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New Online Tool Expands Analysis of Biofuels’ Water Impact

January 23, 2015 - 2:25pm


Last week, Argonne National Laboratory released a new version of the Water Assessment for Transportation Energy Resources (WATER) online tool. As with the previous two versions, WATER 3.0 quantifies the water footprint of various biofuel pathways, providing details of the water consumption required for the production of biofuels. Biofuel production requires water during feedstock cultivation and as an input in the conversion process.

This new version provides water footprint analysis at the county level and includes wood residue as a feedstock for the first time. Analysis of the water use requirements for different feedstocks and biofuel pathways can help bioenergy developers to estimate the impact on water quality and to make informed decisions about the most appropriate feedstocks for water-limited areas. Read the Argonne press release to learn more.

This work is a part of the Bioenergy Technologies Office’s (BETO’s) Sustainability Program, which conducts analysis and research to enhance the environmental, social, and economic benefits of bioenergy production while mitigating concerns. These efforts are critical to achieving BETO’s overall goals of developing commercially viable biofuels.

Argonne National Laboratory is one of eleven Energy Department national laboratories that receive BETO funding to conduct bioenergy research.