Skip to comments.Forget Biofuels - Burn Oil And Plant Forests Instead
Posted on 08/16/2007 2:22:11 PM PDT by blam
Forget biofuels - burn oil and plant forests instead
19:10 16 August 2007
NewScientist.com news service
It sounds counterintuitive, but burning oil and planting forests to compensate is more environmentally friendly than burning biofuel. So say scientists who have calculated the difference in net emissions between using land to produce biofuel and the alternative: fuelling cars with gasoline and replanting forests on the land instead.
They recommend governments steer away from biofuel and focus on reforestation and maximising the efficiency of fossil fuels instead.
The reason is that producing biofuel is not a "green process". It requires tractors and fertilisers and land, all of which means burning fossil fuels to make "green" fuel. In the case of bioethanol produced from corn an alternative to oil "it's essentially a zero-sums game," says Ghislaine Kieffer, programme manager for Latin America at the International Energy Agency in Paris, France (see Complete carbon footprint of biofuel - or is it?).
What is more, environmentalists have expressed concerns that the growing political backing that biofuel is enjoying will mean forests will be chopped down to make room for biofuel crops such as maize and sugarcane. "When you do this, you immediately release between 100 and 200 tonnes of carbon [per hectare]," says Renton Righelato of the World Land Trust, UK, a conservation agency that seeks to preserve rainforests.
Righelato and Dominick Spracklen of the University of Leeds, UK, calculated how long it would take to compensate for those initial emissions by burning biofuel instead of gasoline. The answer is between 50 and 100 years. "We cannot afford that, in terms of climate change," says Righelato.
(Excerpt) Read more at environment.newscientist.com ...
Although this makes perfect sense to me, I almost must say GOOD GRIEF. It took how much money and how many geniuses to come up with this common-sense conclusion? Reality is that oil works pretty dadgum well. Until a truly substantial development in alternative fuel technology comes along, all the rest is nothing but feelgood symbolism over substance, business as usual for liberals.
MM (in TX)
This will be suppressed as heresy!..............
Hurricane Dean is a stalkin'
Earthquakes are a rockin'
Volcanoes are a poppin'
Vick is a coppin
Padilla ain't gonn be walkin'
and its all Bush's fault
Cause al Gore is a talkin'
Ban all biofuels based on food and land than can grow food.
A hot day in August is not proof of global warming.
And don’t be a Corn ‘Denier’.
Good luck getting this idea past the enormous power of the ADM/farm-state lobby.
Further, the only reason we burn as much corn as we do now is that we are taxing someone else (which in the end is always a tax on all of us) to make the price seem lower than gasoline. We are thus paying for ethanol twice: in the tax levy and in higher prices for everything that corn touches as a food.
Even worse, this subsidy is enforced by armed federal agents, which just shows how little we treasure liberty today. If we really were the “land of the free”, government would only recommend what people should do and it would show the highest respect for the lives of its citizens by reserving the use of armed agents only for matters of the utmost importance.
 Office of the Secretary of Defense Clean Fuels Initiative presentation (pdf)
To any Freeper who can answer this, I’d appreciate an answer.
I was wondering (after reading an essay by George Orwell on this very topic) why no one seems to be thinking of peat as a fuel alternative?
Besides the mess, of course.
Peat fires burn pretty nicely and evenly, and I should imagine peat would be cheaper to produce and purchase than oil, coal or natural gas (I’m assuming), and would make a very nice winter fuel in some places.
Flame away, but I’m simply asking anyone who might have more knowledge of the subject than I for some information.
Heretics! Apostates! Deceivers! How dare these “scientists” give us facts.
The Great Prophets Al Gore, Nancy Pelosi, and Leonardo DiCaprio and the righteous call for burning these de facto witches at the stake! Oh, wait that would be polluting....
Screw that, let the market decide what is grown. Ban biofuels based on food my RIA.
NOT TRUE ... given the substantial price rise on ANY product touched by corn or corn byproducts, corn-based bioethanol is produced at a NET LOSS.
Does this mean that we can finally cut down those forests that were killed by the bark beetles and replant them?
Biofuels are less dense. At one time 27 percent of agricultural land was used for transportation fuel - horses - and the vehicles did their own refining.
Growing fuel is stupid to start.
Trees- The Renewable Resource.
Whatever happened to that?