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The evaluation of environmental effects and risks of renewable energy production and use (UUSRISKI)

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Basic project information

Project description

Potential environmental damages and risks of renewable energy production and use can be avoided, when they are identified as early as possible. Thereby energy policy as well as other natural and environmental objectives can be reconciled. The National Renewable Energy Action Plan sets out that Finland has to increase its share of renewable energy from 28 per cent to 38 per cent of final energy consumption by 2020. The aim of the project is to support the sustainable implementation of the national renewable energy action plan.

In this project, environmental impacts and the potential risks of renewable energy production and use are assessed by bringing together relevant research data. Forest wood chips, wind power, biofuels for transport, hydropower, bio-gas, arable land, pellets, heat pumps, recycled fuels and solar thermal and electric systems are included in the study.

Environmental impacts including climate change, acidification, eutrophication, water consumption, biodiversity, land use, formation of particulate matter, non-renewable resource use and ozone depletion are assessed throughout the life cycles of the energy sources. Other effects that are explored include noise, odor, landscape damage, aesthetic damage, health impacts, and impacts to the recreational use. Renewable energy will be compared to non-renewable energy, which allows comparison of potential disadvantages of the use of renewable and non-renewable energy. The aim is also to set out proposals for action to reduce environmental impact and risks, and to identificate research and monitoring needs.

More information: 

Professor Pekka Leskinen, Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, forename.surname@ymparisto.fi

Published 2013-04-24 at 10:16, updated 2013-04-24 at 10:16