ANOTHER TAKE ON THE BIOFUELS CONUNDRUM
Biofuels and Climate Change: Pulpwood to the Rescue? New study concludes that biofuels can be part of climate-energy solution.
Bill Chameides, November 19, 2013 (National Geographic)
"...[T]he so-called Searchinger Hypothesis [after Tim Searchinger, who is generally credited with reshaping the world debate on bioenergy, argues] that, once one takes land conversion into account, the biofuels climate picture goes from a positive to a negative…[because when] we take crops normally used for food, and use them as feedstock for biofuels instead (e.g., corn ethanol or soybean biodiesel), that can create a food supply deficit…[and making up for that by converting] land from non-agricultural to agricultural can effectively create carbon emissions… [Wood Bioenergy and Land Use; A Challenge to the Searchinger Hypothesis concludes that industrial forests and supplemental dedicated fuelwood plantations can economically produce large levels of biomass/biodfuels without compromising crop production]…A key and critical assumption underpinning the [argument] is that the technology for producing biofuels from cellulosic material (as opposed to sugars from crops like corn) will advance enough to make biofuels generated from cellulose economically viable…” click here for more