Biofuels production versus forestry in the presence of lobbies and technological change


Production and use of biofuels, both for electricity and heat generation and for transportation, has grown over the past years. There are many reasons for this, among other climate change, energy security, high fossil fuel prices and rural development goals. Production of most types of biofuels requires land, however, thus competing for land both with agriculture and with forestry. For instance, Hyytiäinen et al. (2008) find for Finland that the production of biofuels (reed canary grass) is the most profitable use of arable land (compared to growing oats or pine trees), although only in the proximity of (at most 40 km from) a thermal power station. Lankoski and Ollikainen (2008), in turn find that production of reed canary grass in Finland, when the alternative is oats, is socially optimal even 100 km away from the power plant. In the tropics, not only fallow or unused agricultural land is used for biofuel production but also rainforest land has been converted, for instance, to palm oil plantations. This development is largely driven by policy measures, for instance, by the European Union's (EU) 20-20-20 target (a reduction of at least 20% in greenhouse gas emissions, and a 20% share of renewable energies in the EU's energy consumption by 2020), set by the European Council in March 2007.



Millions for research into maritime transport and the environment

Maritime transport is a major source of emissions of harmful air pollutants and carbon dioxide. In a new project, a research team from the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI) and the University of Gothenburg has received SEK 6.4...


New research programme for more efficient travel

The Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI) is playing an important role in a major new research programme to find radical solutions leading to fewer trips and more efficient travel, along with tools to enable better use of roads and...


Simulator used to practice emergency responses safely

Emergency responses of the police, ambulance, and rescue services are associated with a high risk of accidents, but practicing them in real traffic is neither safe nor permissible. A simulator-based method developed by the Swedish National Road and Transport...


Simulation of cut-in by manually driven vehicles in platooning scenarios

A study in a VTI-driving simulator has showed that a platoon will be able to handle a cut in from a manually driven car. The results of this study have recently been presented at two conferences in Japan.



The five-year anniversary of European Road Profile Users' Group (ERPUG) Forum will take place at Ramboll head quarter, Copenhagen, Denmark October 19-20, 2017.


Self-driving buses in Sweden next year?

A self-driving, fossil-free bus. This idea might become reality through a forthcoming collaborative project involving the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI), Linköping University and several other participants. The project group aim...