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Book
1 online resource (40 p. ) : digital, PDF file.
This document summarizes the recommendations and evaluations provided by an independent external panel of experts at the 2011 U.S. Department of Energy Biomass Program’s Sustainability Platform Review meeting.
Book
1 online resource (p. 300-301 ): digital, PDF file.
The presentation provides an overview of the Biodiesel Cellulosic Ethanol Research Project (Hendry County Sustainable Biofuels Center). It summarizes the project history, timeline, budget, partners, objectives, goals, future plans and in closer detail reviews the used approaches and technical accomplishments. The main project goals were (1) developing strategies and tools that assist in the creation of economically and environmentally sustainable bioenergy industries within ecologically-sensitive regions such as South Florida and, in particular, the greater Everglades, (2) using these bioenergy strategies and tools in evolving the existing agricultural, urban, and ecological sectors towards more sustainable structures and practices and (3) using bioenergy as a focal point in the larger effort to mitigate climate change and sea level rise, realities with particularly catastrophic consequences for South Florida. The project started on Oct 1, 2010 and ended on Feb 28, 2013. It yearly average budget was $369,770, with the Dept. of Energy annual cost share of $317,167. The main project partners were Hendry County, University of Florida - Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Intelligentsia International, Inc., Edison State College and University of South Florida. Used approaches, main accomplishments and results in the categories of (1) technical research, (2) education and (3) business development are presented in detail. The project uniqueness is mainly related to the use of system approaches and integrating several systems analyses. Relevance of the project applicable to sustainability of bioenergy, food production, & restoration is explained, critical success factors are challenges are outlined and future work drafted. Finally, the main publications and presentations catalogue list is presented.
Book
1 online resource (642 p.) : digital, PDF file.
With the goal of understanding environmental effects of a growing bioeconomy, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), national laboratories, and U.S. Forest Service research laboratories, together with academic and industry collaborators, undertook a study to estimate environmental effects of potential biomass production scenarios in the United States, with an emphasis on agricultural and forest biomass. Potential effects investigated include changes in soil organic carbon (SOC), greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, water quality and quantity, air emissions, and biodiversity. Effects of altered land-management regimes were analyzed based on select county-level biomass-production scenarios for 2017 and 2040 taken from the 2016 Billion-Ton Report: Advancing Domestic Resources for a Thriving Bioeconomy (BT16), volume 1, which assumes that the land bases for agricultural and forestry would not change over time. The scenarios reflect constraints on biomass supply (e.g., excluded areas; implementation of management practices; and consideration of food, feed, forage, and fiber demands and exports) that intend to address sustainability concerns. Nonetheless, both beneficial and adverse environmental effects might be expected. To characterize these potential effects, this research sought to estimate where and under what modeled scenarios or conditions positive and negative environmental effects could occur nationwide. The report also includes a discussion of land-use change (LUC) (i.e., land management change) assumptions associated with the scenario transitions (but not including analysis of indirect LUC [ILUC]), analyses of climate sensitivity of feedstock productivity under a set of potential scenarios, and a qualitative environmental effects analysis of algae production under carbon dioxide (CO<sub>2</sub>) co-location scenarios. Because BT16 biomass supplies are simulated independent of a defined end use, most analyses do not include benefits from displacing fossil fuels or other products, with the exception of including a few illustrative cases on potential reductions in GHG emissions and fossil energy consumption associated with using biomass supplies for fuel, power, heat, and chemicals. Most analyses in volume 2 show potential for a substantial increase in biomass production with minimal or negligible environmental effects under the biomass supply constraints assumed in BT16. Although corn ethanol has been shown to achieve GHG emissions improvements over fossil fuels, cellulosic biomass shows further improvements in certain environmental indicators covered in this report. The harvest of agricultural and forestry residues generally shows the smallest contributions to changes in certain environmental indicators investigated. The scenarios show national-level net SOC gains. When expanding the system boundary in illustrative cases that consider biomass end use, reductions in GHG emissions are estimated for scenarios in which biomass—rather than oil, coal, and natural gas—is used to produce fuel, power, heat, and chemicals. Analyses of water quality reveal that there could be tradeoffs between biomass productivity and some water quality indicators, but better outcomes for both biomass productivity and water quality can be achieved with selected conservation practices. Biodiversity analyses show possible habitat benefits to some species, with other species showing potential adverse effects that may require additional safeguards. Increasing productivity of algae can reduce GHG emissions and water consumption associated with producing algal biomass, though the effects of water consumption are likely of greater concern in some regions than in others. Moreover, the effects of climate change on potential biomass production show gains and losses in yield among feedstocks across the continental United States. Key research gaps and priorities include actions that can enhance benefits and reduce potential for negative effects of increased biomass...
Book
1 online resource (642 p.) : digital, PDF file.
