Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.3390/su14042030
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) Bridging modeling and certification to evaluate low-ILUC-risk practices for biobased materials with a user-friendly tool
Author Balugani, E.; Sumfleth, B.; Majer, S.; Marazza, D.; Thrän, D.
Source Titel Sustainability
Year 2022
Volume 14
Issue 4
Page From art. 2030
Language englisch
Topic T5 Future Landscapes
Keywords ILUC; biobased; additionality; sustainability; certification; risk assessment; bioeconomy; producer level
Abstract Biobased materials may help to achieve a renewable, circular economy, but their impact could be similar to those of non-renewable materials. In the case of biofuels, the indirect land use change (ILUC) effects determine whether they can provide sustainability benefits compared to fossil fuels. ILUC modeling estimates have large uncertainties, making them difficult to include in a policy aiming at reducing environmental impacts. The Renewable Energy Directive (RED) II reduced ILUC estimate uncertainties by shifting the focus from ILUC environmental impacts to ILUC risk. Nevertheless, this does not take into account either certifiable additionality practices to reduce the ILUC risk for the production of biobased materials, or biobased materials other than biofuels. Here we propose a simple, user-friendly tool to bridge the gap between ILUC modeling and policy, by estimating the ILUC risk of biobased material production and to assess by how much different additionality practices can reduce that risk at different levels of the value chain. This was done by explicitly including the additionality practices in an ILUC model, simplifying the model to a spreadsheet tool that relates automatically the input provided by the user, which may be a producer or a policy maker, with a certain ILUC risk. We demonstrate the functioning of the tool on two examples: maize production in Iowa and in Romania. In Iowa, maize production is already very intensive, so the additionality practices proposed have little effect on its ILUC risk category, and the low-ILUC-risk-produced maize would amount to 0.03 t ha−1 year−1. In Romania there is ample margin for implementation of additionality practices, and thus a large potential to reduce the ILUC risk category of maize production, with low-ILUC-risk-produced maize amounting to 0.19 t ha−1 year −1.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Balugani, E., Sumfleth, B., Majer, S., Marazza, D., Thrän, D. (2022):
Bridging modeling and certification to evaluate low-ILUC-risk practices for biobased materials with a user-friendly tool
Sustainability 14 (4), art. 2030 10.3390/su14042030