Biofuel has been around for almost as long as the diesel engine itself. In fact, it was Rudolf Diesel himself who invented the idea. Biodiesel has proven itself to be a great alternative to the fossil fuel industry. Through over one hundred years this form has been available to the public and has been widely used in various forms. With newer technologies and more effective electric vehicles being put on the market, does Biofuel still have a future in the world?
Biofuel Utilizes Recycled Material
Where waste is extremely prevalent in today’s economic structure, the high use of recycling has emerged as a way to cut down on both the long term effects of emissions as well as public safety and health. In countries such as Norway, many recycling centers are utilized to provide electricity to both businesses and residential areas. Norway is one of the most environmentally minded countries on the planet. Their use of recycling plants has worked so successfully that they have nullified almost 100% of their garbage.
They have done such a good job at this that they have required other countries to export their trash to Norway in order for them to use it. The country has also decided to implement a full redesign of its automotive market. By 2025, all vehicles that will be sold as new within the country will have to be 100% electric.
It is no shock that Norway also leads the world in the production and use of Biofuels. With the mixture of ethanol, as well as soybean, olive, and (while still needing it) 20% diesel, the country has effectively cut down on their use of diesel oil by 80%. Again, this country leads the world in environmental sustainability.
Brazil Utilizes Recycled Sugar Cain Biofuel
Brazil has also utilized effective repurposing of one of its largest industries: Sugar Cain. In 2005 the country was running into a fuel shortage. Rising gas prices and the use of diesel had led to many spending over-budget to simply fill their gas tank. The country needed a solution. Utilizing biofuels helped to cut the cost of their initial fuel prices by 20%. The country is one of the largest exporters of raw sugarcane in the world. With the byproduct of their extraction process leaving most of the plant behind, scientists found that this would be a great way to implement the raw biomass and convert it into fuel.
Diesel Powered Nations
With Brazil as one of the largest countries in the world, and Norway’s impressive means of alternative fuel, what other countries have implemented effective alternative fuel strategies. What other areas of the world have made the switch. Well, to tell you the truth, most of them. The European Union heavily relies on the imports of diesel fuel in order to run their vehicles. Diesel has its benefits as opposed to the fuel we use here. Diesel engines have a better fuel mileage and they are far more compatible with biofuels. Thus, many countries of the European Union have implemented some form of biofuel. From public transit in Germany to planes in Italy, biofuel has a worldwide use.
Use In America
The US utilizes extensive research and development into the use of Biofuels. One of the best methods that we have incorporated this is in our military. Non-combat vehicles such as trucks and cargo haulers have been utilizing Biodiesel fuel for over 2-decades. With our dependency on foreign oil drastically tightening in the middle east, it was very clear that our goals were to cut the reliance on foreign oil markets. With the switch to biodiesel, the US made a very sharp cut to the military spending program.
Another major cut came from the trucking industry. If you were to drive from Boston to Los Angeles, there is a 100% chance you’re going through the midwest. The midwest is the heartland of our food production and farmland. One of our largest industries that have boomed since the introduction of alternative fuels has been the use of biodiesel. Farmers have made it a point to reduce their carbon footprint by converting their access biomass into an alternate fuel.
The Future is Bright For Biofuel
Alternative energy sources are becoming more and more popular each day. One of the reasons that we do not necessarily see the benefits outright is due to the commercial value of biodiesel. For many who use these types of engines at home, they are either satisfied with doing things the old fashioned way (which is still better than using traditional gas). Many who use the benefits of biofuel are looking for a cheaper way to get from point a to point b. This has led to some pretty crazy backyard chemistry sets. For those who have converted the traditional diesel engine into an oil-based one, they typically go behind restaurants and use a VW Bus. Also, this hasn’t hit the typical American consumer due to the effectiveness of biodiesel.
Biodiesel is an effective alternative but will produce approximately 8-10% less power from the engine. With this amount of power loss, means that you need to produce that much more power to get the same results as gas. With a free energy source from behind the local restaurant, many don’t really pay mind as their fuel source is practically (or relatively) free.