Biofuels can provide 30 percent of US transport fuel by 2037: researchers

July 6, 2012 |

In California, writing in The Scientist, Heather Youngs and Chris Somerville of the Energy Biosciences Institute of the University of California, Berkeley, projected that biofuels can be scaled sufficiently to provide 30 percent of US transport fuels by 2037.

“Approximately 18 percent of the Earth’s terrestrial surface, including much of the 600 million hectares of land that has fallen out of agricultural production, is semiarid and prone to drought. Plants that can be grown on such land could dramatically increase biofuel crop production without competing for land used for food crops,” the scientistswrite, and note that “The world’s population is expected to grow by approximately 50 percent before stabilizing later this century.

“The pressures to expand food and energy production while simultaneously reducing our carbon emissions and preserving ecosystem services is expected to create many conflicts concerning land use and agricultural practices.”

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