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Economic assessment of externalities of biomass for energy

R.M. Sáez Angulo, P. Linares, J. Fernández González

This paper compares the externalities of two different fuel cycles, biomass and imported coal for electricity production. Biomass comes from Cynara cardunculus, grown on set-aside lands. Both private costs and external costs have been calculated. External costs have been assessed with the ExternE methodology. Health effects, environmental effects, and socioeconomic impacts such as tax revenues or employment have been considered. In the end, it seems that, although private generation costs for biomass are much larger, the incorporation of externalities into the total costs makes it competitive with imported coal, mainly due to the erosion control of energy crops.

Keywords: Externalities, biomass, coal, electricity.

European Conference on Environmental Impact of Biomass for Energy. Noordwijkerhout, The Netherlands. 4-5 November 1996

Published: November 1996.

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