Climate change is mitigated by emission cuts and by binding atmospheric carbon dioxide to plants and soil. UPM is doing research to evaluate the size of the carbon sink generated by its brassica carinata plantations – a new feedstock for biofuel production – in Uruguay.
Carbon sequestration or capturing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and storing it in plants and soil, is an efficient way to mitigate climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) emphasises in its 2018 report how important carbon sinks in forests and soil are in alleviating the impact of climate change.
“Cultivating carinata in Uruguay benefits not only the environment, but local farmers and UPM´s businesses as well,” confirms Liisa Ranta, Sustainability Manager, UPM Biofuels Development. “The plant provides an excellent feedstock for our biofuels production. And because the carinata farms absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, the carbon footprint of our renewable fuels is diminished further. As important, local farmers will have extra income from cultivating carinata as a second crop.”
Brassica carinata is an oilseed crop especially suited to the sustainable production of biofuels. The rest of the plant can be used for animal feed while the residual biomass increase carbon concentration in soil.