Energy from biomass
Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Box 50005, 10405 Stockholm, Sweden
The potential future bioenergy contribution to the global energy supply is outlined. Severe constraints have to be applied since biomass is used for many different purposes. It is likely that biofuels from primary agricultural products may not increase much above the current 1% of all liquid motor fuels in order to secure food for people and cattle. Bioenergy from forestry should only be used whereever it is absolutely essential. Deforestation results in a net emission of CO2 to the atmosphere that is equal to that of the USA. Rather than to replace fossil fuels by forest bioenergy, deforestation must be halted. The management of the Swedish annual forest growth shows how a carbon sink can be developed in parallel with biomass for energy and industry. The most promising way of getting energy from biomass is to use the residues in forestry and agriculture. If this is properly done the current annual global bioenergy may double from its present value of 13,000 TWh in the next few decades.
© EDP Sciences, Springer-Verlag, 2009