Author Archive: Paul Winters

Paul Winters

Paul is a communications director for BIO. An alumnus of UCLA and the University of California Davis, he moved to Washington, DC, in 2000.

Latest Posts

British Government to Study Indirect Impacts of Biofuels

Last week, Britain’s Renewable Fuels Agency (RFA) launched a series of studies of the indirect land-use impacts of biofuels, following a lecture by Princeton’s Tim Searchinger, lead author of “Use of U.S. Croplands for Biofuels Increases Greenhouse Gases Through Emissions from Land Use Change” published in Science in February. The RFA intends to publish a draft report in May, prior to negotiation of EU-wide biofuels targets to 2020 in Brussels later this year. Britain is set Read More >

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Do Biofuels Always Bring Rainforest Destruction?

The debate over “carbon debt” created by changes in land use has recently expanded to include the issue of competition between food and fuel and its effect on developing countries. David Tilman of the University of Minnesota, one of the lead authors of the “Land Clearing and the Biofuel Carbon Debt” article in Science, recently held an interview with Newsweek magazine in which he says, In order to grow biofuels, farmers have gone to fertile Read More >

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Trying to Define the Indirect Land Use Issue

Michigan State University Professor of Chemical Engineering Bruce Dale recently sent a letter to colleagues interpreting the analyses by Searchinger et al. and Fargione et al. in Science. In the letter, Dale says, “The Searchinger and Fargione argument at its root is this: corn (and perhaps cellulosic) ethanol is not sustainable because it will divert land use for animal feed (over 70% of corn is fed to animals) to new lands that will release large Read More >

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Is the Debate on Land Use Over?

The full implications of the German Marshall Fund and Nature Conservancy articles in Science and the agenda and arguments of environmental and conservation advocates are coming more into focus. Consider comments posted by Nathanael Greene of the Natural Resources Defense Council on his Switchboard: While we still do not have international protocols that pay to protect or simply prohibit clearing of carbon rich lands, emissions from cleared land driven by marginally higher demand is simply Read More >

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Biofuels Feedstocks – Yield Matters

The following post was submitted by Richard Hamilton, president and CEO of Ceres, Inc. Technology is playing a critical role in maximizing the inherent advantages of dedicated energy crops. Through advanced plant breeding, public and private researchers are increasing yields both in terms of tons per acre (field yields) and in terms of gallons per ton (through traits that improve conversion). Higher yields not only have a significant impact on reducing production costs of cellulosic Read More >

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