On behalf of all the authors and contributors, it is a great privilege to present the 2016 Billion-Ton Report (BT16), volume 2: Environmental Sustainability Effects of Select Scenarios from volume 1. This report represents the culmination of several years of collaborative effort among national laboratories, government agencies, academic institutions, and industry. BT16 was developed to support the U.S. Department of Energy’s efforts towards national goals of energy security and associated quality of life.
Book
1 online resource (2) : digital, PDF file.
Today, the United States is faced with a national imperative to address the enormous challenge presented by climate change and to seize upon the multi-trillion dollar economic opportunity that a transition to a global clean energy economy will provide.
Book
1 online resource (4) : digital, PDF file.
EERE’s vision is a strong and prosperous America that is powered by clean, affordable, and secure energy. In the context of this vision, EERE’s mission is to create and sustain American leadership in the transition to a global clean energy economy. This mission requires that EERE perform its work at the intersection of national energy, economic, and environmental systems, as well as across industry and institutional organizations.
Book
1 online resource (34 ) : digital, PDF file.
The 2016-2020 Strategic Plan and Implementing Framework from the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) is the blueprint for launching the nation’s leadership in the global clean energy economy. This document will guide the organization to build on decades of progress in powering our nation from clean, affordable and secure energy.
Book
1 online resource (6 ) : digital, PDF file.
This document highlights the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's investments and impacts in the state of Alaska.
Book
1 online resource (6 pp. ) : digital, PDF file.
This document highlights the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy's investments and impacts in the state of Alaska.
Book
1 online resource (40 p. ) : digital, PDF file.
This report is based on the proceedings of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office’s Algal Biofuel Strategy Workshop on March 26–27, 2014, in Charleston, South Carolina. The workshop objective was to convene stakeholders to engage in discussion on strategies over the next 5 to 10 years to achieve affordable, scalable, and sustainable algal biofuels.
Book
1 online resource.
The Alliance for Sustainable Colorado (The Alliance) is a nonprofit organization aiming to transform sustainability from vision to reality. Part of its mission is to change the operating paradigms of commercial building design to make them more sustainable. Toward that end The Alliance uses its headquarters, The Alliance Center at 1536 Wynkoop Street in Denver, as a living laboratory, conductingpilot studies of innovative commercial-building-design solutions for using and generating energy.
Book
1 online resource (88 p.) : digital, PDF file.
The Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps report, published by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) provides an overview of the current state of alternative aviation fuels, based upon findings from recent peer-reviewed studies, scientific working groups, and BETO stakeholder input provided during the Alternative Aviation Fuel Workshop.
Book
1 online resource.
The inherent variability in corn stover productivity due to variations in soils and crop management practices might contribute to a variation in corn stover-based bioethanol sustainability. This study was carried out to examine how changes in soil types and crop management options would affect corn stover yield (CSY) and the sustainability of the stover-based ethanol production in the Delta region of Mississippi. Based on potential acreage and geographical representation, three locations were selected. Using CERES-Maize model, stover yields were simulated for several scenarios of soils and crop management options. Based on 'net energy value (NEV)' computed from CSYs, a sustainability indicator for stover-based bioethanol production was established. The effects of soils and crop management options on CSY and NEV were determined using ANOVA tests and regression analyses. Both CSY and NEV were significantly different across sandy loam, silt loam, and silty clay loam soils and also across high-, mid-, and low-yielding cultivars. With an increase in irrigation level, both CSY and NEV increased initially and decreased after reaching a peak. A third-degree polynomial relationship was found between planting date and CSY and NEV each. By moving from the lowest to the highest production scenario, values of CSY and NEV could be increased by 86 to 553%, depending on location and weather condition. The effects of variations in soils and crop management options on NEV were the same as on CSY. The NEV was positive for all scenarios, indicating that corn stover-based ethanol production system in the Delta region is sustainable.
Book
1 online resource (3.9 MB ): digital, PDF file.
NREL's Sustainability Program is responsible for upholding all executive orders, federal regulations, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) orders, and goals related to sustainable and resilient facility operations. But NREL continues to expand sustainable practices above and beyond the laboratory's regulations and requirements to ensure that the laboratory fulfills its mission into the future, leaves the smallest possible legacy footprint, and models sustainable operations and behaviors on national, regional, and local levels. The report, per the GRI reporting format, elaborates on multi-year goals relative to executive orders, achievements, and challenges; and success stories provide specific examples. A section called 'NREL's Resiliency is Taking Many Forms' provides insight into how NREL is drawing on its deep knowledge of renewable energy and energy efficiency to help mitigate or avoid climate change impacts.
Book
p. 117-127 : digital, PDF file.
