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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary D Descriptions of Agency Activities Presented at the Forum on Biofuels and Sustainability1 1 Presentations are available online at http://sustainability.nationalacademies.org/Forum.shtml
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary TITLE OF PROJECT OR PROGRAM: Renewable Energy Assessment Program (REAP) AGENCY: USDA Agricultural Research Service PROJECT/PROGRAM DESCRIPTION Domestic ethanol production is a strategy for reducing dependence on imported energy and release of greenhouse gases from use of fossil-energy-derived motor vehicle fuel. Federal and state governments are encouraging the use of ethanol. Initially energy crops, such as switchgrass, willow, and poplar, were targeted as sources of bio-energy, recently crop residues, especially corn stover and wheat straw, have been identified as a source of cellulosic biomass. However, the amount of crop residue needed to protect soil from erosion and to sustain soil organic carbon (SOC) stores constrains residue removal for bio-energy. Research over the past century has shown conclusively that crop production practices result in loss of SOC. Typically loss of SOC has detrimental effects on soil productivity and quality. Our objectives are to determine the amount of residue needed to protect the soil resource, compare economic implication based on the value of stover as bio-energy and C source, and provide initial harvest rate recommendations and guidelines. Products from this work will be 1) guidelines for management practices supporting sustainable harvest of residue, 2) algorithm(s) estimating the amount of crop residue that can be sustainably harvested, and 3) decision support tools and guidelines describing the economic trade-off between residue harvest and retention to sequester soil C. Delivery of this knowledge and these products to farmers and the biomass ethanol industry will promote harvest of stover and crop residues in a manner that preserves the capacity our soil to produce food, feed, fiber, and fuel. DESCRIBE ANY NOTABLE RESULTS, OUTCOMES OR IMPACTS TO DATE, IF ANY: PERFORMERS/OTHER PARTNERS (FEDERAL, STATES, OR LOCAL): ARS laboratories in Lincoln, NE; Mandan, ND; Auburn, AL; St. Paul, MN; Ames, IA; Ft. Collins, CO; Pendleton, OR; Morris MN; W. Lafayette, IN. PROJECT PERIOD: Start Date: Jun 01, 2006 End Date: May 31, 2011
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary FUNDING LEVELS (CURRENT OR PROPOSED): Note this is not a separately funded project. Participating scientists contribute their time and resources out of their base funding to projects falling under ARS Soils, Bioenergy and Global Change National Programs.
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary TITLE OF PROJECT OR PROGRAM: Future Midwest Landscapes Study AGENCY: EPA, Office of Research and Development PROJECT DESCRIPTION Geographic focus The Future Midwest Landscapes (FML) Study is a place-based component of the EPA’s Ecological Research Program (ERP), and shares the ERP’s goals of conserving ecosystem services by providing support and tools that enable decision-makers, from national to local scales, to recognize and account for these services (see ERP summary). The FML will focus on the valuable and productive agroecosystems of the Midwest, using an alternative futures approach to model varying trajectories of landscape change and to evaluate implications of these changes for ecosystem services and, thus, human well-being. Because the rapid growth of the biofuels industry currently is the dominant driver of landscape change in the region, the future scenarios to be examined will center on biofuels development, and the study area (see red outline in Figure 1) will include locations of current and projected change. The FML project goals are as follows: Understand how current and projected land uses affect the ecosystem services provided by Midwestern landscapes Provide spatially explicit information that will enable EPA Regions and Programs to articulate sustainable approaches to environmental management in the Midwest Develop web-based tools depicting alternative futures so users can evaluate trade-offs affecting ecosystem services. The alternative-futures research approach will involve the following steps (Liu et al.): Scenario Definition Stakeholder meetings will explore values related to alternative futures for the Midwest. Two distinct types of future scenarios will be created, differing in how landscape change is approached: Forecasting (‘what-if’) scenarios will project the landscapes that would be expected to result from a divergent set of potential energy and agricultural policies. These landscapes will be analyzed to evaluate the regional-scale impacts on ecosystem services as well as implications to national-scale issues such
