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n the past decades, the production of biomass for energy in agriculture and forestry has increased in many parts of the world. For years to come, further increase in land use for bioenergy will be needed to meet the renewable energy ambitions of many countries, and to reduce fossil fuel use and associated GHG emissions. As many industrialized countries have a limited biomass production potential compared to their prospective demand, it is expected that substantial international bioenergy trade will develop in the coming decades where regions such as Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa will produce feedstocks for both domestic consumption and for export. Increasing the production and energetic use of biomass has many direct and indirect effects, including land-use related GHG emissions, impacts on biodiversity, and other environmental and social effects. However, while much of the recent years’ debate has concerned negative effects, it is important to note that bioenergy expansion can also lead to positive environmental and socio-economic outcomes.

This workshop aimed to bring together current state-of-the-art research concerned with assessing land use effects of bioenergy, mitigating negative impacts, and promoting beneficial outcomes.

Publication Year
Email
neil.bird@joanneum.at
Contact Person
David Neil Bird
Contact Organization
IEA Bioenergy Task 38
Bioenergy Category

ABSTRACT: A growing number of countries are implementing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions trading schemes. As these schemes impose a cost for GHG emissions they should increase the competitiveness of low carbon fuels. Bioenergy from biomass is regarded as carbon neutral in most of the schemes, therefore incurring no emission costs. Emissions trading schemes may therefore encourage increased use of biomass for energy, and under certain conditions may also incentivize the construction of new bioenergy plants. This paper first identifies design elements in emissions trading schemes that influence the use of biomass. It then discusses the experiences with the EU-ETS so far and compares the design elements of the EU-ETS with different existing and emerging trading schemes in the US, Australia and New Zealand, with focus on factors that may influence the use of biomass. Furthermore, the paper analyses how incentives for bioenergy change as the price of carbon changes and which trade offs may have to be considered, if emissions trading schemes are linked.

Keywords
Bioenergy Category

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a powerful tool that may be used to quantify the environmental impacts of products and services. It includes all processes, from cradle-to-grave, along the supply chain of the product. When analysing energy systems, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (primarily CO2, CH4 and N2O) are the impact of primary concern. In using LCA to determine the climate change mitigation benefits of bioenergy, the life cycle emissions of the bioenergy system are compared with the emissions for a reference energy system. The selection of reference energy system can strongly affect the outcome.
 
When reviewing the literature one finds large ranges of GHG emissions per unit of energy from LCA studies of similar bioenergy systems. The differences occur for a multitude of reasons including differences in technologies, system boundaries, and reference systems. Some studies may be incomplete in that the bioenergy system and reference system provide different services. Others may omit some sources of emissions (e.g. land use change).
 
This paper discusses key criteria for comprehensive LCAs based on IEA Bioenergy Task 38 case studies. LCAs of the GHG balance of four different bioenergy systems and their counterpart reference system are highlighted using the case study examples.
 
The first example investigates heat production from woody biomass and grasses. This study shows that the emissions saved for the same type of service can vary due to the source of the biomass. The bioenergy systems studied reduce GHG emissions by 75-85% as compared to the counterpart reference systems.
 
In the second example, electricity is produced from woody biomass using two different technologies with different efficiencies. Depending on the technology, the biomass must
be transported different distances. The example illustrates the importance of the efficiency of the system and the small impact of soil organic carbon (SOC) decline in comparison
with emissions saved. Since the bioenergy systems include carbon sequestration, they reduce GHG emissions by 108-128% as compared to the counterpart reference systems.
 
A biogas plant providing combined heat and power is analysed in the third example, which illustrates the importance of finding a beneficial use for the heat produced, and of controlling fugitive emissions. In the optimal configuration of closed storage and maximised use of heat, the biogas system reduces emissions by 71% as compared to the counterpart reference system. This reduction decreases to 44% when the heat is not fully used and to only 27% if fugitive emissions are not controlled.
 
In the final example the bioenergy system provides biodiesel for transport. This example demonstrates the importance of the use of co-products, as the same bioenergy chain produces very different emissions savings per kilometre depending on whether the co-product is used as a material or combusted for energy. Compared to the reference system, the bioenergy system reduce GHG emissions by 18% and 42% when the co-products are used for energy or materials respectively.
 
Similar to the case studies presented here, published studies find that GHG mitigation is greater where biomass is used for heat and electricity applications rather than for liquid transport fuels. Overall, the emissions savings from bioenergy systems tend to be similar to that of other renewable energy sources.

The IPCC SRREN report addresses information needs of policymakers, the private sector and civil society on the potential of renewable energy sources for the mitigation of climate change, providing a comprehensive assessment of renewable energy technologies and related policy and financial instruments. The IPCC report was a multinational collaboration and synthesis of peer reviewed information: Reviewed, analyzed, coordinated, and integrated current high quality information. The OBP International Sustainability activities contributed to the Bioenergy chapter, technology cost annex as well as lifecycle assessments and sustainability information.

