Supply Chain Design of Biocarbon Production from Miscanthus through Hydrothermal Carbonization in Southern Ontario: A Life Cycle Assessment Perspective

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University of Guelph

Miscanthus has emerged as a promising energy crop, with successful plantation feasibility demonstrated in southern Ontario. Converting this low-value biomass into valuable biocarbon through hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) presents new opportunities and markets for this feedstock. To promote the scale-up of HTC for biocarbon production from Miscanthus in southern Ontario, an environmentally focused approach was adopted, utilizing various tools and methods to establish diverse supply chain scenarios within the region. Through life cycle assessment (LCA) analysis, it was found that biomass densification at farms did not offer significant environmental benefits in the defined scenarios. However, integrating anaerobic digestion (AD) with HTC resulted in considerably higher environmental advantages compared to using HTC alone. Based on the study's findings, the east side of southern Ontario emerged as the most suitable location for establishing a supply chain dedicated to biocarbon production.

Life Cycle Assessment, Hydrothermal Carbonization,, Anaerobic Digestion, Miscanthus, Agricultural Biomass, Bio-Carbon, Supply Chain, Hydrochar