Submitted by: Eesti Energia AS
Implemented country: Estonia
Title: Life Cycle Assessment of Oil Shale Electricity
About 93% of Estonian electricity is generated from oil shale, whereas its environmental impact was not properly characterized. With regard to the EU Greenbook, which requires that “consumers must have easy access to understandable, relevant, credible information either through labeling on the product or from another readily accessible source”, the company completed its “Life Cycle Assessment of Oil Shale Electricity” (LCA), which was made available to the public on a website. LCA is an internationally recognized environmental methodology. Part of the project was to compare oil shale energy with other fossil energies – assessment of the Finnish electricity from coal (coal mined in Poland). A manual on how to apply LCA databases was prepared for Estonian companies and a full-scale model LCA of an energy intensive sample product to demonstrate the usefulness of that method was conducted (painted spruce shiplap weatherboard with a roughly sawed surface, 18 x 121 mm). Further LCA-based analyses on the environmental impact of the different energy production scenarios in Estonia have been conducted as a basis for companies who want to invest in that sector. All results can be accessed at: www.energia.ee/OSELCA/eng/index.php.