Comparative Evaluation of Three Sugarcane Supply Strategies in Colombia: Logistics, Energy and GHG Emissions
Sugarcane-based ethanol in Colombia has a prospective opportunity to explore the production of ethanol from lignocellulosic biomass taking into account that a large amount of generated residues (between 50 and 100 t/ha) are left on the field after green harvesting. The use of sugarcane green harvesting residues for ethanol production could be considered as a feasible solution but it is facing high supply costs. A bottom-up engineering cost model was used to estimate the green harvesting residues supply cost for three collection strategies. The model took into account the investment and operation costs of the residues collection, processing, delivery, and machineries including depreciations, repair and maintenance, and labor cost. Overall energy consumptions and life-cycle GHG emissions of the three strategies were analyzed. The integral harvesting showed the best performance in costs (6.01 USD/dry-t), energy consumptions (125.32 MJ/dry-t), and GHG emissions (7.74 kg CO2-eq/dry-t), followed by the baled and chopped residues.