Wheels just fell off the Biodiesel and Ethanol bandwagons

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Connecticut, USA
[sarcasm] Who knew? [/sarcasm] Study says ethanol not worth the energy "...it takes 29% more fossil energy to turn corn into ethanol than the amount of fuel the process produces" "It takes 27% more energy to turn soybeans into biodiesel fuel and more than double the energy produced is needed to do the same to sunflower plants..." The study didn't even address the foolishness of using prime agricultural land to feed cars rather than humans.
 
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Northern CA
Keith, it looks like someone has finally noticed the elephant in the room. It's amazing how long they managed to ignore it. I guess the combination of big Agribusiness and their bought and paid for Congress Critters plus the greenies all singing in concert was too much for the press to see through.
 
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Everson WA - Pacific NW USA
I agree on the economics of ethanol - the cost is not just the energy of growing it etc....the processing and distillation sucks up a high percentage. On biodiesel - I argue a bit with their number for a true oil plant. I still think there may be a way....I think university level research should continue. And the cars/trucks should run on the oil not the degylcerized biodiesel...at least in the summer. AS for the prime agricultural land...lemme put it this way, when was the last time you saw a starving American? (not counting someone with a true medical condition)
 

blupupher

Site Donor 2021
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I am not sure about biodiesel, but doesn't ethanol 85 produce less power, ie lower MPG than gasoline also? So while cheaper per gallon, you are not really saving that much, if any, money at all.
 
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Location
Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by Pablo: On biodiesel - I argue a bit with their number for a true oil plant. I still think there may be a way....I think university level research should continue. And the cars/trucks should run on the oil not the degylcerized biodiesel...at least in the summer.
There is some merit to continuing work woth bio-oils at a research level and even limited production. Alcohol production is old news, until someone comes up with a valid, honest, technical and economic analysis that shows how we get from where we are to alcohol as a fuel making economic sense, no more public money should be urinated away in the form of subsidies or a requirement to use the stuff in fuel. One good test would be to require alcohol production to only use alsohol for fuel in all of the processes that require energy input.
 

Al

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Elizabethtown, Pa
quote:
Originally posted by keith: [sarcasm] Who knew? [/sarcasm] Study says ethanol not worth the energy "...it takes 29% more fossil energy to turn corn into ethanol than the amount of fuel the process produces" "It takes 27% more energy to turn soybeans into biodiesel fuel and more than double the energy produced is needed to do the same to sunflower plants..." The study didn't even address the foolishness of using prime agricultural land to feed cars rather than humans.
Exactly..the next to fall off of the bandwagon will be Hydrogen. I mean a blind man could see into the ethanol thing. But unfortunately in country there is a shortage of intelligence, common sense, and science education. That especially applies to our retarded politicians.
 
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Canada
I've also ready studies stating that ethanol is a relatively poor oxygenate. Also, there are ethanol production plants that have been in operation for 25 years that couldn't dream of keeping the lights on without truckloads of government subsidies. But alas, it keeps the farm lobby and the tree hugggers happy, so the politicians will keep flogging this dead horse.
 
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Now hopefully the wheels will fall off of emmissions regulations that favour lowered NOx emmissions at the expense of higher CO2 emmissions, HC emmissions, and groundwater pollution associated with the storage/transportation of petrol/diesel.
 
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Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by Al: Exactly..the next to fall off of the bandwagon will be Hydrogen. I mean a blind man could see into the ethanol thing. But unfortunately in country there is a shortage of intelligence, common sense, and science education. That especially applies to our retarded politicians.
Hydrogen has Bush and the Governator pimping for it.
 

