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Sustainability 2011, 3(10), 1888-1907; doi:10.3390/su3101888

Order from Chaos: A Preliminary Protocol for Determining the EROI of Fuels

1,* , 2
1 Department of Geography and the Institute for the Study of the Environment, Sustainability, and Energy, Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, IL 60115, USA 2 Department of Environmental and Forest Biology and the Program in Environmental Science, College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY 13210, USA 3 Global Climate and Energy Project (GCEP), Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA 94305, USA 4 Geography and Environment, Boston University, Boston MA 02215, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 July 2011 / Revised: 1 August 2011 / Accepted: 5 August 2011 / Published: 17 October 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Studies in EROI (Energy Return on Investment))
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The main objective of this manuscript is to provide a formal methodology, structure, and nomenclature for EROI analysis that is both consistent, so that all EROI numbers across various processes can be compared, and also flexible, so that changes or additions to the universal formula can focus analyses on specific areas of concern. To accomplish this objective we address four areas that are of particular interest within EROI analysis: (1) boundaries of the system under analysis, (2) energy quality corrections, (3) energy-economic conversions, and (4) alternative EROI statistics. Lastly, we present step-by-step instructions outlining how to perform an EROI analysis.
Keywords: energy; EROI; protocol; boundaries; energy quality; economics energy; EROI; protocol; boundaries; energy quality; economics
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Murphy, D.J.; Hall, C.A.; Dale, M.; Cleveland, C. Order from Chaos: A Preliminary Protocol for Determining the EROI of Fuels. Sustainability 2011, 3, 1888-1907.

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