En-ROADS User Guide


Discourage or encourage the use of trees, forest waste, and agricultural crops to create energy. Bioenergy is energy produced from the burning, or combustion, of living organic material as solids (e.g., wood pellets), liquids (e.g., ethanol), or gas (e.g., methane from decomposition). There are a variety of sources, some of which can be sustainable and others which can be worse than burning coal.


Discouraging bioenergy:

  • Public information campaigns that criticize sources of bioenergy that are not sustainable and raise public concerns about the downsides of bioenergy.

Encouraging bioenergy:

  • Government incentives and/or targets to convert land into growing feedstocks that provide the plant material and biomass needed to produce bioenergy.

  • Research, development, and investment into new technologies that can produce new forms of biofuels, and vehicles and industry that can use or support these biofuels.

Big Messages🔗

  • Bioenergy is not a high leverage response to climate change – while it uses a renewable resource, it still emits large amounts of carbon dioxide and faces supply constraints with scale up.

Key Dynamics🔗

Potential Co-Benefits of Discouraging Bioenergy🔗

Equity Considerations🔗

  • Land used for bioenergy crops can reduce land availability for food production and compromise food security.
  • Farmer livelihoods can be severely impacted by shifting agriculture markets, so steps should be taken to help workers and farmers transition to shifting crop demands.



Slider Settings🔗

The Bioenergy slider is divided into 5 input levels: highly taxed, taxed, status quo, subsidized, and highly subsidized. Each of the energy supply sliders (Coal, Oil, Natural Gas, Bioenergy, Nuclear, and Renewables) is set to reflect a similar percentage cost increase or decrease for each input level. The following table displays the numerical ranges for each input level of the Bioenergy slider:

highly taxed taxed status quo subsidized highly subsidized
Change in price per barrel of oil equivalent (boe) +$30 to +$15 +$15 to +$5 +$5 to -$5 -$5 to -$15 -$15 to -$30
Cost increase or decrease +60% to +30% +30% to +10% +10% to -10% -10% to -30% -30% to -60%

Model Structure🔗

  • This sector tracks several stages of bioenergy installations, or energy supply capacity including: capacity under development, under construction, and actually producing energy, as well as the delays between each stage.
  • Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) is controlled separately under the Technological Carbon Removal slider. However, a large breakthrough cost reduction in bioenergy can result in BECCS increasing as it becomes cost competitive with other sources.
  • Future modeling in this sector will add more refinement to the ways the bioenergy supply is characterized and include stronger links to the amount of available land.


Please visit support.climateinteractive.org for additional inquiries and support.

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