LCFS, LCA and Carbon Pricing 



Julie Witcover 

Additional Researchers

Lew Fulton 


We have developed two project ideas in this area, to build on our ongoing LCFS tracking exercises.  The 2019 project will be exploratory in nature. We will revise this description after the 1st quarter with a more specific set of objectives for 2019, depending upon progress and available support from other sources: 

  • LCFS Credit Price Model development and analysis of LCFS options to 2030.  Building off a biofuel policy model developed by Christensen and Hobbs that includes LCFS credit pricing1and LCFS compliance scenarios such as those presented in CARB’s Illustrative Compliance Scenario calculator and the California’s Clean Fuel Future report, we would develop a credit price/fuel supply model to allow exploration of the impacts of various market and program design factors on compliance fuel mix and credit prices. Implications of scenarios such as hypothetical credit price bounds (floor/ceiling), varying fuel supply costs, and sensitivity to CI ratings could be considered.  

  • ILUC Factors (Lower priority and not expected to be addressed beyond a preliminary fashion during 2019) Consideration of dynamic factors that impact indirect land use change (iLUC) impacts.  CARB accounts for iLUC by adding single-value iLUC factors to fuel pathways that use a feedstock judged to present a significant iLUC risk.  The iLUC factor is estimated under particular baseline conditions and over hypothetical impact timeframes. In other regulatory frameworks, different baseline conditions and impact timeframes have been analyzed.  Research in recent years has highlighted important dynamic elements of iLUC impacts, due to commodity market and land use dynamics as well as policy effects.  We would consider the potential for assessing the dynamics of iLUC impacts and the key factors driving them, whether findings can inform fuel carbon policies such as the LCFS, and their . potential impact on development of sustainable biomass feedstock supply for future low-carbon fuel systems. 

Both projects aim to provide insights into the design and implementation of LCFS and similar alternative fuel policies in CA and other jurisdictions moving forward with or considering an LCFS-like program.