Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Could "Jatropha Curcas" Be the Missing Piece in the Climate Change Puzzle?

With climate change in the forefront of everyone's minds, Scientists continue to search for the just the right piece to insert into the intricate climate change solution puzzle. One such recent puzzle piece is "carbon farming", and more specifically, carbon farming using the Jatropha Curcas plant/tree.

Although predominantly used to produce bio-diesel, the Jatropha Curcas tree is also being piloted for sequestering harmful carbon emissions from our atmosphere.

Aside from bio-diesel production, the by-product of Jatropha Curcas' trans-esterification process can also be used to make a vast array of products such as: soap, toothpaste, cosmetics, high quality paper, energy pellets, cough medicine, embalming fluid, or used as a moisturizer in tobacco products, or to create a rich organic fertilizer, as well as to produce pipe joint cement.

Jatropha Curcas grows best on soil that is well drained, and has good aeration, and thrives best in temperatures averaging 20-28 degrees Celsius (68-85 degrees Fahrenheit). However, it is also extremely adaptable, and can survive in areas with marginal or low nutrient content soils. Botanists recommend Jatropha Curcas to be planted at a rate of 3,030 plants per hectare or (2.5 acres). Although it requires some water to survive (recommended 660 mm rainfall per year), it can easily withstand long periods of drought making it an ideal plant for coastal desert communities who have access to desalinated seawater sources. Even more impressive, is fact that the Jatropha Curcas plants themselves are capable of producing bioenergy (in the form of tree trimmings) which would support the power production needed to propel the desalination and irrigation systems.

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Sunday, September 15, 2013

What You Should Know About Biofuel

Today, biofuel is among the leading sources of energy. As we can see now, there are a lot of cars that make use of biofuel as alternative to petroleum-based fuels such as petroleum or diesel. This is due to the recent rise in oil prices. Also, the number of people who have become aware of the deteriorated effects of the continued use of petroleum-based fuels to the environment is increased making this kind of fuel gains its popularity.

Biofuel is an environmentally friendly fuel in any forms (liquid, solid or gas) that is produced from a recently dead biological matter. This is what distinguishes biofuel from a petroleum-based fuel or fossil fuel, as fossil fuel is a cause of global warming and is composed of long dead biological matter. A fuel is considered a biofuel if it contains more than 80% renewable materials.

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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Crude Oil Its Uses and Benefits

The earth has become a better place to live on thanks to the many discoveries of mankind which has very well improved the lifestyle of the modern man. There had been many breath taking discoveries and many precious metals and commodities have been excavated from mother earth till now.

Though most of these commodities like metals have been used for many industrial applications nothing can be compared when it come to the usefulness of crude-oil. Indeed this has been the most valuable commodity that has been drilled out from earth and which has readily changed the lifestyle of human beings. In today's world anything we use for our daily purpose is indirectly linked to this precious commodity crude_oil. In today's world the largest producers of this precious crude oil are the countries of Saudi Arabia, Russia and followed by United States of America.


If we go deep into the chemistry of the crude-oil, it can be said that it is made up of a hydrocarbon mixture. It is found as a liquid in its natural form and found within the formations of earth's crevices. The crude oil is otherwise called as petroleum and it has been found within the porous rock formations deep inside the earth due to the decomposition of the dead organic matter millions of years ago.

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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Ethics of Biofuel Production

Biofuel production is the processing of "fuel," energy for which has etiology in biological carbon fixation. Sources of biofuel are mostly starch crops such as sugarcane or corn, and cellulose biomass derived from trees and grasses. Biofuel production via these routes yields ethanol as the principle source of energy. The ethanol is blended with gasoline (fossil fuel) to stretch out fuel reserves.

According to the Canadian Red Cross (2011), almost 1,000,000,000 people go to bed hungry every night. In a world with starving men, women and children, who mostly die from hunger, is biofuel production ethical?

