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Assessment and derivation of greenhouse gas emission factors in sugarcane ethanol production in the states of Alagoas and São Paulo, a contribution to the RENOVABIO


In 2017 the Federal government created the National Biofuels Policy (Law 13.576), called RenovaBio. For its implementation and monitoring RenovaBio will need to establish (and periodically update) mandatory annual GHG emission reduction targets for the commercialization of fuels and the requirements for technical and economic regulation of the Decarbonization Credit. In this context, this proposal aims to derive greenhouse gas emission factors for the main sources of emissions from agricultural activities related to sugarcane ethanol production in the states of Alagoas (largest producer in the North/Northeast) and São Paulo (largest producer in the Center-South region), as a way to contribute to the RenovaBio National Biofuels Policy. To achieve the proposed objective, this project will be composed of three stages: i) derivation of N2O emission factors from vinasse application and for soil C stock change factors in different sugarcane harvesting systems in Alagoas and São Paulo; ii) Data generation and synthesis and update of emission factors (agricultural sector) of different management practices adopted in the Center-South region of the country; iii) Sensitivity analysis, including RenovaBio's assessment of the effects of specific emission factors on GHG emission estimates. The main expected results, from a technical and scientific point of view, are: i) Derive N2O emission factors due to the application of vinasse to the states of Alagoas and São Paulo; ii) Derive soil C change factors for sugarcane cultivation (in the different harvesting systems) for Alagoas; iii) Update soil C change factors for sugarcane cultivation (in the different harvesting systems) for the Center-South region; iv) Derive N2O and CO2 emission factors for the main sources of soil emissions managed for the Center-South region; v) Assess the impact of emission factors developed on RenovaCalc's GHG estimates; vi) Training of the IFAL team to sample GHG flows in agricultural systems and to operate the GCMS; vii) Human resources training, since undergraduate and graduate students will work on the project in Alagoas and São Paulo. Regarding impacts on society, the present proposal understands that it will contribute to the improvement of the National Biofuels Policy, by generating information that will allow the establishment of emission reduction targets, and the monitoring of emissions / concession of decarbonization credits, more consistently and representative of Brazil's climate, soil and management conditions. This should give RenovaBio greater credibility, as well as contribute to encouraging the use of ethanol to replace fossil fuels, strengthening the biofuel production chain, which should translate into increased employment and income in the sector, and obviously help, mitigating global warming and climate change. (AU)

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