Email
ethan.warner@nrel.gov

There is a strong societal need to evaluate and understand the sustainability of biofuels, especially because of the significant increases in production mandated by many countries, including the United States. Sustainability will be a strong factor in the regulatory environment and investments in biofuels. Biomass feedstock production is an important contributor to environmental, social, and economic impacts from biofuels. This study presents a systems approach where the agricultural, energy, and environmental sectors are considered as components of a single system, and environmental liabilities are used as recoverable resources for biomass feedstock production. We focus on efficient use of land and water resources. We conducted a spatial analysis evaluating marginal land and degraded water resources to improve feedstock productivity with concomitant environmental restoration for the state of Nebraska. Results indicate that utilizing marginal land resources such as riparian and roadway buffer strips, brownfield sites, and marginal agricultural land could produce enough feedstocks to meet a maximum of 22% of the energy requirements of the state compared to the current supply of 2%. Degraded water resources such as nitrate-contaminated groundwater and wastewater were evaluated as sources of nutrients and water to improve feedstock productivity. Spatial overlap between degraded water and marginal land resources was found to be as high as 96% and could maintain sustainable feedstock production on marginal lands. Other benefits of implementing this strategy include feedstock intensification to decrease biomass transportation costs, restoration of contaminated water resources, and mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions.

Phone
Email
ggopalakrishnan@anl.gov
Data Source
Environmental Science & Technology
Contact Person
Gayathri Gopalakrishnan
Author
Gayathri Gopalakrishnan

The United States shares with many other countries the goal of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change “to achieve . . . stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.”1 The critical role of new technologies in achieving this goal is underscored by the fact that most anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHGs) emitted over the next century will come from equipment and infrastructure that has not yet been built. As a result, new technologies and fuels have the potential to transform the nation’s energy system while meeting climate change as well as energy security and other goals.

Phone
Email
marilyn.brown@pubpolicy.gatech.edu
Data Source
Stanford Law and Policy Review
Contact Person
Marilyn A. Brown
Author
Marilyn A. Brown

The preceding two chapters of this volume have discussed physical and economic data bases for global agriculture and forestry, respectively. These form the foundation for the integrated, global land use data base discussed in this chapter. However, in order to utilize these data for global CGE analysis, it is first necessary to integrate them into a global, general equilibrium data base. This integration is the subject of the present chapter

Publication Year
Email
HLEE1@purdue.edu
Contact Person
Huey-Lin Lee
Contact Organization
Centre for Global Trade Analysis
Author
Huey-Lin Lee

This paper describes the GTAP land use data base designed to support integrated assessments of the potential for greenhouse gas mitigation. It disaggregates land use by agro-ecological zone (AEZ). To do so, it draws upon global land cover data bases, as well as state-of-the-art definition of AEZs from the FAO and IIASA. Agro-ecological zoning segments a parcel of land into smaller units according to agro-ecological characteristics, including: precipitation, temperature, soil type, terrain conditions, etc. Each zone has a similar combination of constraints and potential for land use. In the GTAP-AEZ data base, there are 18 AEZs, covering six different lengths of growing period spread over three different climatic zones. Land using activities include crop production, livestock raising, and forestry. In so doing, this extension of the standard GTAP data base permits a much more refined characterization of the potential for shifting land use amongst these different activities. When combined with information on greenhouse gas emissions, this data base permits economists interested in integrated assessment of climate change to better assess the role of land use change in greenhouse gases mitigation strategies.

Keywords
Publication Year
Email
HLEE1@purdue.edu
Contact Person
Huey-Lin Lee
Contact Organization
Centre for Global Trade Analysis
Bioenergy Category
Author
Huey-Lin Lee

The paper describes the on-going project of the GTAP land use data base. We also present the GTAPE-AEZ model, which illustrates how land use and land-based emissions can be incorporated in the CGE framework for Integrated Assessment (IA) of climate change policies. We follow the FAO fashion of agro-ecological zoning (FAO, 2000; Fischer et al, 2002) to identify lands located in six zones. Lands located in a specific AEZ have similar (or homogenous) soil, landform and climatic characteristics. The six AEZs range over a spectrum of length of growing period (LGP) for which their climate characteristics can support for crop growing. AEZ 1 covers the land of the temperature and moisture regime that is able to support length of growing period (LGP) up to 60 days per annum. On the other end of the LGP spectrum, lands in AEZ 6 can support a LGP from 270 to 360 days per annum. Crop growing, livestock breeding, and timber plantation are dispersed on lands of each AEZ of the six, whichever meets their climatic and edaphic requirements. In GTAPE-AEZ, we assume that land located in a specific AEZ can be moved only between sectors that the land is appropriate for their use. That is, land is mobile between crop, livestock and forestry sectors within, but not across, AEZ’s. In the

Keywords
Publication Year
Email
HLEE1@purdue.edu
Attachment
Contact Person
Huey-Lin Lee
Contact Organization
Centre for Global Trade Analysis
Author
Lee, Huey-Lin
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