ISBPE 2018 Schedule, Wells College, Aurora, NY, USA

Wednesday - June 13, 2018

Conference Welcome Address and Reception 

Reception Starts at 3:15 and End 5:45

Welcome Address

Jessica Lambert, President ISBPE

The Haudenosaunee Welcomes ISBPE

Neil Patterson, Assistant Director, Center for Native Peoples and the Environment, SUNY - ESF

Welcome to Wells College

Cindy Speaker, Dean and Provost, Wells College

Sustainability and BioPhysical Economics at Wells

Marion Brown, Director, Center for Sustainability and the Environment, Wells College

BioPhysical Economics So Far

Kent Klitgaard, Vice President, ISBPE

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Thursday - June 14, 2018

New evidence for the end of growth?

Morning Session: Energy, Climate Change & Sustainability

A Little Bit about Dynamics and Perception

Tom Stiadle

The Paris Agreement under the lens of biophysical economics

Albert Bates

Article II of the Paris Agreement requires signatories hold the increase of global average temperature to below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to hold to 1.5°C. These goals cannot be achieved merely by substituting renewable energy. They require carbon dioxide removal (CDR). The present range of CDR options includes:


changes to land use management;

accelerated weathering;

marine phytoplankton;

bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS); and

direct air capture (DAC).


Quantitative assessments have been undertaken for each of these options. Prior studies have largely externalized the labor and energy required to bring these methods to scale. Applying a biophysical economics analysis, we conclude that it would be possible to economically scale four of the five techniques to achieve drawdown (net sequestration over emissions) by mid-century if fossil emissions reductions were also forthcoming. The fifth technique (DAC) fails on net energy grounds.


BECCS would also fail were it limited to its common conceptualization relying upon low EROI biomass energy to pay for fragile and suspect geological storage of carbon dioxide. However, by substituting pyrolysis for combustion and adding biochar and carbon co-products, both feedstocks and storages diversify and the finance becomes favorable.

How much wind and solar are needed to realize emissions benefits from storage?

Energy storage is widely cited as a solution to enable increased usage of non-dispatchable and intermittent renewable energy technologies such as wind and solar. While energy storage is essential to increase the penetration of the renewable energy, it may not be always inherently green and its environmental implications could depend on other factors such as the grid mix, energy storage capacity, and the effects of storage operation on the overall electricity generation.