This question has been raised in multiple online forums filled mostly with scientists and engineers. Although the topic was introduced clearly, several people converged by demanding a "definition" of ethics. Definition of ethics? Suggested was a review of the collective works of world philosophers dating back to the time of ancient Greece.

Argued by scientists and engineers was the point that "ethics" is what is good for the many, and since fuel is needed by the many, biofuel production is a "good thing." This point of view was countered with facts (1-11) obtained directly from Michigan State University.

Globally, more than 1,300,000,000 people (19%) must "live" on less than $1 per day. Many people in the U.S. spend four times this much on one Starbucks coffee.

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Are Biofuel Wall Fireplaces Right for You?

When you begin to shop for ventless fireplaces, you will likely discover that there are a lot more styles to choose from than you imagine. You might also find that you are drawn to biofuel wall fireplaces. Even if you had your heart set on an electric model, there is something so magical about biofuel styles that makes them pretty hard to resist.

Biofuel is Not Gel

If you are like many other consumers, you might not be familiar with biofuel. You might even be under the impression that biofuel and gel are the same thing, but they are not. Although both are environmentally friendly and create a realistic flame that requires no ventilation, they are very different.

Gel is alcohol-derived. As it burns, it turns into tiny droplets of water, which are released into the air. On the other hand, biofuel is produced from sustainable plant crops like hemp, soya and sugar. These are crops that can easily be grown, harvested and grown again. This is obviously more attractive than buying wood for a traditional fireplace that likely contributes to deforestation and animal habitat loss.

Warming Benefits

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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Ethanol Fireplaces As An Alternative To A Gas Fireplace

With the cost of heating growing, fire places are a positive addition to home heating. Trends toward environmentally friendly options and away from reliance on domestic or foreign fuel have made ethanol fueled fire places a well-known alternative recently.

While ethanol is thought of as a gas, it is actually a plant, usually corn, instead of a petroleum-based solution. Ethanol fireplace settings allow for a great deal of control. You can set the flame as low or high as required for comfort. In a disastrous situation an ethanol fireplace can be turned off, easily, efficiently and in seconds. Ethanol fireplaces, just like gas fireplaces, meet all the fire security specifications. Both provide real burning flames, unlike an electrical fireplace which just simulates fire.

Those who buy a fireplace that uses ethanol do this to save energy and to help the environment. Even so, the primary cost for the purchase and set up of an ethanol burning fireplace is considerably greater than for a comparable natural gas burning fireplace. Even so, burning ethanol rather than natural gas can substantially save on power expenses. The environmental positives go beyond a green fuel supply. Also, there are tax breaks.

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Friday, July 20, 2012

What Exactly Are Biofuels?

Biofuels are a source of renewable energy in the form of bioenergy, which is derived from organic waste. Organic waste can be both urban and rural. Commonly called agrofuels, biofuels are produced from organic matter including plant products like wheat, corn sugar cane, soya beans, rape seeds, straw, vegetable oils, animal fats, jatropha, algae and such. These fuels have great potency to be used in different sectors but currently their main purpose is actualized in the transportation sector (especially liquid biofuels) where easy fuel storage and less pollution are sought after. In rural areas, biogas has been seen as good alternative, both in cost and availability. It is also used as LPG for cooking.

Biofuel technology is nothing new. It has a history stretched right back to the 1800s when Rudolf Diesel used peanut oil to run a compression engine and Nicolaus Otto who developed a spark ignition engine which ran on ethanol. Since then this area has been in a constant development phase and has a bright future.

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Saturday, June 2, 2012

Major Challenges in the Oil and Gas Industry

The oil & gas industry keeps on changing dramatically. Increasing consumption of oil and gas in developing countries such as Brazil, India and China are posing an uncertainty in future trends. Oil is obtained from the earth's crust. Crude oil can be collected from under the sea from sea creatures that died and got buried billions of years ago. It was formed when animals and plants got decomposed under mud and silt deposits.

