Brazil has plans to increase its production of biofuels over the next ten years. But, although Brazilian sugarcane is currently one of the best raw materials for producing biofuels with low greenhouse-gas emissions, there are concerns that land-use changes caused by expanding biofuel plantations could mar this good performance.
With that in mind, a team from Germany and Kenya has projected land-use changes in Brazil to 2020. Its results indicate that the biofuel and cattle ranching sectors should work together to ensure that the increased growth of biofuels does not lead to destruction of rainforest for rangelands. One way to achieve this could be by increasing livestock density.
“Indirect land-use change could considerably compromise the greenhouse-gas savings from growing biofuels, mainly by pushing rangeland frontier into the Amazon forest and Brazilian Cerrado savanna,” write the researchers in PNAS.
Read more (environmental research web)