In order to aid in transition towards operations that promote sustainability goals, researchers and stakeholders use sustainability assessments. Although assessments take various forms, many utilize diverse sets of indicators that can number anywhere from two to over 2000. Indices, composite indicators, or aggregate values are used to simplify high dimensional and complex data sets and to clarify assessment results. Although the choice of aggregation function is a key component in the development of the assessment, there are few examples to be found in literature to guide appropriate aggregation function selection. This paper develops a connection between the mathematical study of aggregation functions and sustainability assessment in order to aid in providing criteria for aggregation function selection. Relevant mathematical properties of aggregation functions are presented and interpreted. Lastly, we provide cases of these properties and their relation to previous sustainability assessment research. Examples show that mathematical aggregation properties can be used to address the topics of compensatory behavior and weak versus strong sustainability, aggregation of data under varying units of measurements, multiple site multiple indicator aggregation, and the determination of error bounds in aggregate output for normalized and non-normalized indicator measures.
Book
1 online resource (9 pp. ) : digital, PDF file.
The subject of sustainable energy development has been widely discussed and debated in recent years. However, despite widespread interest, progress toward this goal has been limited. This paper will build on current thinking related to sustainable development, energy forecasting, and complexity theory and show how past roadmapping methodologies fall short. While proposing ways of thinking about our responses to global changes, we consider how we can create and discover the pathways through those unpredictable changes toward high global renewables penetration.
Book
9.38 MB, 192 pages : digital, PDF file.
Based on a widely cited September, 1999 report by the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, nearly 11 million tons of asphalt roofing shingle wastes are produced in the United States each year. Recent data suggests that the total is made up of about 9.4 million tons from roofing tear-offs and about 1.6 million tons from manufacturing scrap. Developing beneficial uses for these materials would conserve natural resources, promote protection of the environment and strengthen the economy. This project explored the feasibility of using chipped asphalt shingle materials in cement manufacturing kilns and circulating fluidized bed (CFB) boilers. A method of enhancing the value of chipped shingle materials for use as fuel by removing certain fractions for use as substitute raw materials for the manufacture of new shingles was also explored. Procedures were developed to prevent asbestos containing materials from being processed at the chipping facilities, and the frequency of the occurrence of asbestos in residential roofing tear-off materials was evaluated. The economic feasibility of each potential use was evaluated based on experience gained during the project and on a review of the well established use of shingle materials in hot mix asphalt. This project demonstrated that chipped asphalt shingle materials can be suitable for use as fuel in circulating fluidized boilers and cement kilns. More experience would be necessary to determine the full benefits that could be derived and to discover long term effects, but no technical barriers to full scale commercial use of chipped asphalt shingle materials in these applications were discovered. While the technical feasibility of various options was demonstrated, only the use of asphalt shingle materials in hot mix asphalt applications is currently viable economically.
Book
1 online resource (Article No. e01206 ) : digital, PDF file.
This paper connects the science of sustainability theory with applied aspects of sustainability deployment. A suite of 35 sustainability indicators spanning six environmental, three economic, and three social categories has been proposed for comparing the sustainability of bioenergy production systems across different feedstock types and locations. A recent demonstration-scale switchgrass-to-ethanol production system located in East Tennessee is used to assess the availability of sustainability indicator data and associated measurements for the feedstock production and logistics portions of the biofuel supply chain. Knowledge pertaining to the available indicators is distributed within a hierarchical decision tree framework to generate an assessment of the overall sustainability of this no-till switchgrass production system relative to two alternative business-as-usual scenarios of unmanaged pasture and tilled corn production. The relative contributions of the social, economic and environmental information are determined for the overall trajectory of this bioenergy system s sustainability under each scenario. Within this East Tennessee context, switchgrass production shows potential for improving environmental and social sustainability trajectories without adverse economic impacts, thereby leading to potential for overall enhancement in sustainability within this local agricultural system. Given the early stages of cellulosic ethanol production, it is currently difficult to determine quantitative values for all 35 sustainability indicators across the entire biofuel supply chain. This case study demonstrates that integration of qualitative sustainability indicator ratings may increase holistic understanding of a bioenergy system in the absence of complete information.
Book
2.7 MB : digital, PDF file.
This presentation addresses the recognition that the sustainability of the bioeconomy requires strong interlinkages between existing and developing industries in agriculture (terrestrial and aquatic); forestry; waste and residue management in rural, industrial, and urban environments; the chemicals and biotechnology industry in terms of production of substitutes or better performing materials and chemicals; and in the fuels and power sectors. The transition to a low-carbon intensity economy requires the integration of systems and uses circular economy concepts to increase resource use efficiency and security for all biomass and other resources used as well. It requires innovation along the whole supply chains as well as research, development, and demonstration of the integrated systems with strong partnerships from the landscapes and watersheds where biomass is planted all the way to the many applications.
Book
1 online resource (0:15:00 ) : digital, PDF file.
Bioenergy: America's Energy Future is a short documentary film showcasing examples of bioenergy innovations across the biomass supply chain and the United States. The film highlights a few stories of individuals and companies who are passionate about achieving the promise of biofuels and addressing the challenges of developing a thriving bioeconomy. This outreach product supports media initiatives to expand the public's understanding of the bioenergy industry and sustainable transportation and was developed by the U.S. Department of Energy Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO), Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Green Focus Films, and BCS, Incorporated.

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