Tag Archives: Greenhouse Gas Emission

Scientists Call for EPA to Delay Rulemaking Process

In a letter submitted yesterday to Stephen Johnson, the Administrator of the EPA seven leading scientists called for a delay in the planned October 31st rulemaking citing several concerns, among them, “Of particular concern is that the EPA appears to be relying heavily on the February 2008 paper concerning potential land use change impacts authored by Searchinger et al. (Science, 319, 1238-40, 2008).  We belive this would be a grave error.” In addition to the Read More >

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Clouding Assumptions

Science magazine this week published an exchange between Vinod Khosla, the venture capitalist who has invested a great deal in alternative energy, and Timothy Searchinger and coauthor Richard Houghton critiquing and defending the February 2008 study, “Use of U.S. Croplands for Biofuels Increases Greenhouse Gases Through Emissions from Land-Use Change” The exchange reveals some of the nuances of indirect land use change arguments that have not been addressed. Khosla’s comments raise two important issues, allocation Read More >

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EPA Drafting Rules on International Land Use Change

The U.S. EPA is expected to release a proposed rulemaking for implementing the lifecycle analysis requirements for biofuels under the renewable fuels standard. (Check out the EPA’s official blog, even though it contains no posts on this subject.) Estimating the emissions generated through the production of biofuels has been controversial, particularly with respect to how land-use changes affect emissions. E&E TV’s OnPoint recently interviewed Jack Huttner, vice president of Dupont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol, about the Read More >

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What Do You Know, Oil Does Cause Land Use Change

In a recent post, I questioned the apparent assumption in the current debate over greenhouse gas emissions from biofuels that petroleum gasoline production does not have an effect on land use change. It turns out there is a well-developed literature on the direct land use change effects of oil exploration in the Amazon and South America. Chris W. Baynard of the University of North Florida Department of Geology presented a study, “Venezuela’s Heavy Oil Belt: Read More >

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Life Cycle Analysis, International Land Use Change and Uncertainty

Bruce Dale, University Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at Michigan State University, shared this presentation that he gave during a webinar hosted by the North Central Bioeconomy Consortium. In it, he highlights the number of factors in Life Cycle Analysis and Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC) models that produce uncertainty – in other words, if the assumptions or data for these factors change, how much do the results change. Dale is primarily examining the “carbon Read More >

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