A study conducted by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory found that replacing fossil fuels with growing algae in choice United States regions. It can allow for the production of 21 billion gallons of algae oil. That was only in 2011. Let’s see where things have gone since then though!
The study is an in-depth assessment of the United States’ algal biofuel potential. All with respect to water and land availability.
Algae has really been a hot topic of biofuel discussion recently. Yet before no one has taken such a detailed look at how much America could make. As well as how much water and land it would require until now. That came from Mark Wigmosta, the study’s lead author.
Findings show that where one cultivates algae is a huge factor. Only if the aim is to reduce water needed for algal biofuel.
Researchers suggested growing algae in sunny regions and those that have humid climates, such as the Gulf Coast, the Southeastern Seaboard and the Great Lakes.
Doing so gives the country potential to produce 17 percent of the nation’s imported oil used for transportation.
Bioenergy and microalgae
Then the NIH did a report and came up with this for algae research. The following:
The rapid growing population of the world continuously increases the global demand for fuel energy. The intensive use of Petro fuel worldwide leads to its depletion and will bring them close to the point of exhaustion due to unsustainable and nonrenewable nature. Thus, biofuels are now a growing opportunity throughout the world as alternative to fossil fuels. Some developed countries are already producing biofuels at the commercial level.
Biofuels such as biodiesel and bioethanol are proving to be excellent alternative fuels and can be produced from several resources of biomass, such as food crops, crop wastes or fruits, woody parts of plants, garbage, and algae [8, 9]. The advantageous features of biofuels produced from biomass are renewability and a significantly smaller contribution to environmental pollution and global warming. The emission of greenhouse gases mainly CO2 from burning of fossil fuels are the main cause of global warming.
Fossil fuels are responsible for 29 gigatons/year release of CO2 with a total of 35.3 billion tons CO2 till now . More importantly, biofuels including algal fuels have oxygen levels of 10–45% and very low levels of sulphur emissions. All the while petroleum-based fuels have no oxygen levels with high sulphur emission. Biofuels are non-polluting, locally available, accessible, sustainable and reliable fuel obtained from renewable sources. Microalgae algae-based fuels are ecofriendly, nontoxic and with strong potential of fixing global CO2. It has been reported that 1 kg of algal biomass is can fix 1.83 kg of CO2 furthermore some species use SOx and NOx as nutrient flow along with CO2 .
Microalgae are rapidly growing photosynthetic organisms having potential of transforming 9–10% of solar energy (average sunlight irradiance) into biomass with a theoretical yield of about 77 g/biomass/m2/day which is about 280 ton/ha/year [13, 14]. At lager scale cultivation this yield is lower both in outdoor and indoor culture system. In Photobioreactors the actual yield is lower due to loss of absorbed active radiation [15–17], Proper shaking and mixing of the culture in the bioreactor is necessary for uniform distribution of light energy to avail the same strength to all the cells to convert maximum light energy to biomass.
Algae oil could replace as much as 48 percent of current transportation oil imports. However, higher production levels would also require significantly more water and land.
Then in 2009 GreenTech Media Research Reports About a company called BARD Algae. They say it can squeeze thousands of times more oil out of an acre of algae than others. Competitors and scientists are skeptical.
Original find was on EcoSeed!