Global potential bioethanol production from wasted crops and crop residues

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    Abstract

    The global annual potential bioethanol production from the major crops, corn, barley, oat, rice, wheat, sorghum, and sugar cane, is estimated. To avoid conflicts between human food use and industrial use of crops, only the wasted crop, which is defined as crop lost in distribution, is considered as feedstock. Lignocellulosic biomass such as crop residues and sugar cane bagasse are included in feedstock for producing bioethanol as well. There are about 73.9 Tg of dry wasted crops in the world that could potentially produce 49.1 GL year-1 of bioethanol. About 1.5 Pg year-1 of dry lignocellulosic biomass from these seven crops is also available for conversion to bioethanol. Lignocellulosic biomass could produce up to 442 GL year -1 of bioethanol. Thus, the total potential bioethanol production from crop residues and wasted crops is 491 GL year-1, about 16 times higher than the current world ethanol production. The potential bioethanol production could replace 353 GL of gasoline (32% of the global gasoline consumption) when bioethanol is used in E85 fuel for a midsize passenger vehicle. Furthermore, lignin-rich fermentation residue, which is the coproduct of bioethanol made from crop residues and sugar cane bagasse, can potentially generate both 458 TWh of electricity (about 3.6% of world electricity production) and 2.6 EJ of steam. Asia is the largest potential producer of bioethanol from crop residues and wasted crops, and could produce up to 291 GL year-1 of bioethanol. Rice straw, wheat straw, and corn stover are the most favorable bioethanol feedstocks in Asia. The next highest potential region is Europe (69.2 GL of bioethanol), in which most bioethanol comes from wheat straw. Corn stover is the main feedstock in North America, from which about 38.4 GL year-1 of bioethanol can potentially be produced. Globally rice straw can produce 205 GL of bioethanol, which is the largest amount from single biomass feedstock. The next highest potential feedstock is wheat straw, which can produce 104 GL of bioethanol. This paper is intended to give some perspective on the size of the bioethanol feedstock resource, globally and by region, and to summarize relevant data that we believe others will find useful, for example, those who are interested in producing biobased products such as lactic acid, rather than ethanol, from crops and wastes. The paper does not attempt to indicate how much, if any, of this waste material could actually be converted to bioethanol.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)361-375
    Number of pages15
    JournalBiomass and Bioenergy
    Volume26
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Apr 2004

    Profile

    crop
    bioethanol
    Bioethanol
    Crops
    crops
    crop residue
    straw
    feedstocks
    wheat
    biomass
    Feedstocks
    ethanol production
    crop residues
    sugar cane
    rice
    maize
    Straw
    ethanol
    electricity
    Biomass

    Keywords

    • Bioethanol production
    • Biomass energy
    • E85 fuel
    • Lignocellulosic biomass
    • Starch crop

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Agronomy and Crop Science
    • Forestry
    • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment

    Cite this

    Global potential bioethanol production from wasted crops and crop residues. / Kim, Seungdo; Dale, Bruce E.

    In: Biomass and Bioenergy, Vol. 26, No. 4, 04.2004, p. 361-375.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Kim, Seungdo; Dale, Bruce E. / Global potential bioethanol production from wasted crops and crop residues.

    In: Biomass and Bioenergy, Vol. 26, No. 4, 04.2004, p. 361-375.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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