Influence of energy mix on the life cycle of an eco-neighborhood, a case study of 150 countries

Modeste Kameni Nematchoua, Somayeh Asadi, Sigrid Reiter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


In recent years, the destruction of the ecosystem, due to the strong emission of greenhouse gas into the atmosphere by humans has led to significant damage to wildlife, human health, and flora. This has significantly changed the human life cycle. Nowadays, the environmental damage costs are applied for the countries strongly impacting pollutant emission. To this end, developing countries receive annual compensation from the countries considered to be the most polluting. So far, decision-makers seem to be unaware that, at the scale of an eco-neighborhood, some emerging countries produce also a significant amount of CO2. The main purpose of this research is to quantify and to compare the effect of the energy mix of 150 countries on three environmental impacts generated by an eco-neighborhood: greenhouse effect, energy demand, and biodiversity damage. To perform this comparison, the same neighborhood design is applied to 150 countries, but four parameters are adapted to each country: energy mix, local climate, building materials, and occupants’ mobility. In addition, this research evaluates the induced environmental costs of the neighborhood over a life cycle of 100 years and examines the impact of mobility and photovoltaic panel on these environmental costs. The different environmental impacts were evaluated by the Pleiades ACV simulation software under four phases (construction, use, renovation, and demolition), before being translated into environmental costs. Among the four local parameters (energy mix, local materials, climate, and transport), the energy mix has the most significant effect on the three studied environmental impacts. The results show that the countries having a higher concentration of renewable energy sources produce lower CO2 than others. Domestic and material wastes are also one of the main sources of greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity damage in a sustainable neighborhood. The biodiversity damage is high in Sub-Sahara Africa, and MiddleEast, but low in the USA, Brazil, European Union, Russia, and Australia. The implementation of photovoltaic panels in a sustainable neighborhood mitigates, on average, 15.9% of carbon dioxide emissions and 21.2% of primary energy demand; but, unfortunately, this solution increases up to 25.0% the biodiversity damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-97
Number of pages17
JournalRenewable Energy
StatePublished - Dec 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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