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Sustainable biomass for raw materials, energy and GHG mitigation
Convener: Viktor J. Bruckman  | Co-Conveners: Vanessa Parravicini , Chris Rella 
 / Attendance Thu, 21 Apr, 17:30–19:00

Unlike the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions caused by fossil fuel burning, which can be measured via fuel consumption statistics, the GHG impact of biomass utilization is poorly understood, due to the underlying complexity of the processes involved. In this session, we welcome contributions on the production and utilization of sustainable biomass for industrial raw materials, energy production, and carbon sequestration, including abstracts that focus on quantifying the net end-to-end GHG impact of these biomass utilization activities. Renewable resources such as biomass represent an important tool in reducing GHG emissions, but understanding the net GHG impact of the production and utilization of the biomass is crucial to making informed, metrics-based policy decisions and to incentivize changes in transportation and land use patterns. New approaches of thermal utilization of biomass (e.g. torrefacation, pyrolysis) are emerging and have the potential to further decrease GHG emissions via BECCS (Bio Energy and Carbon Capture and Storage). Consequently, this session aims at presenting potential solutions for expanding biomass to active GHG sequestration, and at quantifying the potential GHG impacts of global land use trends, driven by continued increases in population, urban land use, and resource consumption.

This session is open to contributions assessing aspects of biomass production and utilization at different scales (e.g. local-global, national forest inventories), dealing with potential consequences of land-use change on soils (e.g. nutrient depletion, acidification, carbon cycle), water (e.g. pollution, altering catchment water balances) and atmosphere (e.g. CO2 mitigation potentials, VOC’s pollution of fast growing species, impact of urban biosphere on overall urban GHG emissions). Abstracts that consider not only the impact of carbon dioxide, but other long-lived GHGs, such as methane, nitrous oxide, and black carbon, are welcome. Contributions on GHG emissions and sequestration, from theoretical concepts, models or the development of methods as well as interdisciplinary and holistic approaches, abstracts proposing alternative use of biomass, and contributions to novel approaches in GHG measuring/quantification are highly welcome.

This session is co-organized with the IUFRO Task-Force “Sustainable Forest Biomass Network (SFBN)” and working group 7.01.03, Impacts of air pollution and climate change on forest ecosystems – Atmospheric deposition, soils and nutrient cycles.