Purpose of the Conference
The implications of large-scale biofuels and bioenergy production on environmental systems and social conditions are largely unknown. Yet despite this lack of fundamental sustainability knowledge, there currently is a rapid movement toward the development of biofuels and bioenergy production systems in the Pan American region, which will likely lead to dramatic changes in existing human and natural systems.
The purpose of this conference is to gather a network of biofuel sustainability researchers from a wide range of disciplines along with industry leaders, government officials, leaders of non-governmental organizations, foundations, and other professionals to focus on a range of issues, including community impacts, the water-energy nexus, biodiversity, soil biogeochemical cycles, energy policy, environmental life cycle assessment, food security, and biomass supply transportation logistics.
State of the art research methods and results will be presented, gaps in knowledge identified, and recommendations for future sustainability research topics and processes formulated.
Proceedings of the RCN Conference on Pan American Biofuels and Bioenergy Sustainability are now available:
The observations and discussions from this conference will be utilized as the basis of a Strategic Roadmap Report to integrate and guide research priorities and processes across the Pan America region.
Academic researchers, governmental and policy-making authorities, private companies, entrepreneurs, non-governmental organizations, foundations, and other groups or individuals involved in biofuels and bioenergy development.
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Eight themes, or disciplines, will be addressed: socioeconomics, the water-energy nexus, biodiversity, biogeochemical cycles, food security, biomass supply transportation logistics, life cycle assessment, and energy policy. Recognizing that a systems approach is essential for development of a sustainable biofuels and bioenergy sector, parallel presentation and discussion sessions will address the eight themes singly and then within cross-disciplinary and cross-institutional contexts.
Each session will feature one or more invited overview presentation and a series of offered technical talks on current research and Pan American case studies; at the end of each session, discussions stimulated by a panel will focus on identification of knowledge gaps and recommended steps to address these gaps. Additional technical presentations will be made in an afternoon poster session.
Students, researchers, foundations, government agencies, and private investors/entrepreneurs are invited to submit abstracts for technical presentations, and to prepare poster presentations.
On the final morning, reports of the previous days’ sessions will be used in an integrative session to stimulate discussions on refining critical knowledge gaps and recommendations for future research that were identified in earlier sessions. There will then be a further opportunity for input and discussion by conference participants in the afternoon by contributing to the preparation of a conference “road map” report that will synthesize conference findings.
Posters relevant to the Conference's themes are invited. Authors are encouraged to consider how their submissions contribute to discussions on knowledge gaps, research processes, and integration of knowledge between disciplines and institutions. .
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