BUS - yearbook 2006-2007
Despite recent criticisms, there is little doubt in the scientific and industrial community that biomass will play an important role in the transition towards a sustainable economy.
It will increasingly be a source of renewable energy, a raw material for the production of bio-chemicals and the basis for various construction materials. Inevitably, this leads to an increased demand for biomass that may eventually surpass the current “food and feed”-oriented biomass production by an order of magni-tude. Entirely new economic chains are developing, linking biomass production with final products on a truly global scale.
We are witnessing a built-up of competition between the established applications and the new, non-food applications of biomass with a steep increase in the prices of food as result. The fast de-velopment of new large scale applications like biofuels have created large imbalances in supply and demand.
Achieving a sustainable balance is major challenge. Many questions can be raised:
- What is the supply position for biomass?
- How can we prevent negative impacts on biodiversity?
- How can biomass be certified as a sustainable raw material?
- Which crops are suitable for the various food, feed and energy/material applications?
Can there be synergy between the fields?
- Can we genetically modify crops to better suit the applications?
- Is this ethically acceptable?
- Under which conditions can biomass be produced in an economically viable way?
- Will a steep increase in the demand for biomass in the “rich” countries cause over-exploitation in developing countries?
The Biomass Upstream Steering committee (BUS) has made an attempt in the past 4 years to develop insights in a broad spectrum of questions around the theme of supply and trade of bio-mass. With short studies (“quick-scans”), sometimes extended with a “follow-up”, many aspects have been studied and discussed. This 2nd yearbook is the compilation of these explorative studies over 2006 and 2007.
Through this yearbook we hope tot inform a broader audience about the activities carried out by the BUS with the aim of contributing to the sustainable use of biomass.
auteur(s): Mark Vonk (eds)
2008 | 185 pag.