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary as chemical runoff into the Mississippi River and Lake Erie and loss of critical migratory bird habitat. Backcasting (‘how-could’) scenarios will entail a suite of landscapes that seek to emphasize all ecosystem services by placing crops according to soil erodability and productivity, opportunities to provide wildlife habitat, protection of drinking water, etc. These scenarios will help users to explore what is possible and to identify goals at the local or regional level. Scenario Construction Future economic drivers will be modeled for each forecasting scenario using the FAPRI system (agricultural sector) and MARKAL (energy sector). Maps of projected landscape change corresponding to each (forecasting and backcasting) scenario will be produced. Scenario Analysis Using models of agronomy, hydrology, biogeochemistry and habitat suitability, the following ecosystem services (and well-being effects) will be estimated, to the extent feasible, and compared to baseline conditions: Soil productivity (affects food and energy security) Carbon balance (affects climate)
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary Predator refugia (controls pests) Hydrologic and water quality regulation (affect water supply, flooding, downstream aquatic ecosystems, recreation) Wildlife habitat and other natural areas (affect biodiversity and recreation) Air quality (affects health) Scenario/Risk Assessment Web-based tools will be used to visualize and present results. The landscape analysis methods developed for the FML Study will be implemented as a web-based environmental decision toolkit (EDT), similar to other toolkits previously created under EPA’s Regional Vulnerability Assessment Program (ReVA). We anticipate that the future FML-EDT will allow users to compare alternative Midwestern futures by examining trade-offs—that is, changes in the provision of a wide variety of ecosystem services—at both local and regional scales. For local-scale decision-makers, we will also investigate the feasibility of incorporating ecosystem services into existing software applications that support decisions at watershed or farm scales. Risk Management By initially engaging potential users in EPA’s regional and program offices, USDA, and farm, industry and conservation associations, we expect to be able to maintain stakeholder involvement and directly support uses of these tools. DESCRIBE ANY NOTABLE RESULTS, OUTCOMES OR IMPACTS TO DATE, IF ANY: To date we have held planning meetings in EPA Regions 5 (Chicago) and 7 (Kansas City). We are in the process of establishing cooperative agreements PERFORMERS/OTHER PARTNERS (FEDERAL, STATES, OR LOCAL): EPA Region 7 (Kansas City) EPA Region 5 (Chicago) Midwest Spatial Decision Support System Partnership Kansas State University Iowa State University PROJECT PERIOD: Start Date: Jan. 2005 End Date: Dec. 31, 2014 FUNDING LEVELS (CURRENT OR PROPOSED): 20 scientist FTE and $1M extramural support annually (proposed)
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary TITLE OF PROJECT OR PROGRAM: Bioenergy from Forests- Moving Science to Practice and Issues of Sustainability AGENCY: U.S. Forest Service PROJECT/PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: The forestry sector in the United States has been a major source of renewable energy and currently produces over half of the renewable energy generated in the US. This industrial sector is the logical platform for expanding forest based energy in the form of heat, power, and transportation fuels. As opportunities expand potential for wood-based energy, there are sustainability issues that fundamentally touch on meeting the needs of people today without compromising our ability to meet future generation’s needs, as well as careful consideration of the environmental, social, and economic dimensions of forest-based biofuels. In order to address the topic of sustainability and bioenergy from forests, it is important to consider the full continuum beginning with forests growing on the landscape; decisions about when, where, how and why we remove biomass to produce energy and co-products; and advances in efficiency and effectiveness of converting biomass to energy in what will likely be a carbon constrained future. As each of these segments of the continuum is discussed, examples are presented of activities currently underway in both R&D and in practice that demonstrate how the forestry sector is addressing the issues that relate to sustainability. Because sustainability also needs to be discussed in terms of scale, examples are presented that show how forest bioenergy contributes to community, regional, national, and international sustainability. Growing healthy and productive forests on the landscape has been a focus of R&D for nearly 100 years. Studies that evaluate long term site productivity have provided insight into repeated removal of biomass and effects on nutrient cycling, and studies that evaluate the needs of wildlife and the hydrological cycle have provided insight into how biomass removal strategies either impact or can improve these other values. Understanding trends and conditions of the forest resource in order to provide accurate feedstock assessment information for local, regional, and national planning is critical because wood used for energy is available for biofuels only in the context of other forest products and values. For example, plantation forests in the Southern US were planted primarily for the pulpwood market, but as this market shifts more to using pulp imports, then management of these forests may shift to respond to a biofuels market when conducting forest thinning. Reducing fuel loading on forests in order to reduce fire risk around communities in the west also provides a local source of biomass for smaller scale bioenergy applications.
