ognizant Communication Corporation

A Journal of Science Serving Legislative, Regulatory, and Judicial Systems
Human Advancement · Environmental Protection  · Industrial Development

Volume 8, Numbers 4-6

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 141-148
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Copyright © 2002 Cognizant Comm. Corp.
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The Norwegian CO2-Infrastructure Initiative - The Economics and Socioeconomics of Using CO2 for Enhanced Oil Recovery in the North Sea Basin

Carl-W. Hustad
CO2- Norway AS, Kongsberg, Norway
Geir Bjønnes
Norwegian School of Management BI, Sandvika, Norway

This paper investigates the feasibility of an integrated system for capture and sequestration of CO2 in combination with enhanced oil recovery in the North Sea. Initially, an economic model was developed to minimize overall CO2 sequestration costs. The model considers parameters such as capital investment; technology research and development; oil reservoir characteristics; and "after-use" for existing oil facilities. It is also intended to model future industrial activity, energy requirements, and CO2 mitigation from on- and offshore industrial complexes. All of these, together With fluctuating energy prices and eventual cost of using the Kyoto-like flexible mechanisms, will influence the commercial feasibility of a future CO2 infrastructure development. Eventually, the economic model will also be extended to consider handling CO2 emissions from the industrialized regions bordering on the North Sea Basin in Northern Europe. This paper also addresses the issue of tackling carbon management in a more holistic manner. Relevant drivers include technology costs; market mechanisms (CO2 trading, fiscal incentives, legislation); international consensus; and public perceptions. Within this context, this paper focuses on some of the "longer-term" benefits associated with: 1) potential for technology diversification; 2) development of "sustainable" industries; 3) competitive benefits attributable to possible industrial clustering; 4) benefits of including die total environmental cost in the balance-sheet; 5) the implementation of constructive-but coercive-legislation and fiscal measures; and 6) requirements for developing an ajour judicial framework. All of these socioeconomic considerations can help the Norwegian industry develop a practical and commercial response to the emerging concern regarding greenhouse gas emissions and global climate change.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 149-158
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Coal Processing Plants for Hydrogen Production With CO2 Capture

Michael D. Rutkowski, Michael R. DeLallo, and Michael G. Klett
Parsons Infrastructure & Technology Group Inc., Wyomissing, PA
Joseph S. Badin
Energetics, Incorporated, Columbia, MD
Jerome R. Temchin
U.S. Department of Energy, Washington, DC

This paper discusses the background and performance characteristics of inorganic membranes used in a hydrogen separation device (HSD) to effectively promote the shift of CO production during the reaction of water with CO2 and separate the resulting hydrogen from CO and CO2. Various conceptual plant designs to produce hydrogen from coal utilizing the inorganic membrane in a high-temperature HSD are presented along with cost estimates and an economic assessment. The plants produce separate CO2 and hydrogen streams with sulfuric acid as a by-product. For comparative purposes and to arrive at a figure of merit for the plant design, an effective thermal efficiency was derived for the plant performance based on the thermal value of hydrogen and power produced. By comparing the conceptual designs, economics, and end-use scenarios for the decarbonized fuel plants with similarly-sized plants producing hydrogen from conventional processes, it has been shown that the potential exists for producing and delivering economically competitive hydrogen from coal.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 159-166
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Biomass for Domestic Small-Scale Heating; Electricity as Energy Carrier Versus Small-Scale Combustion Evaluated by Resource Efficiency and Externalities

Sven-Olov Ericson* and Marie Anheden
Vattenfall Utveckling AB, Stockholm, Sweden

Bioenergy contributes to greenhouse gas abatement by the efficiency of its chain from primary resources to final energy service. This efficiency has been analyzed for four different fuel chains: local use of fuel wood; distributed use of wood pellets; electric power generated from biomass in power plants or combined heat; and power used for local heating with electric heat pumps. The chains have been analyzed from forest to final small-scale heating service. The result is presented as systems efficiency indicating how much fuel oil is replaced per unit of primary biomass resource. The emissions and resources used in the full fuel chains are calculated based on today's best available technologies. The externalities from the emissions have been estimated by the EcoSense model in the European Union ExternE project. The result is related to the total direct costs of the different fuel chains. The results indicate that electricity is a preferred energy carrier for small-scale domestic heating if the full fuel cycle is taken into account and if urban air quality is a priority. The conclusion is valid for all dispersed heating services for which an efficient electric heat pump is a realistic alternative. For densely developed urban areas, district heating - preferentially integrating combined heat and power - is superior from a systems efficiency point of view.

