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Deriving an Improved Dynamic EROI to Provide Better Information for Energy Planners


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  • Ioannis N. Kessides

    (The World Bank, 1818 H Street, NW, Washington, DC 20433, USA)

  • David C. Wade

    (Argonne National Laboratory, 9700 S. Cass Avenue, Argonne, IL 60439, USA)

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    The two most frequently quantified metrics of net energy analysis–the energy return on (energy) investment and the energy payback period–do not capture the growth rate potential of an energy supply infrastructure. This is because the analysis underlying these metrics is essentially static–all energy inputs and outputs are treated the same, regardless of where they occur in the life cycle of the infrastructure. We develop a dynamic energy analysis framework to model the growth potential of alternative electricity supply infrastructures. An additional figure of merit, the infrastructure doubling time, is introduced. This metric highlights the critical importance of the time phasing of the initial energy investment for emplacing a given infrastructure, as opposed to the ongoing O&M energy expenditures, for the infrastructure’s growth potential. The doubling time metric also captures the influence of capacity factor, licensing and construction time lags.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by MDPI, Open Access Journal in its journal Sustainability.

    Volume (Year): 3 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 12 (December)
    Pages: 2339-2357

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    Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:3:y:2011:i:12:p:2339-2357:d:15147

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    Related research

    Keywords: doubling time; dynamic EROI; sustainability; net energy;

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    1. Utamura, Motoaki, 2005. "Analytical model of carbon dioxide emission with energy payback effect," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 2073-2088.
    2. Berndt, Ernst R., 1982. "From technocracy to net energy analysis : engineers, economists and recurring energy theories of value," Working papers 1353-82., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    3. Mathur, Jyotirmay & Bansal, Narendra Kumar & Wagner, Hermann-Joseph, 2004. "Dynamic energy analysis to assess maximum growth rates in developing power generation capacity: case study of India," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 281-287, January.
    4. Gagnon, Luc, 2008. "Civilisation and energy payback," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(9), pages 3317-3322, September.
    5. Kubiszewski, Ida & Cleveland, Cutler J. & Endres, Peter K., 2010. "Meta-analysis of net energy return for wind power systems," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 218-225.
    6. Charles A. S. Hall & Stephen Balogh & David J.R. Murphy, 2009. "What is the Minimum EROI that a Sustainable Society Must Have?," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 2(1), pages 25-47, January.
    7. Munro, John H., 2002. "Industrial energy from water-mills in the European economy, 5th to 18th Centuries: the limitations of power," MPRA Paper 11027, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jun 2002.
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