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary Research over the past 25 years has provided a valuable foundation for planting fast growing forest biomass (such as hybrid poplar) to meet demands of a growing bioenergy market, and as part of a diversified biomass crop feed-stock strategy. Continuing the period assessments that forms the basis for the National Report on Sustainable Forestry provides the ties and linkages among the various dimensions of managing forests across landscapes, how forests are being impacted by climate change, and the need for adaptation to and mitigation of these effects. Decisions about when, where, how, and why we remove biomass to produce energy and co-products occur in the context of land owner/land management objectives. The objectives of public land management are described in their land and resource management plans and often include restoring ecological processes and functions, improving resilience to climate stressors, improving habitat, reducing risk of wildfire, mitigating impacts of fire, insects and disease, and producing forest products for society. Private forest land owners have economic and social objectives along with interests in maintaining healthy and productive forests for a variety of purposes. Economic incentives to maintain “working” forests on the landscape rather than convert the private land to other uses is a critical part of the trade-off considerations. Vast areas of forests were historically cleared in order to develop productive agriculture and grow our cities. The potential for reestablishing forest energy crops on marginal crop land or as longer term conservation areas will likely be part of the future dialog to meet land owners needs and provide longer term options for the country. Biodiversity considerations will help guide where expanded wood energy crops can provide multiple benefits, or may limit how and where they are planted. The ability to implement projects with a significant component of biomass is challenging primarily due to the high cost of harvesting and transportation of large volumes of lower value materials. R&D has provided improved harvesting and transportation strategies such as biomass bundlers, and roll off bins to help address transportation costs. This is the highest cost center and is currently only economical when higher value products help pay for handling the lower value biomass. Economic studies have demonstrated a radius of about 50 miles for economically transporting biomass to a bioenergy facility, and these historically have been for power production. Most biomass that is used for bioenergy today are residues that are already at a mill and are integrated to provide heat and power, adding additional value by residue disposal. Urban areas also provide woody biomass residues that can be used for bio-energy. The city of St. Paul, MN, heats and cools, and provides electricity to the downtown area from a central facility using clean wood materials from urban tree trimming, storm damage and forest land clearing. Matching the scale of the bioenergy project to the needs of the community and to the forest biomass supply is a critical part of making sure the bioenergy is sustainable. Understanding the
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary full carbon cycle of using hybrid poplar trees as a feedstock for this facility has been one of the dimensions of R&D and management collaborative efforts. A growing area of potential trade-off in forest management activities is to offset emissions generated from burning of slash piles and instead burn the material in controlled combustion to produce bioenergy. Currently this is feasible for co-firing with coal or other fossil fuels or as dedicated biomass boilers. As the concept of a biorefineries is demonstrated at commercial scales R&D continues to evaluate this potential trade-off, including exploring how reducing hazardous fuels may result in smaller and less intense wildfires, and may result in reduced emissions from wildfire. This is an active area of R&D discussed in the separate Alder Springs project in California. A 10-year stewardship contract in Arizona demonstrates how collaboration can help bridge interests and provide a landscape level strategy that is socially, economically, and ecologically acceptable to a wide group of stakeholders. The final major focus of R&D is advance efficiency and effectiveness of converting biomass to energy in a carbon constrained future. When woody materials are converted to pulp to make paper and other wood fiber products there are by-products and co-products that can be used for biofuels. Currently the lignin is burned to generate heat and power for the pulp mill. However, both the lignin, and the 5- and 6-carbon sugars in the wood pulp are the essential building blocks for biofuels. R&D is providing economic analysis to determine if forest biorefinery concepts are feasible, evaluate alternative production models, and is developing pricing and financial models. R&D is improving pentose fermentation, pretreatment of cellulose, extent to which co-products can be produces prior to