Water requirements throughout the electricity generation life cycle have important implications for the electricity sector. Thermoelectric power plant operations are estimated as responsible for around 36%  to 41%  of total freshwater withdrawals in the United States and 3% of total freshwater consumption [1,3]. However, the life cycle of electricity generation consists of many stages besides power plant operation, including component manufacturing, fuel acquisition, processing, and transport, and power plant decommissioning. The water requirements associated with choices along this life cycle, such as the selection of fuel type or cooling technology, are not well understood.
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Life Cycle Water Use for Electricity Generation: Implications of the Distribution of Collected Estimates
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Meldrum, JR, Macknick, JE, Heath, GA, & Nettles-Anderson, SL. "Life Cycle Water Use for Electricity Generation: Implications of the Distribution of Collected Estimates." Proceedings of the ASME 2013 Power Conference. Volume 2: Reliability, Availability and Maintainability (RAM); Plant Systems, Structures, Components and Materials Issues; Simple and Combined Cycles; Advanced Energy Systems and Renewables (Wind, Solar and Geothermal); Energy Water Nexus; Thermal Hydraulics and CFD; Nuclear Plant Design, Licensing and Construction; Performance Testing and Performance Test Codes. Boston, Massachusetts, USA. July 29–August 1, 2013. V002T10A005. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/POWER2013-98229
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