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The Role of Bioenergy in Brazil's Low-Carbon Future

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Poggio, M., Império, M., Baptista, L.B., Schaffer, R., Lucena A., Szklo, A., Rochedo, P., Hultman, N., McJeon, H., Clarke, L., (2023). The Role of Bioenergy in Brazil's Low-Carbon Future. ScienceDirect.  


The urgency of climate change requires a clear understanding of how global technological trends can alter a country's least-cost, low-carbon strategy (net-zero), considering its own advantages in terms of resources, existing knowledge, and energy facilities and converters. This study compares Brazil's least-cost strategies to reach net zero CO2 emissions by 2050 with strategies based on the technological development patterns suggested by the most recent International Energy Agency's (IEA) net zero report, which are assumed to represent global trends in technology deployment for climate mitigation. Our study is based on the use of an Integrated Assessment Model (IAM) for Brazil. Four different mitigation scenarios are explored. Results show that the IEA technological profile deeply differs from a non-constrained technological deployment for Brazil, particularly in terms of the liquid fuels mix and the time of implementation of electric-driven mobility. In Brazil, biofuels use stand out as the least-cost solution to reach net zero emissions by 2050, mostly due to the use of bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS), which can slow down fossil fuel phase out in the country. Nevertheless, a hybrid strategy can include the use of ethanol or even hydrogen fuel cells in electric powertrains, though this would require further research and development.

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