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Life Cycle Assessment of Biofuels: Challenges and Opportunities

Life Cycle Assessment of Biofuels: Challenges and Opportunities
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Author(s): Majorie Moraa Nyasani (Machakos University, Kenya) and Victor Odhiambo Shikuku (Kaimosi Friends University, Kenya)
Copyright: 2023
Pages: 10
Source title: Biomass and Bioenergy Solutions for Climate Change Mitigation and Sustainability
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Ashok Kumar Rathoure (M/s Akone Services, India) and Shankar Mukundrao Khade (Ajeenkya D.Y. Patil University, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-6684-5269-1.ch002

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Abstract

To address energy security and climate-change concerns, substitutes are needed for petroleum-based transportation fuels. In addition to electricity and natural gas, biofuels are emerging as an important class of substitutes. The promotion of biofuels as energy is mainly driven by the perspective of oil depletion, concerns about energy security, and global warming. However, results published in the past few decades present conflicting pictures regarding the energy efficiency and sustainability of biofuels. To adequately address these real or apparent contradictions, a life cycle assessment (LCA) of biofuels is indispensable. “Life cycle” refers to all stages of a process: from the cradle, that is, raw material extraction through manufacturing, distribution, and use to ultimate disposal. This chapter discusses the benefits and limitations of biofuels from an LCA standpoint. The discrepancies and strengths in LCA of biofuels are critically analyzed and opportunities are highlighted. LCA of biofuels is shown to be critical to informing policy and for practical application.

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