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Energies 2019, 12(5), 949; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12050949

Analyzing National and Local Pathways to Carbon-Neutrality from Technology, Emissions, and Resilience Perspectives—Case of Finland

Aalto University, School of Science, New Energy Technologies Group, P.O. Box 15100, FI-00076 Aalto, Espoo, Finland
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Received: 30 January 2019 / Revised: 28 February 2019 / Accepted: 6 March 2019 / Published: 12 March 2019
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Abstract

The Paris Climate Accord calls for urgent CO2 reductions. Here we investigate low and zero carbon pathways based on clean electricity and sector coupling. Effects from different spatialities are considered through city and national cases (Helsinki and Finland). The methodology employs techno-economic energy system optimization, including resilience aspects. In the Finnish case, wind, nuclear, and biomass coupled to power-to-heat and other flexibility measures could provide a cost-effective carbon-neutral pathway (annual costs −18%), but nuclear and wind are, to some extent, exclusionary. A (near) carbon-neutral energy system seems possible even without nuclear (−94% CO2). Zero-carbon energy production benefits from a stronger link to the broader electricity market albeit flexibility measures. On the city level, wind would not easily replace local combined heat and power (CHP), but may increase electricity export. In the Helsinki case, a business-as-usual approach could halve emissions and annual costs, while in a comprehensive zero-emission approach, the operating costs (OPEX) could decrease by 87%. Generally, electrification of heat production could be effective to reduce CO2. Low or zero carbon solutions have a positive impact on resilience, but in the heating sector this is more problematic, e.g., power outage and adequacy of supply during peak demand will require more attention when planning future carbon-free energy systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: renewable energy; wind power; photovoltaics; sector coupling; urban energy; energy system modelling; carbon neutrality renewable energy; wind power; photovoltaics; sector coupling; urban energy; energy system modelling; carbon neutrality
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Pilpola, S.; Arabzadeh, V.; Mikkola, J.; Lund, P.D. Analyzing National and Local Pathways to Carbon-Neutrality from Technology, Emissions, and Resilience Perspectives—Case of Finland. Energies 2019, 12, 949.

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