pulping, and developing products from lignin. Industrial application of the new methods involves scaling up and testing with industrial partners. Pyrolysis of woody material into a high energy-density-intermediate product is the focus of R&D efforts that could also help with more economical shipping. New gasification technology to increase intermediate gas production and reduce char formation provides opportunities for using a more diverse feedstock mix. For each conversion technology being studied, there is an associated feed-stock characterization component in order to match the forest biomass material with compatible processes for bioenergy. Sustainability requires careful consideration of the local nature of woody biomass, and how it fits into a large scheme of cellulosic crops and residues that may be available for biofuels. Finally, R&D using life cycle analysis is demonstrating the net energy impacts considering the full continuum beginning with growing forests through energy production in order to fully consider benefits and trade-offs of various feedstocks for bioenergy, and for evaluating biofuels as compared to the fossil fuels they replace. There has been extensive research that demonstrates the life cycle benefits of using wood products when compared to steel and concrete for many types of construction. Bioenergy currently used in processing of wood
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary products is one of the reasons. Similar analysis of the full carbon cycle for bio-energy from forests is underway. PERFORMERS/OTHER PARTNERS (FEDERAL, STATES, OR LOCAL): Forest Service R&D works with a wide variety of partners to accomplish this work. Partners include other federal agencies such as the Department of Energy, Environmental Protection Agency, researchers in other USDA Agencies, and a wide variety of university scientists. Forest genetics and conversion technology have also included private industrial partners. Implementing research and demonstration projects on the ground frequently involves National Forest System and other public land managers, or State Forestry and Environmental Agencies. Local collaborative groups in many areas are helping build consensus about how bio-energy projects fit into the local and regional business options for achieving land management objectives. Governor’s associations such as the Western Governors are building regional strategies and options for incorporating bioenergy into a “clean and diversified energy” vision.
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary TITLE OF PROJECT OR PROGRAM: Integrated Mapping of Biofuels Feedstock Production and Transportation for Systems Visualization and Optimization AGENCY: U.S. Department of Transportation PROJECT/PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: One unintended consequence of a large scale shift from fossil fuels to biofuels may be localized undercapacity of the Nation’s freight transportation system. Because feedstocks are roughly an order of magnitude less energy dense than fossil fuels, transportation of the required large volumes of these feedstocks over long distances may be unrealistic from both a transportation capacity and a lifecycle energy perspective. In addition, because ethanol is hydrophilic, it is not possible to use current pipelines for transport. Instead, it is necessary to rely on barge, train, and trucks. Depending on where feedstocks are produced and processed and where the resulting biofuels are used, some roads, barge routes, and rail lines may see a significant increase in freight ton-miles. A synthesis of results from Sun Grant and DOE research is being used to populate a suite of GIS tools for future biomass development planning to address these questions in the context of other lifecycle costs and impacts for biofuels. The Sun Grant Centers are currently in the process of integrating multi-modal transportation maps with agricultural feedstock production maps. Among other applications, the integrated GIS tools will be used to evaluate the potential impacts of the transportation infrastructure on biomass energy and materials development and visa versa. These tools will enable focused trade-offs for different feedstock production options and geographic distribution of processing and preprocessing options. They will enable a rigorous trade-off between centralized and distributed production and processing options as the feedstocks and production technologies mature. DESCRIBE ANY NOTABLE RESULTS, OUTCOMES OR IMPACTS TO DATE, IF ANY: N/A PERFORMERS/OTHER PARTNERS (FEDERAL, STATES, OR LOCAL): Federal funding and research partners: US Department of Transportation, US Department of Energy, US Department of Agriculture.
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary Charter principal institutions: Sun Grant Association, Cornell University, Oklahoma State University, Oregon State University, South Dakota State University, and University of Tennessee. Participants are from the above public and private institutions. PROJECT PERIOD: The project was started in 2006. FUNDING LEVELS (CURRENT OR PROPOSED): $0 currently.
