It is without a doubt that our modern thirst and demand for fossil fuels has affected our way of life, and it's not all positive. Everything from our health to our ecology and our economy suffers as a result. These negatives have driven researchers to develop viable alternative fuels from vegetable matter.
Currently sugar cane, corn, and soybeans are being used regularly as alternate-fuels. In the US, we see corn used for making ethanol and soybeans in bio-diesel. There is more success with bio-diesel, as it burns cleaner, extends the life of a diesel engine, and puts much less particulate matter in the air. Ethanol has some way to come along, as it has less energy per gallon to burn as opposed to a fossil fuel, and tends to be harsher on a gasoline engine's hoses.
The biggest problem that currently stands in our way with bio-fuels is the processing. It takes 1700 gallons of water to produce one gallon of ethanol. Add in the fact that it takes almost seven pounds of corn to produce even one metric litre of ethanol, and it's not as viable an alternative as it once seemed. These problems plague all bio fuel processing.
Until the day arrives that efficient processing of bio fuels arrives, people can do things to reduce fuel consumption. Be aware of driving patterns and don't make unnecessary trips. Keep tires at proper inflation. This can make a significant difference. And if public transportation is available, make use of it.
Bio Fuels for Cars
As the use of passenger cars has increased so has effect of pollution. The combustion of burning natural gases like petrol cause harmful effects on the environment and people. It is likely that this is a contributing factor to overall increase in the earth's temperature and change of weather patterns.
We need fuel, but need to protect the earth from the adverse effects. Scientists are working on new energy solutions to remedy the problem. Bio fuels are on the top of the list of alternatives. Not only that but insurance companies have jumped in to encourage people to drive eco-friendly cars by offer discounts on auto insurance quotes to those who own one.
Bio fuels are made from metabolic byproducts (food or organic waste products) or from living organisms. To be considered a bio fuel it must contain at least 80 percent renewable materials. Many times bio fuels are made from the process of photosynthesis and is considered a solar energy source.
Since bio fuels are made from renewable resources like crops they are considered earth-friendly. The trouble is that so many crops are required to generate enough bio fuel to meet present demands. To make a big change would cause great stress on our present environment. We could potentially lose more forest land to make way for crops. Bio fuels consume a lot of energy to just produce and the yield is not yet what it should be for the expense.
Presently, making a full transition to bio fuels is not economically possible. It is too expensive to produce. As scientist press forward into research the hope is that it will one day be a viable solution.