*Presently at Swedish Ministry of Industry

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 167-180
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Life-Cycle Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

David E. Shropshire
Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID

In anticipation of stricter emissions standards as a result of President Clinton's executive order in 1999 to improve energy efficiency, researchers at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) have studied greenhouse gas emissions at the INEEL. Greenhouse gases are believed to trap heat in the atmosphere just as a greenhouse traps heat in its confines-hence the name greenhouse gas. Greenhouse gas at the INEEL is predominantly carbon dioxide released from coal-, oil-, and natural-gas-fired operations. The INEEL also assumes responsibility for greenhouse gas from fossil-fuel-fired generating plants that provide the national laboratory with electricity. Emissions at or claimed by the INEEL are declining, but achieving reduction goals will require continued reduction efforts. Researchers studied the extent and fluctuations of greenhouse gas - in other words, the full life cycle of the emissions - and established a baseline of those emissions for 1990. The researchers then determined emissions trends in subsequent years from 1991-1998. Surprisingly, results reveal that the level of greenhouse gas increases or decreases is in lock step with increases and decreases of hydropower, which actually hinges on precipitation levels. Future emissions studies need to consider the impact on emissions levels of energy alternatives such as renewable energy, low-emission fuels, biofuels, and carbon sequestration. These studies should also predetermine the cost-effectiveness of emission-reduction alternatives.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 181-192
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The Impact of Ozone and Other Limitations on the Crop Productivity Response to CO2

E. L. Fiscus, J. E. Miller, F. L. Booker, and A. S. Heagle
U.S. Department of Agriculture/Agricultural Research Service, Raleigh, NC
C. D. Reid
Department of Biology, Duke University, Durham, NC

Numerous studies indicate that increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations might enhance the productivity of current cropping systems. However, it appears that this productivity benefit may, in some cases, be the result of amelioration of the effects of co-occurring stresses by elevated CO2. In a series of experiments conducted in open-top field chambers over a period of 6 years using cotton, rice, soybean, and wheat, it was demonstrated that the crop yield response to doubled CO2 concentration was highly dependent on the co-occurring concentration of the air pollutant O3. Yield responses to elevated CO2 ranged from losses of 26% to increases up to about 40% in charcoal filtered air. However, plants grown under O3 stress showed yield increases in response to CO2 of up to 140%. Increased vegetative biomass in elevated CO2 treatments was consistently observed, but this extra biomass was not always translated into increased economic yield. Elevated CO2 concentrations did, however, ameliorate the average 27% yield suppression caused by pollutant O3, primarily through reducing leaf conductance and limiting the O3 flux into leaves. The amelioration of O3 damage and consequent higher yields would appear to be a direct stimulation of productivity by CO2 if there was no recognition of extant O3 pollution during the experiment. The same misperception might arise in the case of unrecognized or unmonitored water or nutrient stress conditions. We conclude that the effects of background levels of air pollutants and other environmental stresses should be included in the calculations used to predict crop productivity in a future atmosphere containing higher CO2 concentrations.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 193-204
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A Comprehensive Life Cycle Analysis of a Biomass Energy System

Kiyoshi Dowaki and Hisashi Ishitani
Department of GeoSystem Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Ryuji Matsuhashi
Department of Environmental Studies, Faculty of Frontier Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Nalish Sam
Papua New Guinea Forest Research Institute, Division of Ecosystem Management, Papua, New Guinea

This paper evaluates life cycle CO2 (LCCO2) emissions by comparing a biomass power plant with a coal power plant of the CO2 removal system. For the concrete investigation of the biomass life cycle analysis, (LCA), the reforestation site in Madang Province in Papua New Guinea (PNG) was selected as a model area. Then Eucalyptus deglupta - which is one of the fast-growing trees - was adopted as a biomass material.

