Together with solar, wind, and hydro renewable energy sources (RES), biomass constitutes an integral part of the high-renewables electricity systems. Considerable feedstocks for electricity generation are process-based residues. Ukraine is the world leader in sunflower seed production, therefore, husk (a by-product of oil production) is a promising biofuel for combustion- based power plants. The plants consume primarily electricity and fossil fuels (natural gas or fuel oil) for steam production. Their usage affects the edible oil production cost and impacts on climate change. The above facts force us to look for alternatives. By-product (husk) utilization can reduce exhaustible energy consumption (fossil fuels and grid electricity) and mitigate climate change. The aim of the study is to make an energy and ecological assessment of biomass energy supply systems. Specifically, the electricity and heat consumption of Ukrainian sunflower oil mills is investigated. Different options of cogeneration systems are analyzed. The preferable mode of combustion-based husk combined heat and power plants is to meet their own heat demand and to sell surplus electricity. Relative gross income and carbon dioxide emission reductions are calculated. Our results show that husk utilization can meet electricity and heat requirements of edible plants. The surplus electricity may be sold to the grid. Husk combined heat and power plants may result in reduction of carbon dioxide by 200–300% and an increase of total income by 24.7–65.7% (compared to conventional energy supply systems).
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