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[en] Decentralized power generation can play a significant role in contributing to renewable energy (RE) supply. Accordingly, regions can be important players in the transformation of the energy system. However, only scarce spatial capacities are available for a sustainable RE generation. Knowledge gaps exist concerning data and methods for integrating RE assessment and environmental planning methods. This paper presents a methodology for the integrated assessment of different RE potentials and their land requirements. The potential is contrasted with the actual availability of land for RE-generation considering environmental restrictions. An application in the Hanover region demonstrates that using energy capacity maps supports using the most efficient mixture in RE generation. Generally, a combination of wind and solar energies produces the highest energy yield per ha. Furthermore, relying primarily on generalized environmental restrictions for defining exclusion areas can be only a first step: On the one hand the assessment is probably underrating the potential for environmentally sound RE generation due to the undifferentiated exclusion of large areas of a certain protective status. On the other hand, some energy sources, in particular energy crops for bioenergy generation, are malpositioned due to missing spatially explicit information about ecosystem sensitivities and a lack of regulative possibilities. Further research is needed to explore synergistic combinations of energy potentials and their environmentally sound spatial allocation in more detail. - Highlights: • We combine models of RE potentials with technical and environmental restrictions. • We explore the resulting “decision-spaces” for regional RE development. • “Decision-spaces” are small and need to be developed carefully to avoid trade-offs. • Planning needs more differentiated analyses to test RE allocation-scenarios. • We recommend detailed analyses on (cumulative) impacts of (multifunctional) RE use
[en] With a vast area of marginal land, the Loess Plateau of China is a promising region for large-scale production of second-generation energy crops. However, it remains unknown whether such production is sustainable in the long run, especially under climate change. Using a regional climate change model, PRECIS, we analyzed the impact of climate change on Miscanthus production in the Loess Plateau. Under three emission scenarios, A2, B2, and A1B, both the average yield and total area capable of supporting Miscanthus production would increase continuously in the future period (2011–2099). As a result, the total yield potential in the region would increase by about 20% in this future period from the baseline period (1961–1990). This was explained primarily by predicted increases in temperature and precipitation across the Loess Plateau, which improved the yield of the perennial C4 plants relying exclusively on rainfed production. The areas that are currently too dry or too cold to support Miscanthus production could be turned into energy crop fields, especially along the arid–semiarid transition zone. Thus the Loess Plateau would become increasingly desirable for growing second-generation energy crops in this century, which could in turn contribute to soil improvement and ecological restoration of the region. (letter)
[en] The UK has legally binding renewable energy and greenhouse gas targets. Energy from biomass is anticipated to make major contributions to these. However there are concerns about the availability and sustainability of biomass for the bioenergy sector. A Biomass Resource Model has been developed that reflects the key biomass supply-chain dynamics and interactions determining resource availability, taking into account climate, food, land and other constraints. The model has been applied to the UK, developing four biomass resource scenarios to analyse resource availability and energy generation potential within different contexts. The model shows that indigenous biomass resources and energy crops could service up to 44% of UK energy demand by 2050 without impacting food systems. The scenarios show, residues from agriculture, forestry and industry provide the most robust resource, potentially providing up to 6.5% of primary energy demand by 2050. Waste resources are found to potentially provide up to 15.4% and specifically grown biomass and energy crops up to 22% of demand. The UK is therefore projected to have significant indigenous biomass resources to meet its targets. However the dominant biomass resource opportunities identified in the paper are not consistent with current UK bioenergy strategies, risking biomass deficit despite resource abundance. - Highlights: • Biomass Resource Model and Scenarios reflect biomass supply-chain dynamics to 2050. • High potential availability of biomass and energy crops without food systems impacts. • UK Indigenous biomass resource could service up to 44% of UK energy demand by 2050. • Robust residue resource from ongoing activities and large potential waste resource. • Indigenous resource abundance and the UK’s path towards increased resource deficit
[en] Present article is devoted to zinc comprising coordination compounds as growth stimulants of cotton seeds. The influence of zinc coordination compounds with physiologically active ligands on germinative energy and seed germination of cotton was studied. The biogical activity and effectiveness of zinc comprising coordination compounds at application them for humidification of cotton seeds was studied as well.
