Spatially Explicit Modeling of Criteria Air Pollutants from Agricultural and Forestry Feedstock Production

Research output: NRELPresentation


The Feedstock Production Emissions to Air Model (FPEAM) is a spatially explicit supply chain model that quantifies criteria air pollutants and precursors generated by biomass production, harvest and transportation to biorefineries. FPEAM was most recently used for the 2016 Billion Ton Study (BTS) published by the U.S. Department of Energy Bioenergy Technologies Office. This presentation describes several use cases for the model, and provides an overview of recent restructuring that increases FPEAM's usability and functionality. FPEAM currently estimates emissions of volatile organic compounds, particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides, and carbon monoxide from on-farm equipment operation, on-farm fugitive dust, on-farm chemical (fertilizer, herbicide and insecticide) application, and biomass transportation. These calculations are implemented within FPEAM as modules, which independently perform calculations for each emissions category. This structure allows users to include or exclude emissions categories according to the goal and scope of their analysis. Each module's input data defines the activities taking place with information including fuel combusted, chemicals applied, and equipment used. Users can replace or augment the default input data to quantify additional pollutant types, emissions categories, farming practices and biomass types. Emissions from biomass transportation and on-farm equipment operation are by default calculated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Motor Vehicle Emission Simulator (MOVES) and NONROAD model, respectively. These models - which are computationally intensive but provide detailed results - can optionally be replaced with user-provided emissions factors for fuel combustion and vehicle operation. This approach reduces FPEAM's runtime and allows users to run sensitivity analyses around biomass production and transportation scenarios. Other enhancements currently under development are the use of farm-to-biorefinery route information to increase the spatial resolution of transportation emissions, and a module to connect FPEAM and the Intervention Model for Air Pollution (InMAP), which will enable the quantification of human health impacts.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages14
StatePublished - 2018

Publication series

NamePresented at the 7th International Congress on Sustainability Science & Engineering, 12-15 August 2018, Cincinnati, Ohio

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PR-6A20-72126


  • bioenergy feedstock
  • biomass
  • biorefinery
  • carbon monoxide
  • criteria air pollutants
  • emission factors
  • fuel combustion
  • particulate matter
  • supply chain model
  • transportation
  • vehicle operation


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