Ucla transportation Land Use Environment Connection Symposium


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An Overview of Biofuels

  • UCLA Transportation - Land Use - Environment Connection Symposium

  • Global Energy and Climate Change

  • New Vehicles, New Fuels II: Exploring the Alternatives

  •   UCLA Lake Arrowhead Conference Center

  • October 23, 2006

  • Steve Shaffer

  • Office of Agriculture and Environmental Stewardship

  • California Department of Food and Agriculture


Overview

  • What can biofuels be made from?

  • How are they produced?

  • What are these biofuels – now and in the future?

  • What must we consider?

    • Global energy and natural resources trends
    • Issues – opportunities and challenges
  • Summary and conclusions





Feedstock Sources

  • Conventional crops – corn, sorghum, sugar cane, sugar beets, soybeans, canola/rapeseed, other oil seed crops, trees –pine, fir, poplar

  • Residuals – Agriculture, urban, forestry

    • Manure, trees and vines, straws, food precessing
    • Green, food, paper and cardboard, wood
    • Mill, pulp, slash, thinnings
  • Dedicated crops – grasses, trees, other plants, aquatic systems (algae) and other microbial systems



Biomass Energy Potential



Feedstock Quantity

  • USDA/DOE – 1.3 billion tons/years – optimistic?

  • California – Biomass Collaborative

    • Over 80 million tons produced
    • Potential sustainable use - 30 million tons
    • By 2050 - 48 million tons
    • Current use – 5 million tons


Biomass Energy Potential

  • 1 billion tons of biomass =

    • 35 billion to 70 billion gallons of gasoline equivalent (GGE)
    • 1 million MWe


Conversion Processes

  • Combustion

  • Gasification

  • Pyrolysis

  • Thermal depolymerization

  • Hydrolysis – chemical and enymatic

  • Synthesis

  • Extraction

  • Fermentation

  • Concentration – distillation and filtration



Fuels

  • Alcohols – ethanol, methanol, butanol, etc.

  • Ethers – MTBE, ETBE, TAME, DME

  • Biodiesel – esterified plant and animal fats

  • Bio-derived oils – hydrocarbons – bio-oil, Fischer-Tropsch diesel.

  • Biomethane – purified biogas.

  • Electricity – combustion, gasification, fuel cell.

  • Hydrogen – secondary product reformed from above, or primary production e.g. algae.



Global Trends

  • Human Population

  • Arable land

  • Water supplies and use

  • Energy supplies and use

  • Atmospheric chemistry - (GHGs) and criteria pollutants

  • Biodiversity

  • Consolidation versus decentralization



United Nations Data

  • 1997 Report by the Commission on Sustainable Development

  • Population Trends

  • Land Use Trends

  • Water Use Trends

  • Food Supply Trends



Population

  • The current global human population stands at six billion. It is expected to grow to 8.3 billion by 2025 and to 9.3 billion by 2050.



Global Water Consumption



Land and Water

  • 20% of the world’s cropland is irrigated, but produces over 40% of the food supply.

  • The UN report estimates that to provide a healthy diet to the world’s population in 2025, a 50% to 100% increase in water for food production will be needed. The bulk of the increase in food production will have to come from irrigated land.

  • A series of local and regional water crises with global implications may put global food supplies in jeopardy.



Oil Price Trends



US CO2 Emissions



Issues – (Sustainability)

  • Life cycle cost analyses

    • Wells-to-Wheels; LEM/LCA; cradle-to-grave;
    • Wang; Delucchi; Kammen and others
  • Energy quality/utility

    • Density
    • Flexibility
    • Transportability
    • Storability
    • Efficiency


Issues - continued

  • Multiple objectives management

    • A new definition of agriculture – food, feed, fiber, flowers, fuel, fauna,
  • Public Policy

    • Agriculture – crop subsidies; land use; food vs. fuel
    • Energy – supply, cost, security
    • Environmental – climate change; forest health; urban waste management; AQ; WQ; soil conservation; biodiversity
    • Economic – balance of trade; local jobs and taxes
    • Geopolitical – national security


Issues – still more

  • Technology

    • Genetically modified organisms
    • Nanotechnology
    • Competition – nuclear and (hopefully) clean coal; wind and solar
    • Environmental justice and NIMBY
  • …and Energy Efficiency



Conclusions

  • Biofuels will contribute to sustainable energy supplies – how much and in what form are yet to be determined.

  • Several Keys –

    • Informed policy based on continuous research and development
    • Strategies that achieve multiple objectives and benefits
    • Public policies that recognize multiple benefits and internalize external disbenefits



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