Climate change, spurred by the increase of greenhouse gas (GHG) levels in the atmosphere is one of the key concerns of the 21st century.  As a result, interest in implementing bio-fuels, as a means of reducing GHG emissions, has risen significantly.  The 1st generation of bio-fuel development and utilisation has however taught us that this energy resource is not without limits and environmental consequences.  As such, the current development of 2nd, 3rd, and even 4th generation bio-fuels, should be complimented by intellectual study pertaining to their “real” benefits, or lack of, to the environment, along with their sustainability and integration potential.

Research Issues:

1. Overall: 
What are the; global, regional and local environmental consequences of the implementation of 2nd, 3rd and 4th generation bio-fuels?

2. Leading:
i. What are Bio-fuels global consequences?
ii. What are Bio-fuels regional and local consequences?
iii. How do individual bio-fuels compare with conventional fuels?
iv. How do individual bio-fuels compare with other alternative fuels?
v. Which bio-fuel-chain is most competitive with conventional fuels?
vi. Which bio-fuels, or can bio-fuels lead to sustainable mobility?

Work Packages:

  1. The first work package will encompass a literature review in which the goal is to produce a document highlighting knowledge gaps in bio-fuel-chain research and documentation.
  2. The second package will be a global environmental analysis, taking the form of a life-cycle analysis (LCA) report.
  3. The third package will be a regional/local environmental analysis in the form of an environmental-impact-analysis (EIA) study.
  4. The final package will be a general evaluation of bio-fuels; integration potential and sustainability, presenting a “larger picture” to the issue at hand.


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