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BioSpaceOpt

2010 to 2011

For the illustration, assessment and optimisation of biomass utilisation paths ranging from the availability of biomass cultivation areas to the utilisation as food or energy a geographically explicit modelling framework is developed. The framework includes climatological, economical, social and ecological aspects and allows for the generation of scenarios regarding future developments with special focus on climate change. An exemplary implementation is carried out for the region of Sauwald as a case study.

Optimised land use in combination with an optimisation of - mostly competitive - biomass utilisation paths represents an increasing challenge in the context of the actual climate- and energy policy. A sustainable and efficient use of available areas is therefore more necessary than ever. With the current project _BioSpaceOpt_ a transferable and scientifically profound model framework for the assessment and optimisation of regional biomass utilisation paths is developed. This tool can contribute substantially to the development and implementation of optimised regionally specific and spatially explicit biomass utilisation strategies.

Based on regionally specific conditions geographically explicit growth rates and yields of relevant crops, crop rotations, grasslands and forest types as well as demand structures for energy in terms of heat and electricity are estimated. Furthermore the demand for food and biofuels for the region of interest is estimated and included in the model framework.

The model based implementation is carried out with a raster based approach. It is intended to obtain a spatial resolution of 250 m raster cells. Background of this approach is, besides the explicit inclusion of local conditions regarding the feasible utilisation of biomass, also the inclusion of the geographic setup of the existing and future biomass utilisation system. Regional statistic data and land use data on a raster basis represent the major data basis for the model framework. Furthermore the model is based on data on climatologic influences and possible changes as well as cost structures, ecological and social factors.

On this basis individual feasible biomass utilisation paths are identified for the region of interest and their respective contribution in an optimal setup of the region regarding biomass use. Emissions, costs, ecological factors as well as land use competition are the relevant criteria for this integrative assessment and optimisation approach.

Based on different assumptions on future price developments for biomass and aspects of climate changes individual scenarios of an optimised regional biomass utilisation are illustrated. The modelling results serve as a sensitising instrument and as a basis for decision making processes regarding a regional biomass strategy. The model results offer a vital support for regional participatory processes and illustrate causal connections within the utilisation of biomass resources. Additionally cartographic visualisations encourage the sensitising regarding possible future changes. The developed model framework will be exemplarily implemented as a case study for the region of Sauwald.
 

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Climate and Energy Fund Austria
Telefon: +43(0) 662 834 602 - 0