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary TITLE OF PROJECT OR PROGRAM: Biobased R&D AGENCY: U.S. Department of Transportation, Research and Innovative Technology Administration PROJECT/PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: In 2006, the Sun Grant Initiative (http://www.sungrant.org) and the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) (http://www.biodiesel.org) received funding from the US DOT to conduct biobased R&D with a focus on addressing DOT priorities. This project is coordinated by the 5 regional sun grant universities and the NBB and is addressing a wide range of research items necessary to develop biofuels as a significant, sustainable contributor to the national energy needs. The projects will address several high-level topic areas including: Sustainable feedstock development Infrastructure analysis Economic analysis Efficient conversion technologies, include those emplacing local and distributed production Emissions and fuel quality testing This project is of great relevance due to increasing interest in reducing transportation contribution to greenhouse gas emissions, and the need to effectively plan and invest in energy transport infrastructure. The funding recipients are working closely with industry and agriculture partners to facilitate commercialization or large scale demonstration of successful laboratory and university based research. The USDOT is working with the grantees to maximize the connection to DOT research priorities and help ensure that many of the systems analysis requirements are conducted. These include infrastructure requirements for feedstock and fuel transport, life-cycle and environmental impact analysis. Although applied laboratory research is important and a component of the program emphasis is placed on technologies that can be successfully integrated into the transportation/energy system. DESCRIBE ANY NOTABLE RESULTS, OUTCOMES OR IMPACTS TO DATE, IF ANY: Selection of individual projects and partners.
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary PROJECT PERIOD: November 2006 through December 2014 PARTNER FUNDING LEVELS (CURRENT OR PROPOSED): $50,000,000 authorized $41.66 to the 5 sun grant regional universities $8.33 Million to the National Biodiesel board AGENCY: Department of Energy (Office of the Biomass Program) PROJECT/PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: Biomass research has been a cornerstone of DOE’s renewable energy research, development and deployment efforts over the last 25 years. In order to encourage the economic livelihood of a thriving biofuel industry, the Office of the Biomass Program (OBP) at the Department of Energy supports research and development aimed at assessing the impacts of biofuels on the environment, including impacts to land, water, and air from energy production and use. Included in this mission is a goal to substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions by accelerating the adoption of renewable energy technologies. A clear driver of the OBP’s activities is the President’s goal to increase the use of biofuels and other alternative fuels in the transportation sector to replace 20% of the gasoline demand in the United States by 2017 (referred to as the “20 in 10” goal). Meeting this goal will require: significant and rapid advancements in biomass feedstock and conversion technologies; availability of large volumes of sustainable biomass feedstock; demonstration and deployment of large-scale integrated biofuels production facilities; and biofuels infrastructure development efforts. In addition, the existing agricultural, forestry and commercial sectors will be making the decisions to invest in biomass systems—from shifting land use, to building capital-intensive biorefineries, to establishing the infrastructure and public vehicle fleet for ethanol distribution and end use—in the context of economic viability (including as it relates to environmental sustainability) and the needs of the marketplace. Research and Development Priorities related to Biofuels and Sustainability. OBP’s R&D has led the effort to develop technology necessary to sustainably produce, harvest, and convert a variety of biomass feedstocks, as well as to deploy the resulting biofuels. Core R&D on feedstock production and logistics and biomass conversion technologies is conducted to develop the scientific and technical foundation that will enable the new bioindustry. OBP is looking to advance science in these areas through important collaborations with the DOE Office
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary of Science Bioenergy Centers, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, land grant universities, and private industry. OBP has developed Regional Feedstock Partnerships to begin to realize the sustainability of the resource potential outlined in the Billion Ton Study. This approach facilitates the collaboration of industry, the agricultural community, state and local governments, and USDA and is expected to accelerate the resource readiness, as the cellulosic fuels industry emerges. The core R&D of OBP is organized around the integrated biorefinery concept. The biorefinery helps deliver sustainable and environmentally sound contributions to power, fuels, and products demand while supporting rural economies. Key barriers relevant to this area include ensuring resource sustainability at levels large enough to support large-scale production facilities and maximizing the efficiency of conversion facilities to minimize costs. Energy production from biomass on a large scale will require careful evaluation of U.S. agricultural resources and logistics, as these will likely require a change in paradigm that will take time to implement. Current harvesting, storage and transportation systems are currently inadequate for processing and distribution of biomass on the scale needed to support dramatically larger volumes of biofuels