Study Estimates Land Available for Biofuel Crops
ScienceDaily (Jan. 10, 2011) — Using detailed land analysis, Illinois researchers have found that biofuel crops cultivated on available land could produce up to half of the world's current fuel consumption -- without affecting food crops or pastureland.
Published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, the study led by civil and environmental engineering professor Ximing Cai identified land around the globe available to produce grass crops for biofuels, with minimal impact on agriculture or the environment.
Many studies on biofuel crop viability focus on biomass yield, or how productive a crop can be regionally. There has been relatively little research on land availability, one of the key constraints of biofuel development. Of special concern is whether the world could even produce enough biofuel to meet demand without compromising food production.
"The questions we're trying to address are, what kind of land could be used for biofuel crops? If we have land, where is it, and what is the current land cover?" Cai said.
Article continues: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110110130936.htm