Algae Biofuels


Algae fuel or algal biofuel is a substitute to liquid fossil fuels that utilizes algae as its source of energy-rich oils. Also, algae fuels are a substitute to common known biofuel sources, such as corn and sugarcane. Various companies and government agencies are sponsoring efforts to reduce capital and operating costs and make algae fuel production commercially feasible. Like fossil fuel, algae fuel releases CO2 when burnt, but unlike fossil fuel, algae fuel and other biofuels only release CO2 recently withdrawn from the atmosphere via photosynthesis as the algae or plant grew. The energy crisis and the world food crisis have sparked interest in algaculture (farming algae) for making biodiesel and other biofuels utilizing land unbefitting for agriculture. Among algal fuels' attractive characteristics are that they can be cultivated with negligible impact on fresh water resources, can be generated using saline and wastewater, have a high flash point, and are biodegradable and comparatively harmless to the environment if spilled. Algae cost more per unit mass than other advanced biofuel crops due to high capital and operating costs, but are declared to generate between 10 and 100 times more fuel per unit area.


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