Biofuels without Impacts on Food Production

June 20, 2012

Could plant-derived biofuels meet 30% of the global demand for liquid transportation fuels? An article published in F1000 Biology Reports says the answer is yes.

Researchers are currently examining ways that plant bodies, rather than the seeds, can be improved for making next-generation biofuels.

This is good news for facilities with carrier fleets, utility vehicles, rental cars, school buses, and biomass-based generation looking for alternative sources of fuel.

This potential development in biomass extraction technology could drastically reduce the amount of greenhouse gas released into the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels without having an impact on food production.

The research also addresses concerns that land used to grow biofuel plants will cut into available fields for food production. Recent scientific advances suggest that non-edible plants can be engineered or bred to grow on the approximately 600 million worldwide hectares (just under 1.5 billion acres) of abandoned agricultural land.

Along with using the inedible parts of traditional crops, these strategies could reduce negative effects on food production and the ecosystem.

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