy use in industry and in the building stock, measures in the transportation sector and CCS in the industry). The region follows the Swedish national target for GHG-emissions, namely zero net emissions by 2050 and, thus, this is the main motivation for enhancing the use of renewables including biomass. The region also complies with the national target of a transport sector independent of fossil fuels by 2030. It is concluded that the region could double its production capacity of solid biomass to 2030 – from a current level of 6TWh to 12 TWh. Modelling of the electricity sector in the region indicates that bio-based electricity generation in CHPs could, in a cost-efficient way, be raised from 1.2 TWh in 2012 to between 2.2 and 3.7 TWh in 2050 and that generation of DH in CHPs would increase from around 4 TWh in 2012 (fossil plus bio/waste) to between 4.5 and 7.5 TWh in 2050 (bio/waste only). Assuming a conversion efficiency of 0.35 for bio-based electricity generation imply a biomass consumption in 2050 ranging from 6.3 to 10.6 TWh for the two scenarios investigated. In both cases, this is well below the production potential for biomass within the region. For the transport sector it is shown in order for the region to reach zero CO2 emissions by 2050, that a series of actions will be required to significantly reduce demand in combination with use of electricity and biofuels. It is estimated that the transport sector in the region will consume some 12.8 TWh biomass annually from 2030 onwards. It is also concluded that such a transformation is unlikely to occur only in the West of Sweden but rather it can be expected that such a development in West Sweden will be part of an overall European transformation of the transport sector. It is concluded that total biomass consumption in the region could potentially more than triple from 14 TWh in 2010 to 48 TWh in 2040, considering the electricity and transport sectors and under the assumption that all heat (DH and industrial heat) should be generated by biomass. Yet, assuming that biomass also replace the fossil based raw materials used by the industry in the region this would raise demand to more than 170 TWh from 2040 onwards, which would imply significant logistical challenges and which can be compared with the current 132 TWh total Swedish biomass supply for energy purposes.

CO2-emission reduction targets.

fossil fuels

system perspective


West Sweden


Jan Kjärstad

Chalmers, Energi och miljö, Energiteknik

Filip Johnsson

Chalmers, Energi och miljö, Energiteknik

Thermal Science

0354-9836 (ISSN)

Vol. 20 4 1023-1036


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