The process involved in the oil and gas industry follows this order: Exploring > extracting > refining > transporting > marketing Exploring involves finding the new locations for oil, which leads to the extraction and refining. Refining converts the oil into a usable form (like gas or diesel) which we use in our daily lives. Transporting involves pipelines through which the oil is transported to oil tankers that take it to different places. Exploration might seem simple but it is rather complicated. It is not easy to explore new areas in a short duration. There is a great demand for oil in the world market to carry out industrial, commercial and domestic tasks. This demand is more than the actual production of the oil. This is why the countries that have a lot of oil are among the richest countries.

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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Fossil Fuel Supplies and Renewable Resources

Will we run out of fossil fuels? Yes and no. There are two forces at work in the fossil fuel market: supply and demand. As we use a non-renewable resource, we must progressively move toward more difficult sources to maintain supply. At the start of the oil industry, crude oil could be scooped up from the ground or pumped out of wells only a few feet deep. As these were used up, we moved to deeper wells, off shore installations, and now sand and shale deposits with each move increasing extraction costs.

 No matter how much prices increase, there is a limit to how much fossil fuels can be extracted from the earth. Once this "peak" has been reached, production steadily decreases regardless of the technology applied. Studies put peak oil happening somewhere between 2004 and 2020, while coal has a similar time frame. Natural gas may last longer, but North America is already hitting peak production despite an increase in well drilling. On the demand side, the developing world is rapidly increasing its energy usage, which is leading to a major jump in worldwide demand. Even if current production rates could be maintained, this demand means increases in fossil fuel prices.

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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Biomass, Biofuels and Biogas

In recent years there has been a lot of interest in renewable and alternative energy sources. This has seemingly become an even bigger issue in the wake of the Japanese nuclear crisis, where the nuclear plant at Fukushima was damaged by the earthquake and resultant tsunami on March 11th. There is now a real danger that harmful radiation could escape from the site. People have always been uncertain of the safety of utilising nuclear power and such a scare only serves to heighten their concerns. That is why increasingly people are looking for alternatives. One such alternative is the use of biofuels.

What are Biofuels?

The term 'biofuel' refers to a broad range of fuels that are created from 'biomass' (see below). Biofuels are often used as an additive rather than as a 'pure' fuel. Bioethanol is an example of this. It is an alcohol created by fermenting the sugar components of plant materials and whilst ethanol can be used as a fuel for cars in its purest form, it is normally added to petrol to improve the emissions from the vehicle and increase octane.

Ok, so what is Biomass?

Biomass is a renewable energy source. It refers specifically to biomaterials from living organisms and recently living organisms - examples of which are wood, waste and alcohol fuels. There are actually several different sources of biomass energy, so in addition to the three just mentioned, there are: garbage and landfill gases. There are a few different mechanisms by which biomass can be converted to energy:

Thermal Conversion

This involves the use of heat in order to convert biomass into an alternative chemical form. There are different forms of thermal conversion - two examples of which are torrefaction and pyrolysis.

Chemical Conversion

This is quite simply where a range of chemical processes are used in order to convert biomass to alternative forms.

Biochemical Conversion

This involves harnessing the power of naturally occurring biochemical conversion processes. Microorganisms are used to break down biomass - Anaerobic Digestion is an example of this.

Biogas

Biogas is a type of biofuel that is produced by anaerobic digestion or fermentation of biodegradable materials, including biomass. Biodegradable waste can, for example, be converted to methane - which is a renewable energy source.

So are Biofuels the answer?

It remains to be seen whether or not biofuels are a long term solution to the problems surrounding the energy industry. There are certainly discussions to be had about the impact that the production of biofuels has on carbon emissions and biodiversity, but these are certainly not the only issues.

Projen Project Management Consultants are experts in Anaerobic Digestion and Biogas: http://www.projen.co.uk/

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Daniel_Almond

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6167574

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