Saturday, September 22, 2007

Biodiesel Worse than the Regular Kind

Rapeseed biofuel ‘produces more greenhouse gas than oil or petrol’ - Times Online Europe is going nuts over biodiesel as a fuel to fight global warming. Only one problem - it doesn't work to fight global warming.
Measurements of emissions from the burning of biofuels derived from rapeseed and maize have been found to produce more greenhouse gas emissions than they save.
...
Rapeseed and maize biodiesels were calculated to produce up to 70 per cent and 50 per cent more greenhouse gases respectively than fossil fuels. The concerns were raised over the levels of emissions of nitrous oxide, which is 296 times more powerful as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide.
N2O is one of the most carefully monitored gas turbine power and generation, as this web search illustrates.

This doesn't even include the costs and emissions associated with the growing of the corn or rapeseed to turn into diesel (nor does it account for the rain forest cut down for growing various grains).

Life is never as simple as the people with the simple answers want it to be. In other words, look out for the unintended consequences.

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