Life cycle assessment of Jatropha biodiesel as transportation fuel in rural India
Since 2003 India has been actively promoting the cultivation of Jatropha on unproductive and degraded lands (wastelands) for the production of biodiesel suitable as transportation fuel. In this paper the life cycle energy balance, global warming potential, acidification potential, eutrophication potential and land use impact on ecosystem quality is evaluated for a small scale, low-input Jatropha biodiesel system established on wasteland in rural India. In addition to the life cycle assessment of the case at hand, the environmental performance of the same system expanded with a biogas installation digesting seed cake was quantified. The environmental impacts were compared to the life cycle impacts of a fossil fuel reference system delivering the same amount of products and functions as the Jatropha biodiesel system under research. The results show that the production and use of Jatropha biodiesel triggers an 82% decrease in non-renewable energy requirement (Net Energy Ratio, NERÂ =Â 1.85) and a 55% reduction in global warming potential (GWP) compared to the reference fossil-fuel based system. However, there is an increase in acidification (49%) and eutrophication (430%) from the Jatropha system relative to the reference case. Although adding biogas production to the system boosts the energy efficiency of the system (NERÂ =Â 3.40), the GWP reduction would not increase (51%) due to additional CH4 emissions. For the land use impact, Jatropha improved the structural ecosystem quality when planted on wasteland, but reduced the functional ecosystem quality. Fertilizer application (mainly N) is an important contributor to most negative impact categories. Optimizing fertilization, agronomic practices and genetics are the major system improvement options.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 87 (2010)
Issue (Month): 12 (December)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/405891/description#description|
|Order Information:|| Postal: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/405891/bibliographic|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:appene:v:87:y:2010:i:12:p:3652-3660. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.