UBC Undergraduate Research

An introduction into induction and natural gas stoves : a triple bottom line analysis for the new Student Union Building Ho, Jordan; Moorhouse, Colin; Zhao, David


This report compares the attributes of induction and natural gas stoves and provides a recommendation as to which is more suitable for use in the new Student Union Building through a triple-bottom line analysis. The triple-bottom line looks at the economical, environmental, and societal impacts of these stoves. The comparisons of the two types of stoves are to be conducted based on their technological attributes for the environmental and societal impacts, while individual models from different manufacturers are compared to look at their economical impacts. The report uses peer-reviewed papers that were written by experts to provide information on the two types of stoves. Most were published in science and academic journals. The information that is presented assumes that the data from the test stoves are representative of the stoves that can be purchased for the new SUB. It is also assumed that the indicated usage and lifespan of the stoves will be similar to the stoves that will be used in the catering kitchen. The research that is presented in this report shows that the average capital costs for induction stoves are much greater than natural gas stoves, but the variable costs for the energy are much less for induction stoves. However, the unique pricing for resources for the new SUB alters the costs of the different types of stoves. Since natural gas stoves involve combustion, emissions are present while induction stoves do not produce any. Natural gas stoves are approximately 40% energy efficient because of the significant amount of heat loss to the surroundings. Conversely, induction stoves are highly energy efficient with an efficiency of approximately 90% because heat generation takes place in the pot itself. Natural gas stoves also present a higher risk for burns from the flame as well as possible health issues due to the inhalation of the by-products of combustion. Induction stoves also provide a cooler working environment. Cleaning induction stoves is much easier because the surface is not heated and generally flat as opposed to natural gas stoves, which have burners that make it more difficult. From analysing the economical, environmental, and social impacts of the triple-bottom line, it is recommended that the new SUB use induction stoves in the catering kitchen. The induction stoves offer safer working conditions and greater energy efficiency than natural gas. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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