Trade-offs of Different Land and Bioenergy Policies on the Path to Achieving Climate Targets

TitleTrade-offs of Different Land and Bioenergy Policies on the Path to Achieving Climate Targets
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
JournalClimatic Change
Abstract / Summary

Many papers have shown that bioenergy and land-use are potentially important elements in a strategy to limit anthropogenic climate change. But, significant expansion of bioenergy production can have a large terrestrial footprint. In this paper, we test the implications for land use, the global energy system, emissions and mitigation costs of meeting a specific climate target, using a single fossil fuel and industrial sector policy instrument, but with five alternative bioenergy and land-use policy architectures. These scenarios are illustrative in nature, and designed to explore trade-offs. We find that the policies we examined have differing effects on the different segments of the economy. Comprehensive land policies can reduce land-use change emissions, increasing allowable emissions in the energy system, but have implications for the cost of food. Bioenergy penalties and constraints, on the other hand, have little effect on food prices, but result in less bioenergy and thus can increase mitigation costs and energy prices.

DOI10.1007/s10584-013-0897-y
Funding Program: 
Journal: Climatic Change
Year of Publication: 2013
Publication Date: 10/2013

Many papers have shown that bioenergy and land-use are potentially important elements in a strategy to limit anthropogenic climate change. But, significant expansion of bioenergy production can have a large terrestrial footprint. In this paper, we test the implications for land use, the global energy system, emissions and mitigation costs of meeting a specific climate target, using a single fossil fuel and industrial sector policy instrument, but with five alternative bioenergy and land-use policy architectures. These scenarios are illustrative in nature, and designed to explore trade-offs. We find that the policies we examined have differing effects on the different segments of the economy. Comprehensive land policies can reduce land-use change emissions, increasing allowable emissions in the energy system, but have implications for the cost of food. Bioenergy penalties and constraints, on the other hand, have little effect on food prices, but result in less bioenergy and thus can increase mitigation costs and energy prices.

DOI: 10.1007/s10584-013-0897-y
Citation:
Calvin, K, M Wise, P Kyle, P Patel, L Clarke, and J Edmonds.  2013.  "Trade-offs of Different Land and Bioenergy Policies on the Path to Achieving Climate Targets."  Climatic Change.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-013-0897-y.