(491f) Simulation and Comparative Life Cycle Assessment of Second Generation Ethanol in Colombia Using Gasoline As a Reference

Authors: 
Sierra, R., Universidad de los Andes
Quiroz, M. D. P., Universidad de los Andes



Several assertions about biofuels convenience insist on environmental benefits of its use in spark-ignition engine vehicles, including reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG), pollution, carbon monoxide, particulate matter, and other contaminants emissions, thus providing a contribution to climate change mitigation. However, critical assessments show counterarguments which explore full fuel life cycle and expose negative environmental impacts. For these reasons, a comprehensive analysis that deals with all stages of feedstock extraction and distribution, production, delivery to public consumption and use of finished fuel is necessary.

Estimations of environmental burdens for second generation ethanol from sugarcane bagasse and those of gasoline, provide insights on the actual benefits of the biofuel compared to those of the fossil fuel. A comparative Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) on gasoline vs ethanol as liquid fuels for transportation in Colombia allows an objective quantification of such benefits. This work presents the results of performing the methodological steps of a “cradle to grave” approach of both bagasse-based ethanol and gasoline.

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