• Biodiesel sustainability: The global impact of potential biodiesel production on the energy–water–food (EWF) nexus

      Chong, Cheng Tung; Loe, Ting Yu; Wong, Kang Yao; Ashokkumar, Veeramuthu; Lam, Su Shiung; Chong, Wen Tong; Borrion, Aiduan; Tian, Bo; Ng, Jo-Han; Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Lingang, Shanghai 201306, China; et al. (Elsevier, 2021-02-01)
      A data-driven model is used to analyse the global effects of biodiesel on the energy–water–food (EWF) nexus, and to understand the complex environmental correlation. Several criteria to measure the sustainability of biodiesel and four main limiting factors for biodiesel production are discussed in this paper. The limiting factors includes water stress, food stress, feedstock quantity and crude oil price. The 155-country model covers crude oil prices ranging from USD10/bbl to USD160/bbl, biodiesel refinery costs ranging from -USD0.30/L to USD0.30/L and 45 multi-generation biodiesel feedstocks. The model is capable of ascertaining changes arising from biodiesel adoption in terms of light-duty diesel engine emissions (NO, CO, UHC and smoke opacity), water stress index (WSI), dietary energy supply (DES), Herfindahl–Hirschman index (HHI) and short-term energy security. With the addition of potential biodiesel production, the renewable energy sector of global primary energy profile can increase by 0.43%, with maximum increment up to 10.97% for Malaysia. At current crude oil price of USD75/bbl and refinery cost of USD0.1/L, only Benin, Ireland and Togo can produce biodiesel profitably. The model also shows that water requirement varies non-linearly with multi-feedstock biodiesel production as blending ratio increases. Out of the 155 countries, biodiesel production is limited by feedstock quantity for 82 countries, 47 are limited by crude oil price, 20 by water stress and 6 by food stress. The results provide insights for governments to set up environmental policy guidelines, in implementing biodiesel technology as a cleaner alternative to diesel.