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Unaccounted emissions from biofuels Alex Kaat, UNFCCC SBSTA event June 9 2011. What makes biofuels attractive…. UNFCCC as driving force: No accounting for combustion No mandatory accounting LULUCF An.1 No accounting (indirect) LUC non An. 1 Biofuel use: a result of climate policies

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Unaccounted emissions from biofuels

Alex Kaat, UNFCCC SBSTA event

June 9 2011


What makes biofuels attractive
What makes biofuels attractive…

UNFCCC as driving force:

  • No accounting for combustion

  • No mandatory accounting LULUCF An.1

  • No accounting (indirect) LUC non An. 1

    Biofuel use: a result of

  • climate policies

  • that have ignored land use emissions


Land use under different scenarios
Land use under different scenarios

  • Reference pathway (no serious climate policy)

Adapted from:

M Wise et al. Science May 2009;324:1183-86


Land use under different scenarios1
Land use under different scenarios

  • CO2 emission target of 450 ppm

  • Policies address fossil andterrestrial emissions.

Adapted from:

M Wise et al. Science May 2009;324:1183-86


Land use under different scenarios2
Land use under different scenarios

  • Modeled scenario (theoretical).

  • CO2 emission target of 450 ppm

  • Policies address fossil but notterrestrial emissions.

Adapted from:

M Wise et al. Science May 2009;324:1183-86


Land use emissions very substantial
Land use emissions: very substantial

Adapted from: J. Fargione et al. Science February 2008; 319: 1235-1238 


Indirect land use change even worse
Indirect land use change: even worse

CO2 payback time of total soybean mix due to expansion (Brazil):

Direct (35 years) + Indirect (211 years) = 246 years

Adapted from:

Lapola D M et al. PNAS 2010;107:3388-3393


Wi s concern widespread use peat soils
WI’s concern: widespread use peat soils

Energy yield and emission factor of typical biomass fuel crops on peatsoil, compared to fossil fuels.

Couwenberg 2007. IMCG-newsletter 2007-3 p.12-15


Case eu aims to meet ghg reduction
Case: EU aims to meet GHG reduction

  • Bio-energy: main climate strategy EU

  • Effort to prevent extremes in land use emissions

    - Hope REDD will solve parts of it…- ILUC?


Environmental implications 2020
Environmental implications 2020

Studies commissioned by EU DG-Trade:

  • Large imports from non-Annex 1 in 202050% ethanol, 41% diesel

    When also accounting ILUC:

  • Target higher than 5,6%: no GHG benefits

  • No fuel meets 50% reduction target

  • with ILUC 81-167% worse than fossil fuels 56 mln tonnes extra CO2 (IEEP 2010)


Eu just small at global scale
EU- just small at global scale

IEA BLUE Map Scenario, 50% reduction energy-related CO2 emissions from 2005


Conclusions
Conclusions

  • Biofuel expansion largely result of climate policies

  • Only limited expansion possible without negative environmental impacts

  • Not accounting LULUCF is disastrous.


What to do option 1
What to do: option 1

  • Biofuel combustion remains zero emission

  • But all (land-use) emissions accounted

  • also non annex I; also LUC and ILUC

    Negative sides:

  • Complicated

  • Complete new methodology; why only for biofuels?


What to do option 2
What to do: Option 2

  • Biofuel combustion accounted; like fossil

  • Sequestration in feed stocks accounted (thus rewarded).

  • In the longer term, maybe the best system

    Negative side:

  • Demands global accounting system

  • Why only for biofuels?


Options 3
Options 3

  • No accounting combustion of bio-energy

  • Mandatory LULUCF accounting (all activities)

  • Standards to ban biofuels with huge LUC, ILUC and other emissions in non-Annex 1

  • Possibly best for this moment…

    Negative side:

  • Non-Annex 1 not accounted, only extremes excluded

  • Incentive to import from non-Annex 1

  • Dependent on supply-chain certification system


Thank you

Alex Kaat

Wetlands International

[email protected]


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