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"The current algae farm consists of 1,100 acres of saltwater ponds thatthe Company projects will produce a minimum of 4.4 million gallons of algaloil and 110 million pounds of biomass on an annual basis."
 
Where do the millions of pounds of nutrients come from?  Can human and animal waste provide all the necessary nitrogen, and what about phosphorus and potassium?  And what about the stench??  My vegetable garden needed all those things, and I would guess that algae is not all that different.
 
Oil from algae is certainly a very interesting idea, and I hope the biologists on the list will comment on it.
 
BTW, of course what's left of soybeans after the oil is extracted is rich in protein and fiber etc and can be used for human and animal food.  Likewise corn after the starch is converted to ethanol.  Not so for sugar cane, at least regarding protein.> Date: Wed, 27 Aug 2008 11:12:31 -0400> From: [log in to unmask]> Subject: Bio-Diesel, vastly better than ethanol and gasoline> To: [log in to unmask]> > An impressive documentary recently; "FIELDS OF FUEL" has won many awards.> > The film eloquently contradicts approximately 600 articles published in> major media to bash bio-diesel. It reviews petrochemical's political history.> > Don't confuse this with Ethanol.> > Biodiesel certainly seems to be one of the best alternative power sources> available. Algae farms are now producing bio-oils from which fuel, food,> and plastic can be derived. Mere cold-pressing can extract oil which is a> main component of algae, by weight, 50%. It is now being offered at fuel> stations througout Europe.> > Bio-diesel oil tops the BTU efficiency studies. Both gasoline and ethanol> utilize nearly as much energy to manufacturer as they provide. Yet, bio-oil> produces a multiple of the energy required to create it.> > Bio-diesel exhaust is much less hazardous then petroleum fuel exhausts. It> smells like french fries, rather than carcinogenic hell. Newer diesel> engines are highly efficient and clean. The first diesel engine was> introduced to the world in the late 19th c. running on peanut oil. Not> surprisingly, the wealthy and successful Rudolf Diesel died an early death> under suspicious circumstances.> > Algae grows in seawater, and duplicates its mass every 24 hours. It can use> wastewater. It is a completely renewable resource. Algae farms extract> carbon dioxide from the air and produce oxygen, protein, fiber and oil.> > Oil can be extracted from algae by cold-press, harmless CO2 process, or> conventional hexane solvent process. > > The process is completely independent of petrochemical industry, though the> existing pipeline grid would be useful.> > Under pessimistic scenarios, bio-diesel shines brightly in terms of the> environment and economics.> > Here are optimistic scenarios that I've calculated. Please confirm and> critique.> > Using the optimistic claims of the algae farmers (see below), then if> biodiesel hybrids (generated or plug-in) replaced gasoline cars and if> engine efficiencies are doubled, then a city of 1 million people could> replace all of its gasoline usage with an algae farm of 3.65 square miles,> or 1.35 miles on each side of a square representing that farm.> > A village of 5,000 could replace its gasoline requirements, accordingly,> with an algae farm of 25,000 square feet (500 ft per side). > > For more info:> > www.biodieselamerica.org/what_is_biodiesel> > www.biomassmagazine.com/article.jsp?article_id=1366&q=&page=all> > Here are statments from a company that is currently going into production.> > http://gas2.org/2008/03/29/first-algae-biodiesel-plant-goes-online-april-1-2008/> > a) "Microalgae... can produce 30-100 times the oil yield of soybeans on> marginal land and in brackish water. The biomass left-over from oil-pressing> can either be fed to cattle as a protein supplement, or fermented into> ethanol." > > b)"The current algae farm consists of 1,100 acres of saltwater ponds that> the Company projects will produce a minimum of 4.4 million gallons of algal> oil and 110 million pounds of biomass on an annual basis." > > Jim West> www.geocities.com/noxot
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