Study shows carbon debt on arid biofuels production difficult to pay back

A new study led by researchers from the University of Leuven shows that converting arid or semi-arid land to biofuel crops such as biodiesel could be counter-productive to environmental goals. The study says that 30 years would be required to repay the carbon debt from jatropha production—if the yield reached 9 to 14 tonnes of seeds per hectare per year—due to the carbon stocks on the converted land as well as emissions associated with tilling and land clearing.

Source: Journal of Arid Environments, August 21, 2012


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