[en] The idea of using less productive or “marginal land” for energy crops is promoted as a way to overcome the previous land use controversies faced by biofuels. It is argued that marginal land use would not compete with food production, is widely available and would incur fewer environmental impacts. This term is notoriously vague however, as are the details of how marginal land use for energy crops would work in practice. This paper explores definitions of the term “marginal land” in academic, consultancy, NGO, government and industry documents in the UK. It identifies three separate definitions of the term: land unsuitable for food production; ambiguous lower quality land; and economically marginal land. It probes these definitions further by exploring the technical, normative and political assumptions embedded within them. It finds that the first two definitions are normatively motivated: this land should be used to overcome controversies and the latter definition is predictive: this land is likely to be used. It is important that the different advantages, disadvantages and implications of the definitions are spelled out so definitions are not conflated to create unrealistic expectations about the role of marginal land in overcoming biofuels land use controversies. -- Highlights: •Qualitative methods were used to explore definitions of the term “marginal land”. •Three definitions were identified. •Two definitions focus on overcoming biomass land use controversies. •One definition predicts what land will be used for growing biomass. •Definitions contain problematic assumptions
[en] Integrated assessment models suggest that the large-scale deployment of bioenergy could contribute to ambitious climate change mitigation efforts. However, such a shift would intensify the global competition for land, with possible consequences for 1.5 billion smallholder livelihoods that these models do not consider. Maintaining and enhancing robust livelihoods upon bioenergy deployment is an equally important sustainability goal that warrants greater attention. The social implications of biofuel production are complex, varied and place-specific, difficult to model, operationalize and quantify. However, a rapidly developing body of social science literature is advancing the understanding of these interactions. In this letter we link human geography research on the interaction between biofuel crops and livelihoods in developing countries to integrated assessments on biofuels. We review case-study research focused on first-generation biofuel crops to demonstrate that food, income, land and other assets such as health are key livelihood dimensions that can be impacted by such crops and we highlight how place-specific and global dynamics influence both aggregate and distributional outcomes across these livelihood dimensions. We argue that place-specific production models and land tenure regimes mediate livelihood outcomes, which are also in turn affected by global and regional markets and their resulting equilibrium dynamics. The place-specific perspective suggests that distributional consequences are a crucial complement to aggregate outcomes; this has not been given enough weight in comprehensive assessments to date. By narrowing the gap between place-specific case studies and global models, our discussion offers a route towards integrating livelihood and equity considerations into scenarios of future bioenergy deployment, thus contributing to a key challenge in sustainability sciences. (letter)
[en] Agricultural soils are a limited commodity and precious, even if in some regions of the planet, there are still scope for increasing the area under cultivation, availability and the conservation of fertile soils for the production the food is a priority issue on the agenda the big international agencies. There is a great international attention on how to develop a positive interconnection between climate energy targets and the production of food, avoiding possible conflicts and contributing to economic development and improvement general of the people's living conditions concerned.
[it]I suoli agricoli sono un bene limitato e prezioso e, anche se in alcune regioni del pianeta vi sono ancora margini per aumentare le superfici coltivate, la disponibilità e la conservazione di suoli fertili per la produzione di cibo è un problema prioritario nell’agenda delle grandi agenzie internazionali. Grande attenzione internazionale e' posta su come sviluppare positivamente l’interconnessione tra gli obiettivi energetico climatici e la produzione di cibo, evitando possibili conflitti e contribuendo allo sviluppo economico e al miglioramento generale delle condizioni di vita delle popolazioni interessate.
[en] Primary energy mix in Kosovo with 98 % consisting of lignite and only 2 % of water is far from portfolio of primary energy sources which could contribute to a sustainable and environmental friendly energy supply of the country. In order to improve the situation, government is supporting activities in favor of upgrading of electricity production capacities based on Renewable Energy Sources. Corresponding action plans and feed in tariffs are already in place. However, prior to any investment, one needs specific results on available potential. Current study provides results of the analysis of Kosovo potential for energy production by using of agricultural crops. Study is based on national statistics on available agricultural crops in Kosovo and provides results on biomass potential of crops, corresponding energy potential and an assessment of financial cost of energy produced.
[en] Heavy metals (HMs) contamination of soils is a major problem occurring worldwide. Utility of energy crops for biofuel feedstock production systems offers a feasible solution for a commercial exploitation of an arable land contaminated with HMs. Experiments involved field testing of Miscanthus x giganteus and Spartina pectinata cultivated on HMs-contaminated soil with standard NPK fertilizers and commercially available microbial inoculum. Biomass yield, water content, macronutrients (N, P, K, Mg, Ca), and heavy metal (Cd, Pb, Zn) concentrations in plant shoots were assessed at the end of the first and the second growing season. Independently of the applied fertilizers, Miscanthus x giganteus produced higher biomass yield while contrary results were obtained for S. pectinata. Higher HMs content in plants influenced the status of the mineral macronutrients in particular N and K. Occurrence of hasted senescence induced by drought in the second growing season caused reduction in the concentrations of all elements (except Pb), due to earlier rhizomes relocation.
[en] The EVA project compares nationwide energy crops and crop rotations on site-specific productivity. In addition to agronomic suitability for cultivation economic and environmental benefits and consequences are analyzed and evaluated. As part of sustainability assessment of the tested cultivation options LCAs are established. The model MiLA developed in the project uses empirical test data and site parameters to prepare the inventory balances. At selected locations different cultivation and fertilization regimes are examined comparatively. In the comparison of individual crops and crop rotation combinations cultivation of W.Triticale-GPS at the cereals favor location Dornburg causes the lowest productrelated GHG-emissions. Due to the efficient implementation of nitrogen and the substrate properties of maize is the cultivation despite high area-related emissions and N-expenses at a low level of emissions. Because of the intensity the two culture systems offer lower emissions savings potentials with high area efficiency. Extensification with perennial alfalfagrass at low nitrogen effort and adequate yield performance show low product-related emissions. Closing the nutrient cycles through a recirculation of digestates instead of using mineral fertilization has a climate-friendly effect. Adapted intensifies of processing or reduced tillage decrease diesel consumption and their related emissions.