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ARS Home » Plains Area » Mandan, North Dakota » Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #329137

Research Project: Sustainable Agricultural Systems for the Northern Great Plains

Location: Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory

Title: Biofuel feedstock: Challenges and opportunities

Author
item Cannayen, Igathinathane - North Dakota State University
item Sanderson, Matt

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/18/2016
Publication Date: 5/24/2018
Citation: Cannayen, I., Sanderson, M.A. 2018. Biofuel feedstock: Challenges and opportunities. In: Gude, V.G., editor. Green Chemistry for Sustainable Biofuel Production. New Jersey: Apple Academic Press. p.2:15-51.

Interpretive Summary: One of the guiding principles of green chemistry is the use of renewable material feedstocks and energy sources. Thus, the use of locally grown biofuel feedstocks falls in line with the green chemistry concept. Biomass derived from the agricultural and forestry activities represents a large potential inventory that can be processed through established pathways to produce biofuels as well as bioenergy and bioproducts with lower greenhouse gasses emissions compared with fossil fuels. The global interest in various applications of biofuel feedstocks stems from the transformation of the worldwide energy market and bioeconomy related development. In this chapter we briefly review some of the challenges and opportunities associated with the use of biomass feedstocks in green chemistry applications. We provide a broad overview of some global issues, which is followed by a closer examination of the use of perennial bioenergy crops for feedstock production, and then touch on specific issues related to processing of feedstocks, sustainability, and energy security.

Technical Abstract: Green chemistry is defined as a technology that efficiently utilizes (preferably renewable) raw materials, eliminates waste and avoids the use of toxic and/or hazardous solvents and reagents in the manufacture and application of chemical products. Biofuel feedstock refining processes, apart from producing biofuels, can generate high-value chemicals and products including plastics, polymers, and fibers among many other outputs similar to petroleum refining to various chemicals and products. Plant-derived renewable feedstocks have the potential to replace petroleum-derived products by yielding basic chemical building blocks that can be refined into products of similar or better properties. Producing bioenergy from locally grown biomass feedstocks could increase the energy security of communities and countries. Enhancing the productivity and efficiency of perennial bioenergy crops on lower quality lands along with fully exploiting the potential of co-products from biomass feedstocks can also contribute to solving food-fuel issues and ultimately contribute to both energy and food security.