Integrating spatial and biomass planning for the United States

Sicong Wang, Shifeng Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Biomass is low-carbon energy and has tremendous potential as an alternative to fossil fuels. However, the significant role of biomass in future low-carbon energy portfolio depends heavily on its consumption. The paper presents a first attempt to examine the spatial-temporal patterns of biomass consumption in the United States (US), using a novel method-spatial Seemingly Unrelated Regression (SUR) model, in order to strengthen the link between energy planning and spatial planning. In order to obtain the robust parameters of spatial SUR models and estimate the parameters efficiently, an iterative maximum likelihood method, which takes full advantage of the stationary characteristic of maximum likelihood estimation, has been developed. The robust parameters of models can help draw a proper inference for biomass consumption. Then the spatial-temporal patterns of biomass consumption in the US at the state level are investigated using the spatial SUR models with the estimation method developed and data covering the period of 2000–2012. Results show that there are spatial dependences among biomass consumption. The presence of spatial dependence in biomass consumption has informative implications for making sustainable biomass polices. It suggests new efforts to adding a cross-state dimension to state-level energy policy and coordinating some elements of energy policy across states are still needed. In addition, results consistent with classic economic theory further proves the correctness of applying the spatial SUR models to investigate the spatial-temporal patterns of biomass consumption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-120
Number of pages8
Early online date10 Aug 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes


UK EPSRC and ESRC award (Grant no.: EP/K012398/1 ).


  • Biomass
  • Energy planning
  • Renewable energy
  • Spatial dependence
  • Sustainable development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Pollution
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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