Better than corn? Algae set to beat out other biofuel feedstocks.

AuthorHerro, Alana
PositionEYE ON EARTH - Brief article

Forget corn, sugar cane, and even switchgrass. Some experts believe that algae are set to eclipse all other biofuel feedstocks as the cheapest, easiest, and most environmentally friendly way to produce liquid fuel, reports Kiplinger's Biofuels Market Alert.

The inputs for algae are simple: the single-celled organisms need only sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide to grow. They can quadruple in biomass in just one day, and they help remove carbon from the air and nitrogen from waste-water. Some types of algae comprise more than 50 percent oil, and an average hectare of algae grown today for pharmaceutical industries can produce 47,000 liters of biodiesel each year. By comparison, an average hectare of corn produces 3,950 liters of ethanol per year, and a hectare of soybeans yields just 655 liters of biodiesel per year.


Douglas Henston, CEO of Solix Biofuels, has estimated that replacing all current U.S. diesel...

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