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LAYERS: a decision-support tool to illustrate and assess the supply and value chain for the energy transition

Heidrich, O. ORCID:, Ford, A. C. ORCID:, Dawson, R. J. ORCID:, Manning, D. A. C. ORCID:, Mohareb, E. ORCID:, Raugei, M. ORCID:, Baars, J. and Rajaeifar, M. A. (2022) LAYERS: a decision-support tool to illustrate and assess the supply and value chain for the energy transition. Sustainability, 14 (12). 7120. ISSN 2071-1050

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To link to this item DOI: 10.3390/su14127120


Climate change mitigation strategies are developed at international, national, and local authority levels. Technological solutions such as renewable energies (RE) and electric vehicles (EV) have geographically widespread knock-on effects on raw materials. In this paper, a decision-support and data-visualization tool named “LAYERS” is presented, which applies a material flow analysis to illustrate the complex connections along supply chains for carbon technologies. A case study focuses on cobalt for lithium-ion batteries (LIB) required for EVs. It relates real business data from mining and manufacturing to actual EV registrations in the UK to visualize the intended and unintended consequences of the demand for cobalt. LAYERS integrates a geographic information systems (GIS) architecture, database scheme, and whole series of stored procedures and functions. By means of a 3D visualization based on GIS, LAYERS conveys a clear understanding of the location of raw materials (from reserves, to mining, refining, manufacturing, and use) across the globe. This highlights to decision makers the often hidden but far-reaching geo-political implications of the growing demands for a range of raw materials that are needed to meet long-term carbon-reduction targets.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of the Built Environment > Construction Management and Engineering
Science > School of the Built Environment > Energy and Environmental Engineering group
ID Code:105719


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