Biofuels and Climate Change:Farmers' Land Use Decisions
The Biofuels and Climate Change: Farmers' Land Use Decisions (BACC: FLUD) project aims to research farmers’ decisions to grow crops as feedstocks for renewable energy production ("biofuel crops"), and farmer's adaptation to climate change. BACC: FLUD is a collaborative project uniting faculty across multiple social and natural science disciplines, along with engineering, and between the educational institutions of the University of Kansas and Kansas State University. This project is funded by a five year grant from the National Science Foundation. Although the current research scope covers the state of Kansas, the long-range plan is to extend the study to all US states producing biofuel crops. Project objectives are as follows:  extract information from a satellite remote sensing land cover database;  develop and implement a survey instrument for gathering information from farmers;  develop and implement a protocol for interviewing farmers;  integrate a variety of datasets in order to develop a rich, longitudinal database on land use decisions with human and environmental dimensions;  develop a unified set of cross-disciplinary empirical methods - qualitative and quantitative - for identifying the factors driving farmers’ decisions.
This project intends to deliver three broad impacts. First, research results promise to improve Integrated Assessment Models that estimate regional carbon emissions and facilitate future climate impact simulation by generating more accurate policy scenarios and predictions of regional land use. Second, research results will help us to understand better the potential impacts of climate change on the US agricultural sector since the project highlights the effect of climate change on land use decisions. Third, the project contributes to society’s ability to produce renewable energy from cultivated feedstocks in a balanced manner that appreciates the trade-offs associated with biofuel crop cultivation, namely, impacts on food supplies, water availability, and surface water quality.
The BACC: FLUD project is embedded within a much larger research project examining climate change and renewable energy, which represents Phase VI of the Kansas NSF EPSCoR (KNE) program.
Project Investigator and Co-InvestigatorsDr. Dietrich Earnhart, Project Investigator, Economics, KU
Dr. Joe Aistrup, Political Science, Interim Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences, K State
Dr. Jason Bergtold, Agricultural Economics, K State
Dr. Marcellus Caldas, Geography, K State
Dr. J. Christopher Brown, Geography and Environmental Studies, KU
Dr. Stephen Egbert, Geography, KU
Dr. Johannes J. Feddema, Geography, KU
Dr. Jane W. Gibson, Anthropology, KU
Dr. Eric Hanley, Sociology, KU
Dr. Laszlo Kulcsar, Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, K State
Dr. Joane Nagel, Sociology, KU
Dr. Jeff Peterson, Agricultural Economics, K State
Dr. Val Smith, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, KU
Dr. Belinda S. M. Sturm, Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering, KU
Dr. Stacey Swearingen White, Architecture and Urban Planning and Environmental Studies, KU
Dr. Theresa Selfa, Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, K State - Service to the team for Year 1
- Kansas NSF EPSCoR
The National Science Foundation (NSF) established the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) as a way to promote scientific progress in states that have traditionally received lesser amounts of NSF research and development funding.
For a list of upcoming BACC: FLUD research team meetings and sponsored events, please visit our events and resources page. For more information, please contact:
Institute for Policy & Social Research
1541 Lilac Lane, Blake 607
Lawrence, Kansas 66045
Phone: (785) 864-4507
Travis Weller Institute for Policy & Social Research 1541 Lilac Lane, Blake 607 Lawrence, Kansas 66045 Phone: (785) 864-4605 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org