CAREER: EXPLORING PLACE-BASED OPPORTUNITIES FOR BIOENERGY SUSTAINABILITY

Description

NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATIONGEOGRAPHY SPATIAL SCIENCES (GSS) PROGRAMABSTRACTThis Faculty Early-CAREER Development (CAREER) award will support research that will contribute new knowledge regarding how geospatial suitability, socioeconomic uncertainty, and life-cycle analysis-based environmental impacts can be used to develop place-based policy solutions for forest and agricultural bioenergy development in the midwestern and southern United States. The investigator will study the interactions among climate, soil, topography, bioenergy production conditions, stakeholder participation, and socioeconomic uncertainty to assess their impacts on the sustainability and development of bioenergy markets. The project will provide new perspectives for U.S. energy by assessing the sustainable production of forest and crop-based biomass dedicated to bioenergy production. Project results will enhance public awareness of bioenergy and will provide educational and outreach material about renewable energy resources and their conservation for elementary and middle school students. The educational agenda of this project will strengthen the talent pool in science, technology engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines through mentorship of undergraduate and graduate students, course development, research, and participation in K-12, public outreach, and environmental education programs.The investigator will perform a comprehensive geospatial analyses for bioenergy suitability by analyzing biophysical factors and by incorporating variables assessing human factors, such as stakeholder participation and socioeconomic uncertainty. A geospatial model will be developed to evaluate bioenergy suitability, while interviews and surveys will be used to assess stakeholder participation in bioenergy markets. Feedstock planting and harvest decisions made under uncertain market conditions will be integrated using a reservation price approach. This approach will ameliorate negative spatial factors associated with increased bioenergy crops production and will provide a learning environment to assess the effectiveness of place-based analyses as a policy instrument. The insights obtained from this innovative project will be adaptable to other bioenergy feedstocks and regions and will contribute towards development of longer-term strategies that benefit the agricultural sector and support rural economies and within the U.S. and globally.>
StatusActive
Effective start/end date1/08/1631/07/21

Funding

  • National Science Foundation (NSF): $50,000.00

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bioenergy
sustainability
stakeholder
student
life cycle analysis
rural economy
market
market conditions
environmental education
renewable resource
mathematics
energy resource
crop production
research and development
environmental impact
learning
topography
engineering
crop
participation