Environmental aspects of intermittent Renewable Energy Sources

Surendraprabu Rangaraju, Maarten Messagie, Joeri Van Mierlo, Javier Vicente Sanfelix Forner

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report


In order to increase the percentage of renewable energy in the production of electricity, the shares of wind and photovoltaic (PV) energy need to be increased. In fact, Wind and PV electricity production does not follow the demand side of the electricity market, as it is highly influenced by the prevailing wind speed and the sun light. An electricity system with high penetration levels of wind and PV energy will need a flexible producer to balance the differences between demand and production side. Flexible producing plants like gas turbines and turbo jets may create additional environmental stress. This study assesses the environmental consequence of using more intermittent energy for the production of electricity, taking flexible production units into account. This research gives a better quantitative insight on the effects of, intermittent nature of wind and PV plants, on environmental performance of the whole system. In addition, this research attempts to identify the environmental stress for future scenarios in which there may be more wind and PV integrated into the system.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherElectrabel GDF SUEZ
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2013


  • Wind energy
  • Intermittent energy
  • Life cycle assessment
  • environmental impact


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