production. Evaluating the current feedstock resource on a national level as well as the potential for future feedstock production in light of environmental constraints is part of OBP’s focus. Major Research and Development Program Areas The primary program areas related to ecosystems services and sustainability within DOE OBP are (1) sustainable feedstock production, (2) sustainable harvest, and (3) sustainable biofuels production. Sustainable feedstock production Existing data on the environmental effects of feedstock production and residue collection are not adequate to support lifecycle analysis of biorefinery systems. The lack of information and decision support tools to predict effects of residue removal as a function of soil type, and the lack of a selective harvest technology that can evenly remove only desired portions of the residue make it difficult to assure that residue biomass will be collected in a sustainable manner. Until the residue issue is addressed, particularly with regard to corn stover, deployment of the Agricultural Residue pathway will be severely constrained. The production and use of perennial energy crops also raise a number of sustainability questions (such as water and fertilizer inputs, establishment and harvesting impacts on soil, etc.) that have not been comprehensively addressed. A central focus of feedstock production efforts is to establish and maintain Regional Biomass Energy Feedstock Partnerships in collaboration with USDA, the Sun Grant Initiative universities, and other regional partners. Collaborating in this manner will be crucial to overcoming specific geographic issues of varying climatic conditions, soil types, water quality, and land usage. These regional part-
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary nerships are necessary for assessing and quantifying the feedstock resource base because of the diversity of regional feedstocks in terms of growth requirements, climatic differences, and infrastructure needs. Work will focus on: Genetic improvement of crops including yield per acre as well as traits desirable for conversion to biofuels, an effort conducted primarily by USDA, DOE’s Office of Science, land grant universities, and private companies; Regional resource assessments of the types of biomass feedstocks that can be sustainably grown in specific locations across the U.S., including the development of a GIS-based bioenergy atlas; Development of replicated field trials across regions to determine the impact of agricultural residue removal and to evaluate the feasibility of various energy crops; and Analysis of the sustainability of producing specific biomass feedstocks, an effort being addressed by the Regional Feedstock Partnerships, USDA, and OBP analysis efforts. The GIS tool will serve as a spatially referenced database of current and potential feedstock availability and associated environmental and industrial variables to be used in the analysis of future economic and environmental sustainability related to feedstocks. This tool will also serve as a decision support system to inform the location of new feedstock production and processing facilities and to evaluate the resulting contribution potential of biofuels to the “20 in 10” goal (and beyond) that will sustain air and water resources of quality and availability for desired uses. Sustainable harvest Current crop harvesting machinery is unable to selectively harvest desired components of biomass and address the soil carbon and erosion sustainability constraints. Biomass variability places high demand and functional requirements on biomass harvesting equipment. Current systems cannot meet the capacity, efficiency, or delivered price requirements of large cellulosic biorefineries, nor can they effectively deal with the large biomass yields per acre of potential new biomass feedstock crops. In addition, feedstock specifications and standards against which to engineer harvest equipment, technologies, and methods, do not currently exist. A key to success is the ability to convert a wider variety of regionally-available biomass feedstocks and agricultural waste. The Department of Energy is working to establish Regional Biomass Energy Feedstock Partnerships that will identify local opportunities for feedstock development and ethanol production.
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Transitioning to Sustainability Through Research and Development on Ecosystem Services and Biofuels: Workshop Summary Sustainable biofuels production While perhaps the greatest sustainability challenges to biofuel production lie within the feedstock production sector of the biomass-to-bioenergy supply chain, existing projects within OBP extend beyond feedstock production and harvest. Currently, a life cycle assessment (LCA) of the Advanced Energy Initiative is being performed for the 60 billion gallon 30×30 scenario (a scenario for supplying 30% of 2004 motor gasoline demands by 2030). The analysis covers the entire biofuels supply chain from feedstocks to vehicles. The four main areas addressed in the LCA are: land use and soil sustainability, water use impacts, air quality impacts, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions impacts. Also, the GREET model (Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation) is being utilized for an analysis of water demand for biofuel production, energy and GHG emission benefit of biofuels. Included in this project is an expansion of the existing model to include corn ethanol, sugarcane ethanol, and flex-fuel vehicle (FFV) test results. Estimated annual funding levels for research and development activities related to ecosystems services and sustainability: FY 2007 and 2008 funding for biofuels research directly related to sustainability is approximately $5 million. Total Biomass Program Funding supporting all R&D efforts is approximately $150M in FY07.
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