Assessing the prospect of deploying green methanol vehicles in China from energy, environmental and economic perspectives
Li, C and Jia, T and Wang, H and Wang, X and Negnevitsky, M and Hu, Y and Zhao, G and Wang, L, Assessing the prospect of deploying green methanol vehicles in China from energy, environmental and economic perspectives, Energy, 263, (Part E) Article 125967. ISSN 0360-5442 (2023) [Refereed Article]
Since the early 2010s, China has been accelerating methanol vehicle development to secure energy supply and reduce environmental pollution. Although completed pilot projects have demonstrated the economic and technological maturity of methanol vehicles, their overall emissions are still high, as methanol is predominantly produced from coal in China. To combat this, two green methanol routes (CO2-to-methanol and biomass-to-methanol) have been proposed as vehicle fuels. Before further deployment, comprehensively comparing green methanol vehicles with other vehicles is crucial; therefore, based on life-cycle assessments and cost analyses, this study compared green methanol vehicles with coal-to-methanol, conventional gasoline, and electric vehicles considering energy-focused, environmental, and economic perspectives. Combined with these results, we developed a comprehensive evaluation model to prioritize green methanol vehicles among the different vehicles in China. The evaluation results show that biomethanol vehicle ranks first; the potential of CO2-to-methanol vehicle is limited because of its high fuel cost and high energy consumption: 2.6 and 13.9 times of biomethanol, respectively. Based on the designed scenarios, the government should develop a dynamic policy scheme consisting of scaling up the deployment of biomethanol vehicles according to local conditions and developing CO2-to-methanol vehicles if fuel technology advances considerably after carbon neutrality.
CO2-To-methanol, biomethanol, coal-to-methanol, methanol vehicles, life cycle assessment