More on Biodiesel  

Posted by Big Gav

I'm gratified to see Energy Bulletin have linked to this blog again recently - and while they didn't call me long winded this time (which I guess was fairly mild criticism for that particular post), and they got the blog name right, I'm not sure I really want to be renamed "Big Gar".

Still, its better than "Big Gay" which is what another misspeller once labelled me (not that there's anything wrong with that).

I posted about producing biodiesel from algae a while back. Unlike destroying the rainforest to grow soy, this seems to be a relatively benign way of producing biofuels.

It looks like this idea is starting to gain some traction, with a US based startup called GreenFuels now trying to do exactly that. Even more interesting is that the approach they are using also consumes carbon emissions, which seems a very Viridian approach to tackling the twin problems of global warming and oil depletion.

(thanks to Ian McPherson for the tip)
Using technology licensed from a NASA project, GreenFuel builds bioreactors--in the shape of 3-meter-high glass tubes fashioned as a triangle--to grow algae. The algae are fed with sunlight, water and carbon-carrying emissions from power plants. The algae are then harvested and turned into biodiesel fuel.

GreenFuel is one of many companies developing businesses based on alternative energies such as biodiesel and so-called clean technologies. These companies are targeting business customers that might benefit from innovative approaches to reducing pollution or lowering their fuel spending.

"Businesses look at productivity and how to eliminate cost--one way is to eliminate waste or to use what you have more efficiently," said Nicholas Parker, executive director of investment group Cleantech Venture Network. "In many ways, clean tech is the enabling tech of 21st-century industrial society."

GreenFuel is initially focusing on energy utilities, which generate greenhouse gases that are seen as contributors to global warming and climate change. But its bioreactor technology can be used in many types of industrial installations or refineries, Berzin said.

Update: Energy Bulletin fixed the typo, so ignore my whinging about misspelled names.
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