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  1. Perspectives on the timing of benefits of forest-based bioenergy Annette Cowie, Goran Berndes, Tat Smith Rural Climate Solutions As of September 2001 Page 1 ISO 9001 certified IEABioenergy Task38 www.ieabioenergy-task38.org

  2. Costs of climate change In 2010, climate change cost: • 700 billion USD • 0.9% global GDP • 400,000 deaths per year – 90% children Climate change + Carbon economy • costs 1.2 trillion USD • kills 4.975 million DARA, 2012

  3. Too late to avoid 2° C ? • 2° C: target of the Copenhagen Accord to avoid catastrophic outcomes • Already increased by 1 degree • At least 0.5 degree unavoidable – in train • Without immediate and drastic action we cannot meet the 2° C target

  4. Global Energy Assessment 2012

  5. Negative emissions options • Afforestation, soil carbon management • Enhanced weathering • Direct air capture • Ocean fertilisation • “BECCS” – Bioenergy+ Carbon Capture &Storage

  6. Atmosphere Bioenergy – “carbon neutral”

  7. Global Energy Assessment 2012

  8. Global Energy Assessment 2012

  9. Global Energy Assessment 2012

  10. Göran Berndes

  11. Göran Berndes

  12. Göran Berndes

  13. Göran Berndes

  14. “Carbon debt” papers • Holtsmark, B. (2012). “Harvesting in boreal forests and the biofuel carbon debt.” Climatic Change 112(2): 415-428. • Hudiburg, T. W., Law B. E., Wirth C. and Luyssaert S. (2011). “Regional carbon dioxide implications of forest bioenergy production.” Nature Clim. Change 1(8): 419-42 • LamersP., Junginger M., (2013) " The ‘debt’ is in the detail: a synthesis of recent temporal forest carbon analyses on woody biomass for energy." Biofuels, Bioproducts, and Biorefining, in press. • McKechnie, J., S. Colombo, J. Chen, W. Mabee and H. L. MacLean (2011). “Forest bioenergy or forest carbon? Assessing trade-offs in greenhouse gas mitigation with wood-based fuels.” Environmental Science and Technology 45(2): 789-795. • Schulze, E.-D., C. Körner, B. E. Law, H. Haberl and S. Luyssaert (2012). “Large-scale bioenergy from additional harvest of forest biomass is neither sustainable nor greenhouse gas neutral.” GCB Bioenergy: 4(6): 611-616. • Searchinger, T et al(2009). “Fixing a critical climate accounting error.” Science 326(5952): 527-528. • Walker, T et al (2010). Massachussets Biomass Sustainability and Carbon Policy Study. Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences. • Zanchi, G., N. Pena and D. N. Bird (2010). The upfront carbon debt of bioenergy. Graz, Austria, Joanneum Research.

  15. IEA Bioenergy Task 38 • “Climate change effects of biomass and bioenergy systems” • Participating countries: • Australia, Brazil, Finland, France, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, USA

  16. Objectives of Task 38 • Develop, demonstrate and promote standard methodology for GHG balances • Increase understanding of GHG outcomes of bioenergy and carbon sequestration • Emphasise overall atmospheric impact, whole life cycle • Promote international exchange of ideas, models and scientific results • Aid decision makers in selecting most effective mitigation options

  17. Timing statement published July 2013 ieabioenergy.com/iea-publications/ Annette Cowie, Göran Berndes, Tat Smith and others from Tasks 38, 40 and 43

  18. Who is asking?

  19. Life cycle perspective

  20. Consider carbon stock change • “direct land use change dLUC” • change in land use or management affects C in biomass and soil

  21. Indirect landuse change • Outside system boundary • Form of “leakage” • Off-site carbon stock change, methane, nitrous oxide emissions • logging • fire • drainage of peatlands

  22. Fritsche, 2009

  23. Task 38

  24. Reference energy system • Fossil energy source: average or marginal? • Conversion efficiency Displacement factor = efficiencybio /efficiencyrefx CO2ref/CO2bio • Nearly always <1

  25. Reference land use • Natural forest • Integrated food/feed/timber/biomass systems

  26. Spatial scale? F Cherubini NTNU

  27. Berndes et al 2011

  28. Göran Berndes

  29. Göran Berndes

  30. Different perspectives • Stand vs landscape • Individual operator vs national government • Natural system vs managed system • Clock starts at planting vs at harvest • Short term vs long term • Specific stage vs whole life cycle • Biomass only vs integrated forest product system • Average vs marginal reference system • Debt vs investment

  31. JRC report http://iet.jrc.ec.europa.eu/bf-ca/sites/bf-ca/files/files/documents/eur25354en_online-final.pdf

  32. JRCreport • Negative conclusion for forest-based bioenergy – too uncertain therefore too risky • Ignores forest management impacts on forest growth • Accepts as reference “natural carbon carrying capacity” without human intervention • Focus on short term “carbon neutrality”

  33. IEA Bioenergy Statement: • Policymakers need to consider the big picture - the whole life cycle, the long term, human influences • Biomass for energy is usually one of several products from a managed forest • Forest C stocks fluctuate (at the stand level) over time and space- a forest is a mosaic of age classes • Forest C stock should be considered across the estate • A function of management and natural factors • May be increasing or decreasing or stable

  34. IEA Bioenergy Statement: • If C stock decreases (relative to “without bioenergy” scenario), this is an emission that must be compensated through avoiding fossil fuels, before bioenergy gives net mitigation benefit • Loss in C stock can be minimised by investment in intensive forest management • GHG cost is an investment in establishing renewable energy system