First, the characteristics of Eucalyptus deglupta and the feasibility of the sustainable reforestation management in PNG was investigated. It was estimated that LCCO2 emissions in the cultivation process was 21,556 t-CO2/y - provided that the scale of reforestation area was 20,160 ha, the terrain gradient was 5 degrees, and nutrient-losses by soil erosion are also taken into consideration. Second, the Biomass Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle plant was designed. In particular, the performance of the gasifier was calculated using the basic experimental data. In the case of the input of biomass of 35.0 t/h and a moisture content of 20% (wet-base), the net power output was 80 MW and the net system efficiency was 39.8%.

Consequently, it was estimated that the minimum LCCO2 emissions of a biomass power was 45.8 g-CO2/kWh, while that of a coal power with CO2 removal equipment was 50.5 g-CO2/kWh.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 205-216
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Review of Life-Cycle Applications for Environmental Decision Making in the United States

Deborah Elcock
Argonne National Laboratory, Washington, DC

Life-cycle assessment (LCA) is the consideration of a product's inputs, outputs, and impacts over its entire life cycle. Although some LCAs have been conducted with the intent of providing input to environmental policies, few, if any, cases show that LCA was actually used to develop an environmental policy or regulation. This situation can be attributed, at least in part, to the incompatibility between the LCA process and the U.S. environmental regulatory structure. Thus, while LCAs identify resource use and environmental releases to various media throughout a product's or process's life cycle (resource extraction, use, and final disposition), the U.S. environmental regulatory structure has traditionally required the application of specific technologies to limit releases to specific environmental media from specific release points. While many LCAs are conducted with no direct environmental regulatory driver, they are often used for environmental decision making within an organization - frequently in response to broad national or international environmental goals, such as reducing fuel consumption. This paper discusses background information on the U.S. environmental regulatory decision-making process, and reviews several LCA "mini case studies." Each review identifies the purpose of the LCA and examines the link between the LCA and environmental policies or regulations. The discussion for each case identifies whether the LCA was used: 1) to develop an environmental regulation or policy; 2) to respond to an existing environmental regulation or policy; or 3) for purposes not directly related to environmental regulations or policies.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 217-228
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Life-Cycle Analysis of Advanced Power Generation Systems

Victor Gorokhov, Lynn Manfredo, Jay Ratafia-Brown, and Massood Ramezan
Science Applications International Corporation, Pittsburgh, PA
Gary Stiegel
U.S. Department of Energy, National Energy Technology Laboratory, Pittsburgh, PA

Advanced, fossil-fired power generation technologies are under development to satisfy increasingly stringent environmental standards and to improve operating efficiencies. Quantification of the environmental performance advantages of these new technologies is critical to their future acceptance relative to conventional technologies. The objective of this study was to develop and apply a consistent methodology for all phases of fossil energy production, including processing and transportation of all resources and products, as well as the plant construction and demolition. The methodology used in this study has three major elements: 1) system scoping; 2) emissions inventory assessment; and 3) impact assessment. Simulation results from ASPEN computer modeling were used to scope and characterize the basic power plant island and provide a core material and energy balance. An inventory assessment was then conducted by developing a comprehensive inventory model with the LCAdvantageTM computer program. The emissions inventory results were used to conduct the life-cycle impact analysis. This paper describes the analytical methodology and presents the initial results of its application to gasification-based power systems.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 229-240
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Evaluation of Uncertainty in LCA Based on Input-Output Analysis

Yoshikuni Yoshida, Hisashi Ishitani, Ryuji Matsuhashi, Yuki Kudoh, and Hiroyuki Okuma
Department of Geosystem Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Koji Morita and Ami Koike
Nissan Motor Co., Tokyo, Japan
Osamu Kobayashi
The Institute of Applied Energy, Tokyo, Japan
Kanji Yoshioka
Keio University, Tokyo, Japan

