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WIREs Energy Environ.
Impact Factor: 3.803

Infrastructure‐scale sustainable energy planning in the cityscape: Transforming urban energy metabolism in East Asia

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Abstract Transformation of the urban energy metabolism is possible when sustainable energy is positioned as an infrastructure‐scale tool. A review of urban energy planning research is complemented by an examination of assessment methods in use to gauge the feasibility of planning sustainable energy as a new infrastructure to power cities. A case study analysis of the city of Daejeon is offered to operationalize this planning strategy. In particular, the integrated application of the “savings city” and “solar city” concepts where, respectively, citywide deployment of energy efficiency and rooftop photovoltaic energy systems is envisioned at a large‐scale, is explored for Daejeon through the innovative use of geospatial assessment methods and a visualization tool that can guide urban policy. This assessment and its visualization illustrates not only grid energy use divisions throughout the city but also reveals possible energy planning trajectories in pursuit of positioning sustainable energy as urban infrastructure. The assessment finds that cities like Daejeon could fulfill over half of their electricity service needs through in‐city deployment of sustainable energy at the infrastructure‐scale. Cities that embark on this “sustainable city” trajectory essentially reform the lived experience of “the city” and reshape the city‐energy relationship. This article is categorized under: Energy Efficiency > Systems and Infrastructure Energy Policy and Planning > Systems and Infrastructure Energy and Urban Design > Systems and Infrastructure
Spatial annual electricity consumption in Daejeon after application of citywide energy efficiency intervention (left) and separation of city into three consumption classes (right). Classification of annual electricity consumption separates the city into three groups on the right: Low‐consumption (<50 GWh/year), medium consumption (50–125 GWh/year) and high consumption (>125 GWh/year)
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Spatial annual electricity consumption in Daejeon as estimated from regression analysis (left) and separation of city into three consumption classes (right). Classification of annual electricity consumption separates the city into three groups on the right: Low‐consumption (<50 GWh/year), medium consumption (50–125 GWh/year) and high consumption (>125 GWh/year)
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Centralized energy infrastructure overview of Korea, emphasizing the connection between large energy infrastructure and dense urban areas. Large‐scale energy infrastructure, in the form of thermal power and nuclear facilities in excess of 500 MW, are connected to dense urban areas (in red) through a network of transmission linesSource: Population data from National Geographic Information Institute (NGII) National Atlas (2017), power plant data from Electric Power Statistics Information System (EPSIS) (2020) and geocoded using Google Geocoding API, and transmission line data from OpenStreetMap (OSM, 2020) and OpenInfraMap (OIM, 2020)
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Annual electricity services share covered through the combined use of end‐use efficiency and on‐site rooftop solar generation (left) and separated of city into three levels of coverage (right). Classification of electricity services covered into three groups on the right: >60, >70, and >80% coverage of annual electricity services
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Spatial annual electricity consumption in Daejeon after application of citywide energy efficiency and citywide rooftop solar deployment (left) and separation of city into three consumption classes (right). Classification of annual electricity consumption separates the city into four groups on the right: Net‐plus communities (<0 GWh/year, in blue), low‐consumption (0–50 GWh/year), medium consumption (50–125 GWh/year) and high consumption (>125 GWh/year)
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Energy and Urban Design > Systems and Infrastructure
Energy Policy and Planning > Systems and Infrastructure
Energy Efficiency > Systems and Infrastructure

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