Tag Archives: Greenhouse Gas Emission

How to Measure Land Use Change

Both the U.S. EPA and California’s Air Resources Board are currently considering how and whether to incorporate the indirect effects of U.S. biofuels production on carbon emissions from land use change in other parts of the world. The Renewable Fuel Standard passed by Congress in December 2007 requires inclusion of “significant emissions from land use changes” as part of the life cycle analysis of carbon emissions from biofuels. The Low Carbon Fuel Standard adopted by Read More >

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It’s Carbon Payback Time

A recent study from researchers at the University of Wisconsin takes another look at the “carbon debt” models proposed by Searchinger and Fargione in ScienceXpress earlier this year. Searchinger and Fargione argued that biofuel development in the United States and Europe would lead to the destruction of rainforests and grassland in Brazil and other tropical climates, which would of course release massive amounts of carbon into the atmosphere (See earlier posting). The new study takes Read More >

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UK Study Highlights Uncertainty in Calculating Indirect Land Use Emissions

Britain’s Renewable Fuels Agency this week released the Gallagher Review, a report on the indirect effects of biofuels production that was prompted by the Searchinger and Fargione studies published in Science earlier this year. (See this blog’s earlier post on the forthcoming study.) The summary of the conclusions of the Gallagher Review include some very telling comments: Quantification of GHG emissions from indirect land-use change requires subjective assumptions and contains considerable uncertainty. “Current lifecycle analyses Read More >

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Fuel and the Future: The Future is Not Perfect, But It's Pretty Close

Just this month IEA Bioenergy, released a report called, “Status and outlook for biofuels, other alternative fuels and new vehicles. The report presents an outlook for alternative fuels and motor vehicles. The time period covered extends up to 2030. For anyone who has paid the slightest bit of attention to the news recently, you know that fuel, particularly as it pertains to transportation is becoming more and more critical. And for each of us who Read More >

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Questioning the Relationship Between Biofuels and Food Costs

A new study released by Texas A&M’s Agricultural and Food Policy Center undermines one of the key assumptions used in the studies that attributed a huge “carbon debt” to biofuels. The assumption used by Searchinger et al. is that biofuel production increases the cost of all commodity grains, encouraging countries to convert additional land – such as rainforest, peat land, and savannah – to agricultural production. The Searchinger paper calculates that agricultural production will have Read More >

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