This paper quantifies the uncertainty of LCA results by input-output (I-O) analysis, evaluating CO2 emissions intensity and its variance calculated with I-O tables. Then they are applied to the LCA of a typical passenger car and the reliability is verified on the value of life cycle CO2 emissions. The CO2 emissions induced by the production of the passenger car is estimated at 1.3 Mg-C. Coefficients of variation (CV) of emissions associated with the production of the passenger car is estimated at 0.126, although CV of emissions intensity calculated with I-O tables are about 0.8 for the intermediate commodities which are frequently assessed in LCA. The CV of total emissions decreases as the number of components of the passenger car increases. This indicates that although emissions intensity itself given by I-O tables has a large variance, I-O tables are still useful tools for LCA if the number of components of a product is large enough. From the life cycle viewpoint, running stage accounts for about 80 percent of the total emissions when lifetime driving distance is assumed as 100000 km. Hence, the CV of emissions in the manufacturing stage is at an acceptable level compared with the large portion of emissions in the running stage

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 241-256
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Proposed Methodology for Monetizing Adverse Health Effects to Workers Cleaning Up the U.S. Doe Complex

Jay Cornish
MSE Technology Applications, Inc., Butte, MT

For the past 14 years, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has made considerable progress towards the cleanup of contaminated sites throughout the former Nuclear Weapons Complex. To support investment of its technical and monetary remediation resources in a cost-beneficial manner, DOE has funded the development of life cycle cost models. Traditionally, these models allow engineering-based evaluation of site-specific costs associated with using innovative or conventional ("baseline") types of remediation technology(ies). Adverse acute and/or chronic health effects may occur within the worker population using any of these technology alternatives. Such effects have monetary consequences at both the individual and societal levels of concern.

This paper summarizes one approach to integrating worker health costs into engineering-based cost models. Evaluation of likelihood of harm utilizes industrial process hazard assessment and health risk assessment methodologies in a manner commonly applied to uncontrolled hazardous waste sites. The intermediate results include estimated numbers, types, and envisioned long term consequences of the adverse health effects associated with use of the given remedial technology. Cost-of-Illness and Willingness-to-Pay methods are then used to estimate the respective societal and individual costs associated with the identified health effects. Finally, conventional cost-benefit analysis is used to evaluate the potential for health-based "savings" via use of an innovative (vs. baseline) technology for remediation of a particular environmental contamination problem.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 257-266
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Life-Cycle Evaluation of Alternative Configurations for Shipping Low-Level Radioactive Waste to the Nevada Test Site

Philip M. Daling
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA
Bruce M. Biwer
Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL
Peter R. Siebach
Department of Energy Chicago Operations, Argonne, IL
Steven B. Ross
Battelle Albuquerque Office, Albuquerque, NM

The Nevada Test Site (NTS) is a major receiver of U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)-owned low-level radioactive waste (LLW) for disposal. This paper evaluates the life-cycle costs and risks of alternative configurations for transporting LLW generated throughout the DOE complex to the NTS. Currently, much of the LLW being transported to the NTS is done by truck via highway routes which traverse the Hoover Dam and the Las Vegas Valley. This is a concern of the State and local citizen's groups. Since the NTS and some other Department of Energy LLW generator sites are not served with direct rail service, this paper identifies and evaluates intermodal alternatives - both truck and rail components - along with historical truck scenarios to transport LLW from generator sites to NTS. Public and worker life-time risks and costs are estimated. Key observations include:
1. Non-radiological accident risks (i.e., physical injuries) are significantly higher than radiological risks.
2. Radiological risks are small.
3. Routing trucks around the Las Vegas Valley and bypassing the Hoover Dam results in slightly higher radiological and non-radiological risks than using routes through Las Vegas.
4. The life-cycle costs for intermodal alternatives are significantly lower than the all-truck alternatives.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 267-286
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Elevation of the Efficiency of Cyanobacterial Carbon Dioxide Removal by Monoethanolamine Solution

Kazuhisa Ohtaguchi and Anondho Wijanarko
Department of Chemical Engineering, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan

This study represents an effort to elevate the rate of carbon dioxide assimilation of cyanobacteria for CO2 sequestrations. Investigation targets fell into two principal categories: 1) the formulation of a mathematical model for CO2 assimilation kinetics and a search for culture conditions to maximize the CO2 removal rate; and 2) the creation of an alternative that further elevates the CO2 removal rate. These were studied in a culture of unicellular photolithoautotroph Synechococcus leopoliensis at 313 K.

