Low-carbon biofuels are projected to play a critical role in the early and middle stages of a transition away from petroleum fuels, and they will likely have a longer-term role in uses like aviation and maritime transportation that require energy-dense fuels in high volumes. Policies over the last decade encouraged the production of conventional biofuels such as crop-based ethanol, but cellulosic fuels with a significantly lower carbon footprint failed to materialize at commercial scale. This webinar will look back at the past decade to understand why this happened, and will consider the likelihood that current policies will deliver low-carbon biofuels at the scales needed for hard-to-decarbonize sectors by 2030.
Dr. Julie Witcover is an Assistant Project Scientist at the UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies and Policy Institute for Energy, Environment, and the Economy. She focuses on analysis of low-carbon fuel policies, particularly biofuel supply and land use change modeling, and provides technical review to policymakers on these topics. Prior work at the International Food Policy Research Institute focused on land use impacts on poverty and deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon. She received a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from UC Davis in 2008, an M.A. in International Economics from Johns Hopkins University, and a bachelor’s degree in Government from Harvard College.
Nik Pavlenko is the International Council on Clean Transportation’s Fuels team lead. Mr. Pavlenko’s work is focused on the techno-economics and climate implications of alternative fuels, as well as the policy interventions necessary to support the commercialization and deployment of advanced, ultralow-carbon fuels. He has a background in life-cycle assessment and carbon accounting, and has researched the indirect, market-mediated emissions associated with various aspects of fuel production. Mr. Pavlenko has been involved in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s development of carbon accounting practices and eligibility rules for sustainable aviation fuels for the CORSIA emissions scheme for over 5 years, and works on the implementation of aviation fuel policies worldwide. Prior to joining the ICCT, Mr. Pavlenko supported the EPA’s life-cycle material management model, the Waste-Reduction Model (WARM), as well as contributed life-cycle assessment expertise to a variety of environmental impact statements on fossil fuel infrastructure and vehicle efficiency. He holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Yale University.