Life Cycle Analysis Data and Results for Geothermal and Other Electricity Generation Technologies


Life cycle analysis (LCA) is an environmental assessment method that quantifies the environmental performance of a product system over its entire lifetime, from cradle to grave. Based on a set of relevant metrics, the method is aptly suited for comparing the environmental performance of competing products systems. This file contains LCA data and results for electric power production including geothermal power. The LCA for electric power has been broken down into two life cycle stages, namely plant and fuel cycles.

Relevant metrics include the energy ratio and greenhouse gas (GHG) ratios, where the former is the ratio of system input energy to total lifetime electrical energy out and the latter is the ratio of the sum of all incurred greenhouse gases (in CO2 equivalents) divided by the same energy output.

Specific information included herein are material to power (MPR) ratios for a range of power technologies for conventional thermoelectric, renewables (including three geothermal power technologies), and coproduced natural gas/geothermal power. For the geothermal power scenarios, the MPRs include the casing, cement, diesel, and water requirements for drilling wells and topside piping.

Also included herein are energy and GHG ratios for plant and fuel cycle stages for the range of considered electricity generating technologies.

Some of this information are MPR data extracted directly from the literature or from models (eg. ICARUS - a subset of ASPEN models) and others (energy and GHG ratios) are results calculated using GREET models and MPR data. MPR data for wells included herein were based on the Argonne well materials model and GETEM well count results.

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DOE Project Number: ANL FY13 AOP 1
DOE Project Lead: Arlene Anderson
DOI: 10.15121/1148839
Last Updated: over a year ago
Data from June, 2013
Submitted Jun 13, 2013


Argonne National Laboratory



Publicly accessible License 


John Sullivan
Argonne National Laboratory


geothermal, life cycle analysis, energy ratios, material requirements, greenhouse gas emissions, electricity generating technologies, Plant materials, greenhouse gas emission, coproduced, MPR, ratio, GHG, life cycle, analysis, LCA, environmental, assessment


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