First, a series of experiments with the modified Detmer medium (MDM) and its derivatives were performed to lead a mathematical model for the elucidation of a growth condition that supports a high CO2 fixation rate. Practical improvement of light intercepting efficiency was achieved by adding S. leopoliensis from the stationary phase at concentrations of 0 to 0.952 g/L to MDM solutions that were sparged by 60 mL/L CO2 in air at different flow rates. The gas holdup and transmittance of aerated suspension of S. leopoliensis were then measured. Transmittance during photolithoautotrophic growth of S. leopoliensis was always smaller than expected. Using suitable parameters a model was developed. The kinetics of growth of S. leopoliensis on MDM was studied with a 0.02 m light-path length in the incident photon flux density (PPFD) range of 95.6 to 303 mmol/M2 · s; entering-gas CO2 concentration range of 29 to 110 mL/L; and initial S. leopoliensis concentration range of 9.05 to 816 mg/L. The growth rate of S. leopoliensis at certain levels of cell mass concentration was not unaffected by inoculumn size levels. The light-path length dependency of S. leopoliensis growth was investigated in gas-sparged bioreactors with light-path lengths in the range of 0.02-0.90 m. Growth of S. leopoliensis was found to fail if the light-path length was no less than 0.63 m. S. leopoliensis always stopped photosynthesis before the transmitted PPFD was reduced to zero. Considering this phenomenon, the classic Steele model on growth kinetics was modified for S. leopoliensis and the growth rate was related to the average light-path length. Mathematical models of this work predicted that the light-path length leaves no perceptible influence on attainable level (2.01 g/m2 · h), even though the highest specific growth was achieved at a 0.02 in light-path length.

Subsequently, MDM was replaced by monoethanolamine (MEA) medium containing 1.0 g/L MEA; 0.09 g/L K2HPO4; 0.01 g/L Na2HPO4; and 0.25 g/L MgSO4·7H2O. When a batch culture of S. leopoliensis on MEA medium was continuously aerated by 60 mL/L CO2 under the 190 mol/m2 · s light, S. leopoliensis utilized MEA as a nitrogen source. The measurement of CO2 concentrations at the inlet and outlet of gas stream showed an extremely high activity of the CO2 concentration mechanism of the MEA-adapted S. leopoliensis cells. A maximum CO2 accumulation rate of 0.559 g/L · h was observed that is about 4.4 times that of the run on MDM. The average level of PPFD when S. leopoliensis ceased cell growth reduced considerably.

Cyanobacterial technology where the culture of S. leopoliensis is grown in MEA solution sparged by CO2 in air appears to be suitable for sequestration of CO2.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 287-290
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The Emerging Focus on Life-Cycle Assessment in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Mary Ann Curran
Office of Research & Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Cincinnati, OH

This paper describes the evolution of Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA) in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The paper provides examples of the application of LCA, particularly as related to optimization of various operations.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 291-294
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Design for Recycling®
Design Determines Destiny

Shelley E. Padnos
Louis Padnos Iron & Metal Company, Holland, MI

Design for Recycling® (DFR) is a concept formally introduced by the scrap recycling industry beginning in the mid-1980s. This paper provides an overview of the current recycling activities. It also provides recommendations for improving the recycling of manufactured products.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 295-298
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Web-Based Risk and Hazard Identification and Screening

John L. Steele
Westinghouse Savannah River Company, Aiken, SC
Evaristo J. Bonano
Beta Corporation International, Albuquerque, NM

Many organizations have instituted safe work practices commonly referred to as "Integrated Safety Management." Although all U.S. Department of Energy facilities have implemented an Integrated Safety Management System, different facilities have taken various approaches to the implementation of the system. This paper describes the application of a software to achieve the desired goal.

Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 299-300
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Issues in Scrap Tire Management

John R. Serumgard
Scrap Tire Management Council, Rubber Manufacturers Association, Washington, DC

Discarded tires are being used to prepare materials for construction, other applications, and as a fuel in energy production facilities.