Archive for March, 2007

Mar 11 2007

Posted by under Uncategorized

Misconceptions on Biofuel

Misconception # 1: Biofuel generates a small amount of energy than it takes to produce them.

Fact: Over the years, technology has significantly improved. A lot of researches and tests had been done to prove that biofuels like ethanol and biodiesel generate energy that is comparable to conventional diesel fuel. Ethanol gives about 1.5 units of energy for every unit of energy used. In addition, biodiesel even provides 3.2 units of energy to every unit of energy used. As a matter of fact, “traditional” fuel (gasoline) uses 20% more energy to make it than it provides or converts.

Misconception # 2: Biofuel brings about food shortage.

Fact: There is more than enough food to cater to the general public. If there are billions of people who suffer starvation in different parts of the world, that is not primarily because there is not enough food. Sufficient amount of food exist than there has ever been before. The main reason why people starve is not because of biofuel production but because of inequitable economic system.

Misconception # 3: Modification of all engines is a must in using Biofuel.

Fact: This is not true for all. In biodiesel for example, it can be used in unmodified engines – be it a car, bus, truck, boat, construction equipment, generator or oil home heating units. Biodiesel can be utilized in pure form however it may necessitate engine modifications to refrain from maintenance and performance troubles. On another note, gasoline containing 10% ethanol (E10) can also be used. The extensive use of E10 is encouraged in some states. The use of E10 can be used on all gasoline operated vehicles without making massive modification to their engines.

Misconception # 4: Biofuel must be subsidized to be affordable.

Fact: The geographic area, base organic material (soybean, corn, etc) and supplier will greatly determine the price of biodiesel. It varies depending on the said determinants. It may rate a little more expensive than traditional fuels at the current time due to the demand that is not as great. Nevertheless, as demand increases and as the public realize the advantages of a biodegradable, renewable fuel source, the price will eventually drop.

Misconception # 5: Biofuels will completely replace conventional fuel.

Fact: The ultimate target of the biofuel manufacturing is not to totally replace conventional diesels such as petroleum diesel. However, its main goal is to broaden its usefulness, efficacy and worth. As one of numerous alternative fuels, biodiesel have a spot in the development and improvement of a balanced energy policy.

Reality: At the present time, biofuels are the best alternatives to fossil fuels which are nonrenewable. Not only traditional petroleum fuel is far more expensive, it is also damaging our environment. Biodiesel and ethanol are both clean, grow-your-own fuels which can be produced on-site in local villages or communities from locally available, renewable resources, most of the time using equipment that a local workshop can make and maintain. This can make biofuel an economical option to fossil fuels and can aid in strengthening local communities both socially and economically. It can create jobs and help boost the economy as well.

No Comments »