The argument about turning food into fuel generally revolves around corn ethanol, even though there are numerous other crops with better potential for making fuel. Among the many issues is the use of arable land to produce very little fuel. An acre of corn only yields about 330 gallons of corn ethanol.
But a breakthrough by CoolPlanet Biofuels claims that an advanced bioenergy crop, giant Miscanthus, allows them to create upwards of 4,000 gallons of cellulosic gasoline per acre, about 12-times better than corn ethanol. That means more fuel from less land.
CoolPlanet’s process utilizes coarsely-ground biomass from the specially-bred giant Miscanthus plant that takes about an hour to transform the biomass into usable gasoline. Total cost? About 60-cents per gallon. Furthermore, the left-over biomass can be returned to the soil to increase field fertility in the MidWestern fields where it is grown.
But wait, there’s more! Since CoolPlanet’s gasoline contains no oxygenates, it can be seamlessly blended with oil-based gasoline. The fuel has already been EPA approved for blending, and CoolPlanet hopes to get more refineries online with a mass production-ready modular refinery structure.
My question then…why is this the first I’ve heard of this? Sounds incredibly promising, and this could be the big break biofuels need.
Source: Green Car Congress