Biomass and Bioenergy | VOL. 35

Energy and greenhouse gas emission effects of corn and cellulosic ethanol with technology improvements and land use changes

Publication Date May 1, 2011


Abstract Use of ethanol as a transportation fuel in the United States has grown from 76 dam 3 in 1980 to over 40.1 hm 3 in 2009 — and virtually all of it has been produced from corn. It has been debated whether using corn ethanol results in any energy and greenhouse gas benefits. This issue has been especially critical in the past several years, when indirect effects, such as indirect land use changes, associated with U.S. corn ethanol production are considered in evaluation. In the past three years, modeling of direct and indirect land use changes related to the production of corn ethanol has advanced significantly. Meanwhile, technology improvements in key stages of the ethanol life cycle (such as corn farming and ethanol production) have been made. With updated simulation results of direct and indirect land use changes and observed technology improvements in the past several years, we conducted a life-cycle analysis of ethanol and show that at present and in the near future, using corn ethanol reduces greenhouse gas emission by more than 20%, relative to those of petroleum gasoline. On the other hand, second-generation ethanol could achieve much higher reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. In a broader sense, sound evaluation of U.S. biofuel policies should account for both unanticipated consequences and technology potentials. We maintain that the usefulness of such evaluations is to provide insight into how to prevent unanticipated consequences and how to promote efficient technologies with policy intervention.

Powered ByUnsilo

Corn Ethanol
Corn Ethanol Production
Indirect Land Use
Indirect Land
Land Use
Direct Land Use
Reductions In Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Greenhouse Gas Benefits
Greenhouse Gas Emission
Technology Improvements

Introducing Weekly Round-ups!Beta

Powered by R DiscoveryR Discovery

Round-ups are the summaries of handpicked papers around trending topics published every week. These would enable you to scan through a collection of papers and decide if the paper is relevant to you before actually investing time into reading it.

Climate change Research Articles published between May 09, 2022 to May 15, 2022

R DiscoveryMay 16, 2022
R DiscoveryArticles Included:  2

Introduction: Climate change is a pervasive threat to global biodiversity and is expected to have profound effects on the resilience and abundance of ...

Read More

Coronavirus Pandemic

You can also read COVID related content on R COVID-19

R ProductsCOVID-19


Creating the world’s largest AI-driven & human-curated collection of research, news, expert recommendations and educational resources on COVID-19

COVID-19 Dashboard