Economic analysis and environmental impact of energy usage in microbusinesses in UK and Kurdistan, Iraq

Azabany, Azad (2014) Economic analysis and environmental impact of energy usage in microbusinesses in UK and Kurdistan, Iraq. Doctoral thesis, University of Central Lancashire.

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Over reliance on fossil fuels, rising global population, industrialization, demands for a higher standard of living and transportation have caused alarming damage to the environment. If current trend continues then catastrophic damage to the earth and its environment may not be reversible. There is an urgent need to reduce the use of fossils fuels and substituting it with renewable energy sources such as wind, tidal and hydroelectric.
Solar source seems to be the most promising due to its environmental friendly nature, portability and reliability. This source was examined in terms of microbusinesses such as SMEs including hair dressing salon, education centre, fried chicken outlet and printing shop. Small businesses account for a large proportion of the economy. The analysis developed could be applied to small business to show their contribution to the carbon footprint and how this could be reduced using solar energy. The proportions of their current electricity usage that could be substituted with solar cells were calculated. Combined these have a significant impact. These businesses were considered for UK and Iraq with the former being more amenable to solar energy implementation.
Analysis of the four SMEs showed that the most energy intensive business was fried chicken take away using a large amount of electricity and the least energy intensive business was the education centre. In the latter in UK 57% of the electricity usage could be replaced by solar energy compared to Kurdistan, which generated a surplus energy that could be fed into the national grid. The gents groom hairdressing and blue apple businesses gave intermediate figures. Parallel conclusions were drawn regarding CO2 emissions released into the atmosphere with education centre being the most environmentally friendly and the fried chicken the least.
In addition, a larger public space, an international airport data was analysed and the value of solar replacement demonstrated. The methodology and data analysis approach used may be implemented for other business units and larger public spaces such as hospitals, shopping complexes and football stadiums.

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