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A multicriteria approach to evaluate district heating system options


  • Ghafghazi, S.
  • Sowlati, T.
  • Sokhansanj, S.
  • Melin, S.


District energy systems, in which renewable energy sources may be utilized, are centralized systems to provide energy to residential and commercial buildings. The aim of this paper is to evaluate and rank energy sources available for a case of district heating system in Vancouver, Canada, based on multiple criteria and the view points of different stakeholders, and to show how communication would affect the ranking of alternatives. The available energy sources are natural gas, biomass (wood pellets), sewer heat, and geothermal heat. The evaluation criteria include GHG emissions, particulate matter emissions, maturity of technology, traffic load, and local source. In order to rank the energy options the PROMETHEE method is used. In this paper, two different scenarios were developed to indicate how the communication between the stakeholders would affect their preferences about criteria weights and would change the ranking of alternatives. The result of this study shows that without communication the best energy source for the considered district energy system is different for different stakeholders. While, addressing concerns through efficient communication would result in a general consensus. In this case, wood pellet is the best energy alternative for all the stakeholders.

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  • Ghafghazi, S. & Sowlati, T. & Sokhansanj, S. & Melin, S., 2010. "A multicriteria approach to evaluate district heating system options," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 87(4), pages 1134-1140, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:appene:v:87:y:2010:i:4:p:1134-1140

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    1. Grujić, Miodrag & Ivezić, Dejan & Živković, Marija, 2014. "Application of multi-criteria decision-making model for choice of the optimal solution for meeting heat demand in the centralized supply system in Belgrade," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 341-350.
    2. Ishizaka, Alessio & Siraj, Sajid & Nemery, Philippe, 2016. "Which energy mix for the UK (United Kingdom)? An evolutive descriptive mapping with the integrated GAIA (graphical analysis for interactive aid)–AHP (analytic hierarchy process) visualization tool," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 602-611.
    3. Mezősi, András & Beöthy, Ákos & Kácsor, Enikő & Törőcsik, Ágnes, 2016. "A magyarországi távhő-szabályozás modellezése. A megújuló energiára alapozott hőtermelés
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    4. Dombi, Mihály & Kuti, István & Balogh, Péter, 2014. "Sustainability assessment of renewable power and heat generation technologies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 264-271.
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    8. Chang, Pao-Long & Hsu, Chiung-Wen & Lin, Chiu-Yue, 2012. "Assessment of hydrogen fuel cell applications using fuzzy multiple-criteria decision making method," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 93-99.
    9. Billig, Eric & Thrän, Daniela, 2016. "Evaluation of biomethane technologies in Europe – Technical concepts under the scope of a Delphi-Survey embedded in a multi-criteria analysis," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 1176-1186.
    10. Doukas, Haris, 2013. "Modelling of linguistic variables in multicriteria energy policy support," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 227(2), pages 227-238.
    11. Jagoda, Kalinga & Lonseth, Robert & Lonseth, Adam & Jackman, Tom, 2011. "Development and commercialization of renewable energy technologies in Canada: An innovation system perspective," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 1266-1271.
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    14. Prasanna, U.R. & Umanand, L., 2011. "Modeling and design of a solar thermal system for hybrid cooking application," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 88(5), pages 1740-1755, May.
    15. Brand, Lisa & Calvén, Alexandra & Englund, Jessica & Landersjö, Henrik & Lauenburg, Patrick, 2014. "Smart district heating networks – A simulation study of prosumers’ impact on technical parameters in distribution networks," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 129(C), pages 39-48.
    16. Vučijak, B. & Kupusović, T. & Midžić-Kurtagić, S. & Ćerić, A., 2013. "Applicability of multicriteria decision aid to sustainable hydropower," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 261-267.
    17. Sola, Antonio Vanderley Herrero & Mota, Caroline Maria de Miranda & Kovaleski, João Luiz, 2011. "A model for improving energy efficiency in industrial motor system using multicriteria analysis," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 3645-3654, June.
    18. Colmenar-Santos, Antonio & Rosales-Asensio, Enrique & Borge-Diez, David & Collado-Fernández, Eduardo, 2016. "Evaluation of the cost of using power plant reject heat in low-temperature district heating and cooling networks," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 162(C), pages 892-907.
    19. Ziemele, Jelena & Pakere, Ieva & Blumberga, Dagnija, 2016. "The future competitiveness of the non-Emissions Trading Scheme district heating systems in the Baltic States," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 162(C), pages 1579-1585.
    20. Wen, Fenghua & Gong, Xu & Cai, Shenghua, 2016. "Forecasting the volatility of crude oil futures using HAR-type models with structural breaks," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 400-413.
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    24. Marinakis, Vangelis & Doukas, Haris & Xidonas, Panos & Zopounidis, Constantin, 2017. "Multicriteria decision support in local energy planning: An evaluation of alternative scenarios for the Sustainable Energy Action Plan," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 69(C), pages 1-16.
    25. Prasanna, U.R. & Umanand, L., 2011. "Optimization and design of energy transport system for solar cooking application," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 242-251, January.


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