By 2035, global energy consumption is expected to grow by 32%, and the demand for liquid fuels is forecast to increase by 18%, just over 15 million more barrels per day. The world’s population is expected to rise to 8.7 billion, meaning there will be 1.6 billion more people requiring energy. (1)
As the smartest technologies continue to deliver benefits, this includes the positive impact on the environment and an improved economy.
Cellulosic feedstocks are non-food based feedstocks that include crop residues, wood residues, yard waste, and dedicated energy crops. These feedstocks are composed of cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin. Cellulose and hemicellulose are made up of complex sugars, but it is more challenging to release the sugars in these feedstocks ready for conversion to biofuels and chemicals. Cellulosic feedstock offers several advantages over starch (corn) and sugar-based feedstocks. They are cheaper and more abundant; and it is for this reason that they provide a viable solution for the production of more substantial amounts of biofuels and biochemicals which will, one day inevitably, replace fossil fuels all together.
The biomass industry has recognized that dedicated energy crops are an attractive option as fuel or feedstock for their plants– either as the primary source or in addition to agricultural and forestry residue. These dedicated energy crops can be perennial grasses, fast-growing, short rotation trees similar to those being used in the pulp and paper industry, and potentially other plants.
Among the different types of dedicated energy crops, non-food perennial grasses are practical and effective for producing green energy. Therefore, cultivation of non-food grasses does not compete with food or food-related crops such as corn; nor does it interfere or compete with valuable natural resources such as forests and other timberland.
Biofuel provides energy security
Energy security is the most constant supply that is available and affordable for consumers as well as the industry. Some of the many risks to energy security are disrupting the supply of fossil fuels, energy price hikes and limited sources of fuel.
Builds economic development
Increasing investment in biofuels will result in a boost in economic growth This means that there will be more jobs and new sources of income for farmers in the industry. Further to this, developing countries will benefit from the economic growth as the demand for world energy increases.
Greenhouse Gas and Emission Reduction
Biofuel is also claimed to be the most successful alternative fuel to complete the rigorous emissions and health study under EPA’s Clean Air Act. Biofuel will reduce emissions of carcinogenic compounds up to as much as 85%.
The energy balance of fuel is the ratio of how much energy is required in order to produce, manufacture and distribute, then comparing this to the amount of energy that is released when fuel is burned. As energy security continues to grow as a topic in both society and government around the world, biofuel has a high energy balance compared to other fuel alternatives. Without a steady supply of affordable energy, the economy of the country will come to a halt with no energy to run power plants, transportation, and heat homes.
Recyclable and Biodegradable
Biofuel is proven to be less toxic and less likely to harm the environment and it causes lesser damage than fossil fuels. Biofuel is found to be less toxic than table salt as it is a natural, non-toxic vegetable oil. Biofuel is also proven to be safer to handle than petroleum fuel due to its low volatility. It must be noted that the high amount of energy biofuel contains does of the hazard of possible accidental ignition as the fuel will create enough vapour to ignite.