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Diane Publishing Books
Increasing Feedstock Production for Biofuels: Economic Drivers, Environmental Implications, and the Role of Research
Gale Buchanan (ed); John Mizroch (ed)
A large expansion in ethanol production, along with research and innovation to develop second-generation biofuels, is underway in the U.S., spurred by volatile oil prices and energy policies. This increased focus on ethanol and other biofuels is an important element of U.S. economic, energy, environmental, and national security policies. The goal of this report is to inform research recommendations to address the constraints surrounding availability of biomass feedstocks. To meet this goal, an economic assessment, which links to an analysis of the consequences for greenhouse gas emissions and sustainability, has been developed that encompasses feedstock production from agriculture and forestry sources. The boundaries of the analysis — a domestic focus on feedstocks and up to the farmgate or forest roadside — circumscribe the findings. Uncertainty about the conversion of feedstocks to biofuels, transportation of both, international effects, and consideration of displaced petroleum fuels are beyond the scope of this study. Four questions guide the analysis: What feedstocks and at what price? What is the regional distribution of feedstock production? What are the effects of alternative investments in research on feedstocks? What are the consequences for sustainability and greenhouse gases related to feedstock production? Illus.
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