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"I want to use biofuel for my home and car"

Biofuels are renewable sources of energy using vegetable and other oils. With costs of gas prices going up looking for alternative sources of energy. I have heard that biodiesels or biogas burn cleaner and are much less expensive than traditional gasoline. There are companies that sell biofuel/biodiesel/biogas - wanted to know if it is safe and smart to use.

wanted by: jheyun (49) in Boston, MA 02114 +
updated on: July 22, 2011, 1:06 a.m. (6 years, 1 month ago)
posted on: March 15, 2011, 1:39 p.m. (6 years, 5 months ago)
tags: auto car energy furnace heating heating oil
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Re: I want to use biofuel for my home and car

John,

Since I worked in the emerging technologies field, I will enlighten you a little on the reality of biofuels. Biofuels will not reach petroleum parity anytime soon as scaling is the biggest problem.

Looking to 2020, bio-based alternatives reach just 3% of petroleum’s share in the best case. If you are looking for biofuel, you would mean biobutanol as bioethanol is chemically incompatible due to its low energy density and need to be mixed with gasoline at 10% max and the government subsidies will not last with costs at a minimum $6 per gallon to produce.

Biobutanol is between $6 to $30 a gallon which is still unrealistic as its lacks the economies of scale and distribution channels. Is the premium cost worth the green label, probably not in my opinion. Biodiesel is slightly better at $4.5 to $5 per gallon at 20% blends.

Conclusion on cost: The cost of biologically-derived alternatives to petroleum products, without subsidy, ranges from 125% of the petroleum equivalent (bioethanol in Brazil) to three to five times more for most fuels and plastics, even at industrial scale.

-Andrew
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