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This is a joint report between three national labs, ORNL, INL, and ANL, that describes outcomes from a workshop. The Bioenergy Solutions to Gulf Hypoxia Workshop gathered stakeholders from industry, academia, national laboratories, and U.S. federal agencies to discuss how biomass feedstocks could help decrease nutrient loadings to the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf), a root cause of the large hypoxic zone that forms each summer.

Author:
Henriette Jager , Christina Negri , Leslie Ovard , Shyam Nair
Funded from the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Bioenergy Technologies Office.

With the goal of understanding environmental effects of a growing bioeconomy, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), national laboratories, and U.S. Forest Service research laboratories, together with academic and industry collaborators, undertook a study to estimate environmental effects of potential biomass production scenarios in the United States, with an emphasis on agricultural and forest biomass. Potential effects investigated include changes in soil organic carbon (SOC), greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, water quality and quantity, air emissions, and biodiversity.

Author:
R. A. Efroymson , M. H. Langholtz , E. Johnson , B. J. Stokes
Funded from the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Bioenergy Technologies Office.

One approach to assessing progress towards sustainability makes use of multiple indicators spanning the
environmental, social, and economic dimensions of the system being studied. Diverse indicators have different
units of measurement, and normalization is the procedure employed to transform differing indicator
measures onto similar scales or to unit-free measures. Given the inherent complexity entailed in interpreting
information related to multiple indicators, normalization and aggregation of sustainability indicators

Author:
N.L. Pollesch , V.H. Dale
Funded from the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Bioenergy Technologies Office.

The Federal Activities Report on the Bioeconomy has been prepared to emphasize the significant potential for an even stronger U.S. bioeconomy through the production and use of biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower. Bioeconomy activities have already touched on the interests of many federal agencies and offices. This report is intended to educate the public on the wide-ranging, federally funded activities that are helping to bolster the bioeconomy.

Author:
The Biomass Research and Development (R&D) Board
Funded from the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Bioenergy Technologies Office.

Water sustainability is an integral part of the environmental sustainability. Water use, water quality, and the demand on water resource for bioenergy production can have potential impacts to food, feed, and fiber production and to our social well-being. With the support from United State Department of Energy, Argonne National Laboratory is developing a life cycle water use assessment tool for biofuels production at the national scale with multiple spatial resolutions.

Author:
May Wu

A Workshop for Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and their collaborators was held on September 10-11, 2009 at ORNL. The informal workshop focused on “Sustainability of Bioenergy Systems: Cradle to Grave.” The topics covered included sustainability issues associated with feedstock production and transport, production of biofuels and by-products, and delivery and consumption by the end users.

Author:
Vriginia Dale

This model was developed at Idaho National Laboratory and focuses on crop production. This model is an agricultural cultivation and production model, but can be used to estimate biomass crop yields.

Author:
Hoskinson, R.L.

The Census of Agriculture, taken every five years, is a complete count of U.S. farms and ranches and the people who operate them. The Census looks at land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income and expenditures. For America’s farmers and ranchers, the Census of Agriculture is their voice, their future and their responsibility.

Funded from the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Bioenergy Technologies Office.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) 2001 National Land Cover Database (NLCD) was compared to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) 2002 Census of Agriculture. Wecompared areal estimates for cropland at the state and county level for 14 States in the Upper Midwest region of the United States. Absolute differences between the NLCD and Census cropland areal estimates at the state level ranged from 1.3% (Minnesota) to 37.0% (Wisconsin). The majority of counties (74.5%) had differences of less than 100 km2. 7.2% of the counties had differences of more than 200 km2.

Author:
Maxwell, S.K.

Ground-based data on crop production in the USA is provided through surveys conducted by the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) and the Census of Agriculture (AgCensus). Statistics from these surveys are widely used in economic analyses, policy design, and for other purposes. However, missing data in the surveys presents limitations for research that requires comprehensive data for spatial analyses.We created comprehensive county-level databases for nine major crops of the USA for a 16-yr period, by filling the gaps in existing data reported by NASS and AgCensus.

Author:
Erandathie ,Lokupitiya