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Special Issue "Environmental Life Cycle Assessment of Electric Vehicles"

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "A6: Electric Vehicles".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 December 2022 | Viewed by 7718

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Dorota Burchart
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Silesian University of Technology, Faculty of Transport and Aviation Engineering, Department of Road Transport, Katowice, Poland
Interests: electric vehicles; life cycle assessment; electromobility; alternative fuels
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, greetings from the Special Issue Editors.

The Guest Editor is inviting submissions for a Special Issue of Energies on "Environmental Life Cycle Assessment of Electric Vehicles". Electric vehicles (EVs) are the future of transport in many countries, and offer significant potential for reducing air pollution. Assuming a life cycle approach of electric vehicles means to consider the analysis from cradle to grave, with a special focus on the production of the electricity required to charge EV batteries. Within the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), many impact categories can be evaluated, including the carbon footprint, water footprint, cumulative energy demand, human health, acidification, eutrophication, human toxicity,and particulate matter formation. A comparative life cycle analysis of EVs and alternative fuels like compressed natural gas (CNG), liquefied natural gas (LNG), hydrogen, etc., enables comprehensive environmental assessment of each fuel, taking into account each stage of the vehicle's life cycle. Research in the environmental assessment of electric vehicles requires several sciences, and we therefore welcome contributions from many different disciplines, especially environmental engineering, energy, and transport. This Special Issue presents a collection of original research and reviews focused on the environmantal analysis of electric vehicles and the development of sustainable transport.

Topics of interest for publication include but are not limited to the following:

  • The environmental assessment of electric vehicles with life cycle approach;
  • The carbon footprint and water footprint of electric vehicles;
  • The life cycle assessment of electric vehicle batteries;
  • The LCA of smart grids for electric vehicles;
  • A comparative analysis of alternative fuels in vehicles;
  • Circular economy perspectives in electric vehicles.

Prof. Dr. Dorota Burchart
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Electric vehicles (EVs)
  • Life cycle assessment (LCA)
  • Carbon footprint and water footprint
  • Circular economy perspectives
  • Electric vehicle batteries
  • Smart grids
  • Alternative fuels in vehicles.

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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Article
Refining Estimates of Fuel-Cycle Greenhouse-Gas Emission Reductions Associated with California’s Clean Vehicle Rebate Project with Program Data and Other Case-Specific Inputs
Energies 2021, 14(15), 4640; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14154640 - 30 Jul 2021
Viewed by 940
Abstract
This work refines and updates estimates of the fuel-cycle greenhouse-gas (GHG) emission impacts of electric vehicles (EVs) rebated in California. Emissions are estimated using disaggregated data from the start of the rebate program through August 2018 (N = 269,902 participants) and factors that [...] Read more.
This work refines and updates estimates of the fuel-cycle greenhouse-gas (GHG) emission impacts of electric vehicles (EVs) rebated in California. Emissions are estimated using disaggregated data from the start of the rebate program through August 2018 (N = 269,902 participants) and factors that characterize fuel use and fuel life-cycle carbon intensity. GHG reductions are calculated for the first year of vehicle operation and subsequently scaled to reflect various operational timeframes. GHG reduction estimates over the first year of vehicle ownership total approximately 855 thousand metric tons of CO2-equivalent emissions, or 3.2 tons per vehicle. For nonfleet individuals, 54% of reductions are associated with “Rebate-Essential” participants who were most highly influenced by the rebate to purchase/lease. Comparing the estimated warranty-life benefit of 7.9 million tons of GHG reductions to USD 603 million in corresponding rebates results in USD 76 of state incentives per metric ton reduced over the first 100,000/150,000 miles of rebated vehicle use. Uncertainty in estimates presents opportunities for further refinement using additional participant-specific, time-variant, or otherwise detailed inputs. Nevertheless, the contributions of this work increased average first-year GHG reductions per vehicle by 35–45% compared to previous work, demonstrating that use of program-derived data can enhance the understanding of EV impacts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Life Cycle Assessment of Electric Vehicles)
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Article
Prospective Environmental Impacts of Passenger Cars under Different Energy and Steel Production Scenarios
Energies 2020, 13(23), 6236; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13236236 - 26 Nov 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1278
Abstract
The potential environmental impacts of producing and using future electric vehicles (EVs) are important given their expected role in mitigating global climate change and local air pollutants. Recently, studies have begun assessing the effect of potential future changes in EVs supply chains on [...] Read more.
The potential environmental impacts of producing and using future electric vehicles (EVs) are important given their expected role in mitigating global climate change and local air pollutants. Recently, studies have begun assessing the effect of potential future changes in EVs supply chains on overall environmental performance. This study contributes by integrating expected changes in future energy, iron, and steel production in the life cycle assessment (LCA) of EVs. In this light, the study examines the impacts of changes in these parameters on producing and charging future EVs. Future battery electric vehicles (BEV) could have a 36–53% lower global warming potential (GWP) compared to current BEV. The change in source of electricity generation accounts for 89% of GWP reductions over the BEV’s life cycle. Thus, it presents the highest GWP reduction potential of 35–48%. The use of hydrogen for direct reduction of iron in steelmaking (HDR-I) is expected to reduce vehicle production GWP by 17% compared to current technology. By accounting for 9% of the life cycle GWP reductions, HDR-I has the second-highest reduction potential (1.3–4.8%). The results also show that the potential for energy efficiency improvement measures for GWP reduction in vehicle and battery manufacture would be more beneficial when applied now than in the distant future (2050), when the CO2 intensity of the EU electricity is expected to be lower. Interestingly, under the same conditions, the high share of renewable energy in vehicle supply chains contributed to a decrease in all air pollution-related impact categories, but an increase in toxicity-related categories, as well as land use and water consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Life Cycle Assessment of Electric Vehicles)
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Review

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Review
Environmental Life Cycle Impacts of Automotive Batteries Based on a Literature Review
Energies 2020, 13(23), 6345; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13236345 - 01 Dec 2020
Cited by 23 | Viewed by 4814
Abstract
We compiled 50 publications from the years 2005–2020 about life cycle assessment (LCA) of Li-ion batteries to assess the environmental effects of production, use, and end of life for application in electric vehicles. Investigated LCAs showed for the production of a battery pack [...] Read more.
We compiled 50 publications from the years 2005–2020 about life cycle assessment (LCA) of Li-ion batteries to assess the environmental effects of production, use, and end of life for application in electric vehicles. Investigated LCAs showed for the production of a battery pack per kWh battery capacity a median of 280 kWh/kWh_bc (25%-quantile–75%-quantile: 200–500 kWh/kWh_bc) for the primary energy consumption and a median of 120 kg CO2-eq/kWh_bc (25%-quantile–75%-quantile: 70–175 kg CO2-eq/kWh_bc) for greenhouse gas emissions. We expect results for current batteries to be in the lower range. Over the lifetime of an electric vehicle, these emissions relate to 20 g CO2-eq/km (25%-quantile–75%-quantile: 10–50 g CO2-eq/km). Considering recycling processes, greenhouse gas savings outweigh the negative environmental impacts of recycling and can reduce the life cycle greenhouse gas emissions by a median value of 20 kg CO2-eq/kWh_bc (25%-quantile–75%-quantile: 5–29 kg CO2-eq/kWh_bc). Overall, many LCA results overestimated the environmental impact of cell manufacturing, due to the assessments of relatively small or underutilized production facilities. Material emissions, like from mining and especially processing from metals and the cathode paste, could have been underestimated, due to process-based assumptions and non-regionalized primary data. Second-life applications were often not considered. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Life Cycle Assessment of Electric Vehicles)
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