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Relative Greenhouse Gas Abatement Cost Competitiveness of Biofuels in Germany

Department of Bioenergy, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research—UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany
Department of Bioenergy Systems, Deutsches Biomasseforschungszentrum gemeinnützige GmbH—DBFZ, Torgauer Straße 116, 04347 Leipzig, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2018, 11(3), 615;
Received: 17 December 2017 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 6 March 2018 / Published: 9 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Collection Bioenergy and Biofuel)
PDF [1007 KB, uploaded 9 March 2018]


Transport biofuels derived from biogenic material are used for substituting fossil fuels, thereby abating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Numerous competing conversion options exist to produce biofuels, with differing GHG emissions and costs. In this paper, the analysis and modeling of the long-term development of GHG abatement and relative GHG abatement cost competitiveness between crop-based biofuels in Germany are carried out. Presently dominant conventional biofuels and advanced liquid biofuels were found not to be competitive compared to the substantially higher yielding options available: sugar beet-based ethanol for the short- to medium-term least-cost option and substitute natural gas (SNG) for the medium to long term. The competitiveness of SNG was found to depend highly on the emissions development of the power mix. Silage maize-based biomethane was found competitive on a land area basis, but not on an energetic basis. Due to land limitations, as well as cost and GHG uncertainty, a stronger focus on the land use of crop-based biofuels should be laid out in policy. View Full-Text
Keywords: biofuels; greenhouse gas; GHG; abatement cost; modeling; competition biofuels; greenhouse gas; GHG; abatement cost; modeling; competition

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Millinger, M.; Meisel, K.; Budzinski, M.; Thrän, D. Relative Greenhouse Gas Abatement Cost Competitiveness of Biofuels in Germany. Energies 2018, 11, 615.

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