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Additional info for Biofuels
Ethanol industry with raw biomass. Fuel for Thought Ethanol factories add enzymes to giant tanks of Some experts are concerned corn. The enzymes help that farmers will not be convert corn sugars into able to grow enough corn to satisfy our need for both alcohol in a process called food and fuel. fermentation. The finished product, ethanol, is added to gasoline to make gasohol. Gasohol is a blend of 90 percent gasoline and 10 percent ethanol. S. Most car engines burn gasohol as easily as they burn gasoline.
32 33 CHAPTER TWELVE Energy Crops Many scientists believe the best strategy for producing ethanol from biomass is to use energy crops rather than food crops. Energy crops include fast growing trees like poplar and native grasses like switchgrass. Energy crops require less fertilizer and are more productive. Energy crops, grown on farms just like food crops, are better for the environment and cost less to produce. 34 Burning biomass pollutes the air by releasing carbon dioxide. But, unlike fossil fuels, biomass crops absorb an equal amount of carbon dioxide during photosynthesis.
The finished product, ethanol, is added to gasoline to make gasohol. Gasohol is a blend of 90 percent gasoline and 10 percent ethanol. S. Most car engines burn gasohol as easily as they burn gasoline. 30 31 CHAPTER ELEVEN Sugarcane Ethanol Some forms of biomass are better ethanol producers than corn. Brazil, for example, uses sugarcane. Experts point out that an acre of sugarcane produces about 700 gallons of ethanol, while an acre of corn produces only 350 gallons. In an effort to reduce their dependence on foreign oil, Brazil requires that all motor vehicle fuels contain a blend of at least 24 percent ethanol.