Economic, Environmental and Energy Life-Cycle Assessment of Coal Conversion to Automotive Fuels in China
A life-cycle assessment (LCA) has been developed to help compare the economic, environmental and energy (EEE) impacts of converting coal to automotive fuels in China. This model was used to evaluate the total economic cost to the customer, the effect on the local and global environments, and the energy efficiencies for each fuel option. It provides a total accounting for each step in the life cycle process including the mining and transportation of coal, the conversion of coal to fuel, fuel distribution, all materials and manufacturing processes used to produce a vehicle, and vehicle operation over the life of the vehicle. The seven fuel scenarios evaluated in this study include methanol from coal, byproduct methanol from coal, methanol from methane, methanol from coke oven gas, gasoline from coal, electricity from coal, and petroleum to gasoline and diesel. The LCA results for all fuels were compared to gasoline as a baseline case.