14 Mar 2024

‘Crop System Efficiency Index’ and Managed Grassland now included in the updated LUC Impact Dataset

LUC Impact Dataset version 2024 now available

Blonk’s LUC Impact Dataset provides Land Use Change (LUC) Greenhouse Gas emissions for 9,000+ crop and country combinations. Our updated 2024 version now includes the ‘Crop System Efficiency Index’, which considers multiple cropping scenarios, and managed grassland as a land use category and additional crop type. Our dataset is calculated using the LUC Impact Tool, which provides a predefined way of calculating greenhouse gas emissions from LUC. LUC emissions arise when land is transformed from one use to another, such as deforestation for the cultivation of crops like soybean and oil palm.

Learn more about the update and how to get the latest LUC Impact Dataset. 

Implementation of the ‘Crop System Efficiency Index’

One of the major updates to the 2024 release of the LUC dataset is the implementation of the Crop System Efficiency Index (CSEI) methodology, considering multiple cropping scenarios. Multiple cropping is a practice in which a plot of land is subsequently planted with varying crops and harvested multiple times in a year. This practice is increasingly applied worldwide, contributing to increasing harvested areas without demanding additional agricultural land. Previously we did not account for LUC emissions in such multiple cropping systems. However, recognizing its importance, we developed a methodology which can account for this system and are now able to apply the CSEI in this year’s dataset release, providing you with more comprehensive and fair results.

Implementation of ‘Managed Grassland’

Also new in this update is the addition of managed grassland as a land use category and an additional crop type, included only for specific countries where data is available, such as Brazil and the Netherlands.

For some countries, the consideration of managed grassland as a separate land use category has a major effect on the LUC emission results of all crops. This has to do with the sensitivity of the calculation method to contractions and expansions in land use categories: if a vast contraction in a land use category is observed, the method dictates that most of the expansion of a certain crop will probably be due to contraction of this land use category. Expansion of managed grassland and contraction of natural grassland in the same country was previously not observed as both grassland types are considered together in the general ‘grassland’ category. With the differentiation between the two types, the contraction of natural grassland becomes apparent.

For example: In Brazil, the total grassland area is not contracting considerably, while forest area shows a decline. Previously, crop expansions would mainly be considered to go at the expense of forest area. With the differentiation between natural and managed grassland, it becomes apparent that natural grassland is contracting considerably. Considering the differentiation, crop expansions would mainly be considered to go at the expense of natural grassland. While the conversion of any kind of natural land use are undesired, the carbon losses for the conversion of grassland are lower compared to the conversion of forest. For this reason, the differentiation in grassland types considerably lowers the LUC emissions of all crops in Brazil.

Equal and Linear Amortization

The updated LUC Impact Dataset still includes both equal amortization, in line with the PAS2050-1 and therefore the European Commission’s PEF guidance, and linear amortization, in line with the SBTi FLAG standards.

Implementation of the updates in the LUC Impact Tool

We anticipate updating our web-based LUC impact tool to reflect these methodological advancements by April 2024.

Learn more about the methodology

Do you want to know more about the applied methodology and data sources used to calculate LUC emissions presented in the LUC Impact Dataset? Download the methodology report via the button below. 

Get the dataset

The dataset comes as an Excel file and gives the results of the three calculation methods from the ‘country known, land use unknown’ functionality of the tool. The weighted average takes into account relative differences in crop expansion at the expense of forest, grassland, annual/perennial. The normal average is a simple average of these options. All results are scaled to the relative amount of expansion of the crop. The worst case of the average and weighted average is used in the PAS2050-1 protocol. The licensing fee is €580 (excl. VAT).

More information

Get in touch

Jixin Liu
Sales and Customer Support Consultant

Do you have questions about the LUC impact dataset and want to obtain a license? Get in touch with Jixin.