Al

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Elizabethtown, Pa
quote:
Originally posted by Ron Jeremy: I've also ready studies stating that ethanol is a relatively poor oxygenate. Also, there are ethanol production plants that have been in operation for 25 years that couldn't dream of keeping the lights on without truckloads of government subsidies. But alas, it keeps the farm lobby and the tree hugggers happy, so the politicians will keep flogging this dead horse.
Well I'm a "Tree Hugger" but not all Tree Huggers are as stupid as this. There are politicians on the right side of the isle who think Hydrogen is the upcoming darling. and then there are politicians on the left that don't like windmills bc they ruin the view.
 
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Part of the real problem that we have is our agricultural methods. We got to the top of a the food chain by developing a system of obtaining food that used less energy to produce than it gave us. That gave us time to develop communities and societies etc. Now our food production systems consume more energy than the food that they produce. Of course if the biofuels that you intend to use start off using grains etc that have already got a nett negative balance, you can never hope to succeed, pushing yourself further backwards.
 
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michigan
they recently built an ethanol plant in my neck of the woods, and to hear proponents talk about it, we'd be keeping the extra energy in bottles in the closet. i got into an argument with someone who was telling me that you get more energy out than you put in. i don't know how to describe the look of disbelief that i had going, but it was pretty impressive. [Eek!] kind of like someone saying they're going to drop the kids off at the jackson/tyson daycare facility. yeah, that look.
 
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Location
Atlanta
Making biodiesel from sobeans is ineffcient. Which is way anybody who has studied the feasibility of large scale commercial production has based it using other plant life. There are plenty of sources that you can find to read about it. The current Oil administratioin just loves to find anything they can to keep the oil flowing. And, what everbody has missed is that even if it takes 50% more energy to produce, it's renewable and sustainable.
 

keith

Thread starter
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Connecticut, USA
quote:
Originally posted by BlueWorld: oh... and domestically produced.
How are we going to produce the equivalent of 20 million barrels of oil per day? That's going to need a huge acreage! I suspect it's a lot more than the total agricultural land in not only the US, but the entire planet. It will use more hydrocarbons to make the fertilizer than we will yield oil from beans! Wouldn't Global Warming improve crop yields and be a very good thing? Cooling down the planet would be a disaster if we used crops for energy. How do we feed the humans if all the land is used to fuel cars? It's better late than never to bring a little logic into the alternative energy debate.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
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New Jersey
any chemist / engineer worth their salt knew that... The economies of biodiesel are only present when you take a USED CONSUMER PRODUCT, and essentially recycle it. Ethanol is even worse, because there is no useful precursor (some carbohydrate can be reformed into hydrogen at low temperatures and have the potential to be excellent fuels). Sooner or later, it wont matter how much energy it takes, we wont have any choice. What are our choices? Fischer-troph fuel from coal derived syngas, biofuels, electrolyzed hydrogen? I know those that hate the environmentalists love to chalk stuff like this up as a "victory", little do they realize that some day theyll be paying the price one way or another. Amazing how the idiocy and one upping on both sides runs rampant. JMH P.S. Has anyone checked the energy penalty taking crude from the "well to the wheels"? Last I checked, there is a cost to pump it from the ground, ship it, refine it, ship it again, and then lets not forget the guzzlers on tthe road. [ July 18, 2005, 07:00 PM: Message edited by: JHZR2 ]
 
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12,385
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Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by BlueWorld: And, what everbody has missed is that even if it takes 50% more energy to produce, it's renewable and sustainable.
No, no, no, h3ll no. What most of us didn't miss is that it takes more energy to make a gallon of ethanol than you get out of it when you burn it. You need to add outside energy so it consumes more petroleum energy or other energy than if you did't make the ethanol in the first place. It would be more efficient to just use the other energy in it's present form than to fill ADM's coffers.
 
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12,385
Location
Northern CA
quote:
Originally posted by JHZR2: I know those that hate the environmentalists love to chalk stuff like this up as a "victory", little do they realize that some day theyll be paying the price one way or another. Amazing how the idiocy and one upping on both sides runs rampant. JMH
The bad part about this is that the knuckle dragging trogledites will use this as ammunition to not do anything except burn more oil.
 
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