Where to implement local biotech innovations? A framework for multi-scale socio-economic and environmental impact assessment of Green Bio-Refineries

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Green Bio-Refineries (GBRs) have economic and environmental potentials through changing land use from cereals to grass production and provision of grass-based protein feed for livestock production and other valuable byproducts. However, the potentials are dependent on local conditions of the GBRs, such as land productivity, environmental sensitivity and transport distances for feedstock as well as the regional economy which GBRs are a part of. In this paper, we compare the total (direct, indirect and induced) effects of different location choices of GBRs in Denmark at different (municipal, regional, national) scales − a key step for decisions about development of GBRs from both investors' and authorities' perspectives. We integrate a local life-cycle assessment (LCA), a geographic information system (GIS) analysis and an economic-environmental input-output (EEIO) based model (LINE) into a common framework (GIS-LCA-EEIO). We show that locating GBRs in Western Denmark, where the soils are primarily sandy and livestock densities are high, generates higher socio-economic gains than in Eastern Denmark, where the soils are primarily loamy and the concentrations of livestock are lower. We conclude by sketching out priority areas for developing GBRs and discuss the policy implications of the results within the context of development of a bio-based economy.
Original languageEnglish
JournalLand Use Policy
Pages (from-to)141-151
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2017

ID: 188783254